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Author Topic: Welcome Linda Clare  (Read 3518 times)
Alan
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« on: May 22, 2013, 08:14:26 AM »

Dear Linda Clare,

I'm delighted that you decided to join us!  I think you will really enjoy the environment here.  We are very supportive and as time goes on we get very close.  Based on your profile religion at CAF, I think you will enjoy it here.  We are not all Catholic, but most of us are.  We are at different points on our journey and have different ideas, but we are always supportive of each other and we hear each other out with respect and kindness.

To the others:  I met Linda Clare on CAF after she has resurrected a thread started by Reen and found great wisdom in it, and wanted to meet and learn more about Reen.  So I invited here, where John (ncjohn) and Lana were, with no doubt in my mind, Reen's two closest online friends.  I am privileged to consider her among my friends as well.

As I mentioned, it's been pretty quiet here lately but we may pick it up a little soon.  Let me know if there are any topics you'd like to discuss, or open a thread.  If you don't want it publicly searchable you can open a thread in the member-only sections.  Feel free to browse or post anywhere the software lets you.  You may find some interesting threads in the archive sections even.

One thing we have going on regularly now is every day John or I post a daily email we get from Franciscan Richard Rohr, and open discussion on it.  Sometimes it really hits me strongly and other times less, but Rohr has been of tremendous value in helping me learn to think non-dualistically, and helping me become into the kingdom Jesus taught about.  I love CAF, but we it's almost impossible to discuss anything by Rohr because of too many people who dive-bomb the threads, talking about what a heretic and a this or that Rohr is.  Admittedly Rohr does a few things that I don't understand, but personally I think much of his problem is he challenges the status quo of the way the institutional Church operates, and they treat him like they did 2000 years ago when another Brother challenged the way the Church operates.  We have a subforum for this, at: http://forums.wordsfree.org/index.php/board,52.0.html

Also we are mental illness-friendly and centering prayer-friendly; in fact those were the two biggest reasons we started WordsFree, in 2005.  We understand how MI operates; most of us here on WF have personal contact or even personal experience at mental illness.  I was highly psychotic from 2001 until October 2012, and my WF friends have been great comforts to me, even when I was being a royal pain in the ass.

Centering prayer has for strangely become evil in the writings of many we might otherwise consider intelligent and responsible Catholic authors, including CAF apologists.  But the strange thing is, every critical article makes the same objectively erroneous claims, as if one person made some stuff up and everybody else copied off of him, none of which actually looked into it long enough to know what the truth even was.  CP is now a banned topic there, at the request of a fellow CP practitioner who was tired of defending CP and those who advocate it, especially Cistercian monk Fr. Thomas Keating.  Centering prayer is one of several components that went into my healing that I'm sure if it weren't there I would still be severely psychotic.  We haven't really had many discussions about centering prayer for some time but if you haven't heard of it -- or in general contemplative prayer -- than IMO you might just want to hear more about it and we can help you find out more about it.

Oh gosh, lots to say as always... I'll leave it at this for now.  Again, welcome to WF.

Alan
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... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Linda Clare
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« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2013, 04:27:34 PM »

I think this might finally be the right place for me.  3 of my long messages went "poof!"  Never to be found again.  I'll keep this short since we're on our way out to pick up our son who has a serious case of paranoid schizophrenia.  He is in assisted living due to physical and mental challenges that we were not able to help him with.  He now has his own place, which is what he needs.  He's a quiet guy who suffers in silence.  He is on a scooter due to a hereditary disease which affects the nerves and muscles.  I admire his acceptance of his situation.  He refuses any kind of operation.  I don't know why, but as you say "it is what it is".
I found some quotes from Reen12 that I absolutely agreed with. I have saved many of them.  When a person suffers from a mental illness, no one sends a card, no one visits.  When our son went to an Assisted Living Facility, no one gave him a house warming present or a party.  He wouldn't hear of it.  He knows he's not going somewhere with a bright future.  It is what it is.  He accepts this and I think it's a gift from the God who created us.  So many say "they are blessed", and in many ways they are, but the ones who share in the pain of our Savior are the truly Blest.
Thanks for your invitation.
Linda Clare
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Linda Clare
Alan
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« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2013, 05:25:20 PM »

Linda Clare,

The picture you are painting of your son looks to me like a beautiful spirit of poverty.

Jesus began His Sermon on the Mount with, "“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

A spirit of poverty accepts things as they are, with no expectations.  A meme I recently posted on FB had the text, "let go of what is past, accept what is present, trust the future."  To me that's a lot of theology packaged up right there.

A spirit of poverty has no needs, and I've heard "abundance" described as having what you need, in order to do what you need to be doing, right now.  Anything in addition is just overflowing.

