As you’ve seen, Mary’s posted at least 3 blogs about some aspect of Tosca, one of her true great friends, the last two about Tosca’s passing. I wanted to add my thoughts on this process and how I experienced this episode along with, and in contrast to, Mary.
Ever since Mary and I started dating almsot a year ago, she has talked about her friends and family relationships with me, just as I have with her. Other than her own kids and her mom, the person she talked about the most was her friend Tosca. Hearing about them, how their friendship started (much the same way mine did with Mary), what they have experienced and been through and supported each other in over the years, and especially their connectedness to each other. From my own perception, much of their connectedness was, as I’ve said before, because they saw the world the same way. I think they were both in the way of putting everyone else’s wants/needs ahead of themselves. And, now that I think about it, that was the same with me for the first 40 years of my life. As Mary and I have OFTEN said, including in Mary’s last blog about Tosca, although that sounds great on paper, and, in fact, we see that as noble in our society, in reality it actually leads to (or stems from) low self-esteem in ourselves and also doesn’t allow/force others to take ownership of their own lives.
Like Mary said, this means that we spend a tremendous amount of energy trying to “make” everyone around us happy. That’s certainly what I did! And I cannot speak to the reasons why each individual does that, but I can certainly tell you why I did. Because if I was your best friend, loved and supported you, then you would give me love and acceptance back–something which I wasn’t giving myself. So it was completely logical in my life construct at that time for me to put everyone ahead of myself. In the end, though, what that does is it creates in me 1) someone who didn’t know myself, because it was much more important to know who YOU were, 2) it was a way to never have to look at myself and ask WHY do I not love and accept myself, and 3) it makes love and acceptance a drug, because as soon as you walk away, there goes all my love and acceptance with you! And I know I’ve said this in other blogs before, but just think of how much energy it took for me to alter my persona to be each different person’s best friend when I was with that person! I had to store those personas as if on a computer disk to access whenever one person left and another one arrived. So to cover all the energy it took to create this way of living, I, and others who do this, tend to become very highly energetic people. We try to overcome the energy-sapping system we have set up by simply ADDING more of our own energy! (Sound familiar, Mary?)
From what I felt, and from what Mary wrote about Tosca, she did the same thing. The problem is, what happens when you run a car too fast for too long? What happens when you leave your lightbulb on all the time? They break down or burn out. And that’s what happens to us. For each person it may be different: for Mary, her body may collapse from exhaustion, for me, I can retreat into Chardonnay, for others, if there is no other outlet, their stress and overexpenditure of energy will lead to the collapse of their bodies. As a number of people have pointed out to me, including Mary, disease is also dis-ease. I can tell you that I have clearly learned that people with theoretically “terminal” diseases have completely cured themselves of them after they diligently tracked down the sources of their stress and altered their beliefs to 1) do away with those stressors forever, and 2) let go of believing doctors who told them they were going to die. (To learn more about beliefs and how they can cure illness, see www.option.org, there are MANY real experiences you can find there).
Doctors (as a whole, not all of them), as part of their profession, many times have to give “bad” news, and as such, they don’t like to create “false hope” for patients with grave conditions, because they perceive that if the person does die, they will be blamed for giving this “false hope”. Unfortunately, in order to cover themselves, they will often ADD to the chances of someone dying because they couch “terminal” illnesses in terms of how long someone has to live instead of what the survival rate is for that illness. And because the patient BELIEVES the doctor, because they are the “expert”, it adds to their belief that they will, in fact, die, which in turn increases the possibility that they will, since beliefs are so powerful for the physical body.
Take the example of pancreatic cancer. Overall survival rates are 5%, or 1 out of 20 persons surviving. But what happens is that instead of saying that, MOST doctors will say you have 3-6 months to live when given this prognosis. There is a focus on the “inevitable” to prepare the patient and their family/friends for that “inevitable” moment. BUT, there is something else that is “inevitable” also–one out of every twenty people diagnosed will SURVIVE! So why not focus on the positive? Let go of worrying about someone getting mad at you as the doctor because you encouraged your patient to believe that they will be that ONE who does beat it? In fact, I believe that if we started off someone’s journey with cancer in this way, cancer rates would drop significantly. How many of that 5% who survive pancreatic cancer believed they were the ONE? Probably most of them. Were there some who believed they were the ONE but died anyway? Sure. But what do you think: do you believe cancer rates would drop if each and every person went into their journey truly believing that they would be a survivor? If every person completely ignored the “3-6 months” or “6-12 months” to live?
Well, off on a bit of a tangent there, but not a huge one, because as Mary described, Tosca spent a lot of energy pushing against people or things that tried to break her down.
We had known she was on a journey with cancer since I first met Mary and, at times, it seemed that I might never get to meet Tosca. So I was very grateful to have had the opportunity to get to spend a wonderful evening with her, with Mary and her children there. It was so nice to have the chance to talk to her and interact and look in her eyes and just be in the moment.
It has been a big challenge for me, not only not being able to be with Mary as Tosca was going on her journey back to the Light, but also to understand why she did not want Mary to be physically with her at that time. As I said to Mary, not the way I would do it, but that is Tosca’s choice and Mary accepted it and then we talked about how Mary could be okay with that. And she was.
Although I have a clear, open pipeline to my Inner Voice, the one I use to make decisions for myself, there is another inner voice that I have not yet learned to let loose and listen to. That is the one that Mary is so adept at. A voice, a part of the mind, that allows us to connect with other people or events at a distance. I don’t think this is any airy-fairy, mumbo-jumbo. The human mind is the most underused, under-understood feature of the universe. I believe the more we let go of placing limiting beliefs on ourselves, the more we will allow ourselves to use more of our brain that is sitting there waiting for us. I think I’m taking my first baby-steps in that regard, as witnessed by this scene that played out. I went downstairs to make a sandwich, and just during that few minutes I heard the phone ring distantly up in my room. I commented to Edward “jeez, I come downstairs for one minute, and that’s when the phone rings!” To which he replied: “Don’t worry, they’ll call back.” And as he said that, I KNEW that the phone had been Mary calling to tell me that Tosca had died. And I said to Edward, “Yeah, but this call’s different.” And sure enough, I was right. So now I have asked Mary to help me to start to explore those other parts of my brain (although she might describe it as something different) and learn to hear this other inner voice–the one that connects me to you and to everyone else in our wonderful universe here…