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Image1ME002Today it is three years since I became disabled with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities.

(A bit about how I became disabled.) 

I think anniversaries should be a day to pause and look back and to let go.

ducksoswegoriver4The post: Day 365 In The Pursuit of Love (Love) — I reflected back on 365 days of writing about Love. It was a joyful reflection. But this blog post I’ve thought about for many days — and it has not been mostly with joy. So often in the last few years, I’ve felt like I’ve made a lot of noise, only to have many people politely listen and then quietly drift away.

Balloons retirement partySo today, I ask am I happier today than I was then? Or am I the same person pretending to have changed? Or have I really found the blessings in the lessons from living with MCS? It is NOT a post to dwell on suffering or pain or invisibility of MCS nor is it about the lunacy of legally allowing tons of toxic chemicals to pollute this world. It is about perspective. For a time, I had so much crap dumped on me, I couldn’t see my way out to nurture myself or anyone else. My only perspective was pain.

With a lot of contemplation, I have found a few gifts that I am grateful for:

shadows Lake NeathawantaBREAKING OPEN

When I lost my: job, health, insurance, multiple friends, independence, identity as a teacher …. I faced the choice of breaking open or cracking up. It was touch and go for a while. It has been painful emotionally, physically and even spirituality. As any woman knows — there can be great pain during labor so that a new life can begin. I have chosen to labor through the fear and pain. I certainly would never wish MCS on myself or anyone — the disability smashed to bits my old life. I eventually, however, stopped wasting my time trying to fit the broken pieces back together, and instead, explored an entirely new way of being.

bird maybe goldfinch Oswego River FultonSAVED MY LIFE

Shortly, after my disability my son asked me, “Would you rather be disabled with MCS or have cancer?” I had to admit to him that I was in actuality facing both. Just prior to becoming disabled with MCS, I went for my yearly checkup — I got the call no one wants to get — my test was abnormal. Shortly after I became disabled with MCS, they retested me and this time my cells were “inflamed”. Apparently, this is better than abnormal. Three months later, they retested and although they wouldn’t use the word normal — we were almost there.

I’m not just the canary warning the rest of the world about the dangers of exposure to toxic chemicals. I believe that my ultra-sensitivity to toxic chemicals saved my life.


sleepy gosling near entranceI’ve learned my first and most important purpose is to awaken. It took over fifty years before I was ready to listen to this message.

I thought I was “awakening” …. until I read The Disappearance of the Universe by Gary R. Renard. My brother had loaned me many “spiritual” books that I had been reading for many months before I became disabled. Renard’s book, however, sat on my night stand untouched. Intuitively, I knew that when I read it everything — and I do mean — EVERYTHING I believed would change.

And it did.

I intellectually — finally — had the answers as to why the duality of fear and love appeared to exist in the universe. This book led me to have the courage to study the book — A Course In Miracles. Renard’s book gave me the “why” things are the way they are. A Course in Miracles gave me the forgiveness practices or the “how” with a lot of dedication I will ultimately let go of fear — so I can live a life of Love and ONLY Love.


full moon branchesSometimes my prayers are delayed because I’m not ready for the answer. Refer above for that 50 year wait.

supermoon lunar eclipse2Sometimes my prayers are answered but I didn’t like the answer and I ignored the guidance. That would be the five years I was really REALLY sick with chemical sensitivities at work but I refused to listen that I needed to get out of there before it was too late.

moon fall foliage Lake NeatahwantaSometimes my prayers are answered and I haven’t connected the dots yet. With the anniversary coming up — I thought maybe it would be a good idea to re-study the workbook in A Course in Miracles. This is a minimum of a year’s commitment. The last few days I’ve received three “messages” that I was to do research/study/take a course. I kept asking what the heck am I supposed to study? And then it hit me finally — the answer to my prayer was — YES — you are supposed to study the workbook again. 

cormorant Lake Ontario outlet sunriseTHE GREATEST GIFTS ARE ONES I NEVER IMAGINED

This blog.

Nature photography.

Deep forever friendships with people around the world.

My tiny ripples of inner peace are as important as any grand speech from a celebrity or world leader.

Great Blue Heron American Black Duck Oswego River FultonPeople who refuse to acknowledge MCS or who treat me as if I am invisible have chosen their blindness — I now see they are overwhelmed with their own pain and suffering and loss. I choose to forgive them for not being able to see mine.

Image5goslinggullThe saying “I have nothing left to give,” is never true. We all have the ability to give love and forgiveness and peace.

sunset Oswego River Lock 3I am truly grateful for each of you who have given me a soft place to land during this most vulnerable and often painful journey — I am blessed.

I hope each of you have had many things to be grateful for these past three years.