I decided to join the secular Franciscans and have been to my first meeting.  I am attracted to St. Francis for several reasons; his love for all of God's creatures, his humility, and his poverty.  I am pleased to have a pope who shares these values; it's time the Church took some of her own medicine, eh?   Wink

Here is a movie I watched about St. Francis that brought me to tears several times...

Francis of Assisi:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nrNMs7VgL8

One thing about being mentally ill is it makes you a social leper.  People don't want anything to do with you.  To turn that around into a blessing, you can become totally mortified to Other People's opinions, so that basically if people say good things you can feed off the energy, but when they say stupid and hurtful things you get to where you let it go by.  If you don't let it go by that can lead to depression or paranoia or self-loathing or what have you.

Note that I'm no expert.  I just made all that up but it connects with my own experience anyway.  I had severe bipolar disorder for 12 years.  That was the "official" label for the government.  There were also times when I had what were certainly dissociative characteristics.  Actually that ended up useful for me.  I used to say I'm a chameleon; my personality switches to match the mood.  

Oh well I have to go buy some lettuce and tomatoes for St. Julie now, so I'll wrap this up here.

Thank you again for joining us.  I'm confident you will like it here!  Smiley

Alan
« Last Edit: May 22, 2013, 10:34:41 PM by Alan » Logged

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Linda Clare
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« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2013, 09:35:33 PM »

I finally found this again, phew I get so frustrated I only learn by doing.  That's why I play piano.  Our son was in pain and asked us to bring him dinner and a few things. I think you're right on in what you said.  Best wishes on following St. Francis he and Claire were pals huh?  I will be exploring the site more and meeting new people now that I'm catching on.  I will cont. to read your messages.
Thanks,
Linda Clare
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Linda Clare
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« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2013, 10:06:30 PM »

Welcome Linda Clare  Smiley
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Alan
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« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2013, 10:30:13 PM »

Best wishes on following St. Francis he and Claire were pals huh?

Thank you; it already has been rewarding, and I'm looking forward to whatever is next.  Smiley

And yes, she became St. Clare of Assisi: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04004a.htm

Alan
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« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2013, 11:28:11 AM »

Welcome Linda Clare!  Smiley

I'm so excited to hear that something in Reen's writings caught your eye. She and I "met" on a thread at CAF where some unusually brutish posters were on the attack and quickly became friends. Reen dealt with great suffering, but with an amazing grace. I can't begin to tell how much I learned from her in so many different arenas.

I'm not sure if Alan mentioned it but she passed away in February. Even though I only saw her in person once, I would consider her among the 2 or 3 closest friends in my life and she is dearly missed.

It sounds as if your son also has an amazing spirit of acceptance. I have a grandson with cerebral palsy who deals with pain and will certainly deal with ostracism issues as he grows older that won't likely be much different from those that those with mental illness face. He too has an amazing spirit but is already starting to become sensitive to how some people react to him.

At any rate, welcome and I look forward to hearing what you have to say about things.
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"Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called children of God."
This is the effect of true charity, to be on good terms with all men, to consider no one your enemy, and to live at peace with those who hate peace.--Robert Bellarmine
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« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2013, 02:12:53 PM »

Ahhh, i know Reens is smiling down upon us all as we bring her journey up. I do miss her terribly. She suffered quietly for so many years, and never sat on anything without simply dealing...even if it was painful. She simply seen it as what had to be done. Sometimes we fear fear itself, and it is in our strength to try, to have faith, to live as closely to what we can as good role models. There is something special in any child that lives with great pain and suffering because they question life, live it to different degrees and challenges that life puts in their path. BUT it makes them stronger for having done so, and they see life more clearly than those who have lives better and more frivolously than we have. A great spiritual strength and resolution is in them, for they had to lean on someone or something greater in order to move on.

My son was terminally ill with great lung difficulties from age 7 up to 19 when he died (actually 5 weeks before he turned 19). He chose to live without regret after dieing on the table at age 4, and told to return by Jesus himself. He told him of many struggles and life that he had yet to see, and he must return. It was with great difficulty that he left the arms of his heavenly father and returned to us here.

He grew into a wonderful young man, very strong spiritually, accepted everyone equally, and lived with the honor of the old code that his grandfather taught him. His motto was Carpe Diem..seize the day!! He did this exclaiming that he'd rather live fully for a shorter time frame than longer, with regret.

As a mother we are different for watching this in awe, as we give them all the reason to live, the tools to move forward with, and seem to sometimes forget ourselves. My journey is to see that i did give him strength, he took the advice, and now i live trying to be as strong as he was. It is very hard to live up to such strength, but in my newer pains, he gives me strength.

Reens taught me to honor this, and not sit by idly and accept others to walk over me, and taught me that with belief in myself, i gift my two younger daughters with this strength of example...and i did it, i moved forward, away, and started a brand new life. All new struggles of course, but free of the life i was simply stuck in. Reen felt the necessity to also learn to take care of one self...

