This time of year can be filled with joy, excitement and celebration but for others it can stir up family drama, feelings of grief and just wanting the holidays to be over. I personally know this roller coaster ride of emotions after my sisters sudden death in 1999 and years of adjustment after divorce and the breaking up of family and the holidays. This year delivered a new experience of emotions as we face yet another phase of life…aging parents.

This past week Louie and I went to Florida to help my eighty two year old parents transition into their new home. They had just left sixteen inches of snow and forty five years living in a 3100 square foot home in Rochester, New York to downsize to a 1500 square foot condo in a senior living community.

During our visit we witnessed and experienced…

A collection of life’s accumulations and memories that couldn’t be left behind crammed into every empty space.

Years of denial, resentments, and power struggles that escalated in the stress of change and letting go.

Feelings of helplessness and fear of losing my father as we watched him experience a grand mal seizure, rushed to the hospital and be unresponsive for the next three hours.

Old wounds and years of anger and frustration with my mother surfaced and I expressed my feelings only to unveil and reveal her deep seeded resentments at the core of my parents relationship and dysfunction.

Needless to say, I hit a wall the night we come home from the hospital. I crumbled into my bed overwhelmed, exhausted, crying and praying (actually begging) for relief. I wanted to piece together and understand a lifetime of feelings and experiences.  I finally fell asleep surrendering in the arms of the divine only to awake hours later hearing…

“S.O.S – Struggle Or Surrender” 

The power of choice was presented yet once again.  You and I can either choose to struggle, deny, or fight against what was, is, and maybe will be for sometime or even forever. Or…You and I can choose to surrender and accept what is, was, and will be. I am not going to tell you it’s easy. I am in the midst of this spiritual practice to heal my relationship with my mother. It’s deep and I really do want peace vs. resentment and struggle. Its a choice to be declared and committed to. The miracle is… this choice can reveal peace within yourself and ultimately peace with others.

As I prepared to write this today, I looked up the meaning of S.O.S and found…Save our Souls. I cannot say I was shocked. When the divine wakes you up in the middle of the night, there are no coincidences.

So if you are struggling this holiday season, know you have a choice. Take these steps here and now or crawl into your bed and pull the covers over you head…

Call out for divine help and support…

Share your fears, anger, tears and let it surface to be healed. Don’t deny, dwell or stay stuck in it. You are human and you have human experiences and feelings. There is support all around you but you have to reach out and ask for help.

Accept what is and what isn’t

You cannot change your past or the people in your lives. Your power lies in your choices and how you choose to BE in relation to your experiences. I not only had to accept what was and is but I had to grieve and accept what wasn’t. Which is sometimes harder when you expect life to be different, on your terms and anticipating for things to change. In my case, I have been waiting for a compassionate mother to show up who expresses and shares unconditional love and I want parents who get along, appreciate each other and enjoy life together especially in retirement. Those expectations keep me in a “holding pattern of wanting” and it only invites continued disappointment and grief.

Practice surrender vs struggle

Surrender into the moment, the here and now. This is where peace is present. Imagine a team of angels, your closest spiritual guide, or your loved one in spirit, holding you, cradling you in their arms. Allow yourself to just be and melt into their unconditional love and healing. When you surrender, peace and love will permeate you, its who you truly are. Love will guide you and help you remember what you need to know to save your soul, to embody your soul, and to guide your through the darkness and back to the light.

I leave you with this prayer and my wish…for you to experience your miracle of peace this holiday season.

Prayer for Peace and Acceptance

“Dearest angels its a new year and my desire is to let go of any suffering I am creating in my life. Help me to see where I am not accepting “what is” and “what isn’t” in my life, especially circumstances or people that I have no control over. I am willing and ready to create peace and acceptance from within. Please guide me, show me the resources, teachers or tools that I need in order to master this. A miracle is also welcomed. Thank you always endless love, guidance and support. And so it is”

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