I leave you with a picture she made for me...and of course, our fearless leader!!!



[URL=http://s21.photobucket.com/user/Lanasshoebox/media/WichitaNoid-1.jpg.html]
« Last Edit: May 24, 2013, 02:14:39 PM by Lana » Logged
Linda Clare
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« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2013, 06:02:21 PM »

Thank you everyone for your welcome and wonderfully written words, I will read them again and again.  I'm still, after 13 years, at a loss in understanding what my son has had to endure.  I know that I have a deep side, but, my husband is such a character who keeps me laughing, that I still avoid facing things as I know I should.  I want to help others, because it's in my nature and I've been told that I have the gift of discernment.  The stories that I've read have given me the motivation I need to begin a life of caring again.  I began to have some apathy over things that I could not control, forgetting that prayer and mutual understanding is key to living through tragedy.  I'm on the path again.  I took the (sorta) out of Catholic.
Love in Jesus Name,
Linda Clare
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Linda Clare
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« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2013, 12:38:24 AM »

Thank you everyone for your welcome and wonderfully written words, I will read them again and again.  I'm still, after 13 years, at a loss in understanding what my son has had to endure.  I know that I have a deep side, but, my husband is such a character who keeps me laughing, that I still avoid facing things as I know I should.  I want to help others, because it's in my nature and I've been told that I have the gift of discernment.  The stories that I've read have given me the motivation I need to begin a life of caring again.  I began to have some apathy over things that I could not control, forgetting that prayer and mutual understanding is key to living through tragedy.  I'm on the path again.  I took the (sorta) out of Catholic.
Love in Jesus Name,
Linda Clare

One of our friends is a nurse and she was widowed at a young age, and eventually remarried a guy who, many years ago, worked as a clown.  To her it's Very Important that her husband can make her laugh.  It sounds like you are gifted that way.

At one low point in the middle of my psychosis, both my spiritual director and my psychiatrists each told me, independently, that I need to get more laughs.  They both suggested watching comedy.

Alan
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« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2013, 01:24:58 PM »

I do have a need to laugh and to join other musicians in creating beautiful music!  I hope that is what heaven will be for me.  I recently asked my husband if he would still be my husband in heaven because he does make me laugh even when I'm in extreme pain and I love him so much.  I think he said " yes" !  I think I'll need a written commitment.  What do you think?
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« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2013, 02:12:51 PM »

I do have a need to laugh and to join other musicians in creating beautiful music!  I hope that is what heaven will be for me.  I recently asked my husband if he would still be my husband in heaven because he does make me laugh even when I'm in extreme pain and I love him so much.  I think he said " yes" !  I think I'll need a written commitment.  What do you think?

I can't say about the husband thing for sure -- I'll let the theologians and the apologists battle that out -- but he will clearly still be your inspiration.  Cool
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« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2013, 03:32:36 PM »

I feel so bad for only noticing now that a new person has joined our midst! A warm welcome to you, Linda Clare. I am Shan (or Justicia, whichever you prefer!) and I am a young Catholic from across the pond to most on here (I'm in the UK!). I have schizoaffective disorder, so like to post threads about mental health and spirituality. I will pray for your son, as well as for you and your husband Smiley
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« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2013, 10:56:33 AM »

All of your words are so interesting to me.  I believe I do have a new group of spiritual friends.  I miss the people I worked with when I worked for the Church.  Especially when we first began our journey of faith together.  Our leader was a Franciscan priest, but, I don't think it was of Assisi.  I'll need to check that out.  He was very open to new ideas and centering prayer as I recall.  I'll be back.
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« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2013, 11:36:49 AM »

Note that John is a Secular Franciscan, and I'm in the process to become one.  It takes 27 months in our chapter before I can profess; 1 month down 26 to go.  I think the journey will be as fun as the destination; I enjoy meeting with people with whom I can talk about faith, in-person.

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« Reply #15 on: May 26, 2013, 05:45:47 PM »

Thank you Shan, I appreciate your prayers for my son and I.  You will also be in my prayers.  One thing I don't understand about my son is his hate and distrust for Doctors.  It usually triggers a psychotic episode from him if a Doctor finds something that could be helped with surgery.  Now, he refuses any kind of help with his eyes.  He might be helped by hard contacts, but, he probably need a cornea transplant.  He's blind in one eye and his other eye is heading the same direction.  Do you experience or have you experienced this mistrust of Doctors?
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Linda Clare
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« Reply #16 on: May 26, 2013, 06:39:46 PM »

Actually, I was just joking!  Sometimes I'm just so appreciative of a good massage and another silly story.
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Linda Clare
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