Born a Miracle: The Story of a Man

By Kevin Ishimwe | Featured Contributor


1994 was the year…
All odds stacked against me,
mother in agony

my future seemed so uncertain
she wondered if I will ever live
to tell my story.

Determined to pacify the fear
hovering my beloved country,

She found delight in the Most High
to get her through her darkest moments
clinging on to faith,
she followed the path set before her

to bring me into this world
by any means necessary.
Her dream realized, she called me
Miracle of the Most High.

So now I’m living my life
like I’m on the clock

Making the most
of every moment

Grateful for the purpose
laid out before me

Rising to every knock,
before my clock runs out

Like I’m on my last go around

Just to let her know that her birth pains were worth it.

Continue reading “Born a Miracle: The Story of a Man”

Why I Love the Morning – A Poem

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


It’s the quiet…
the ease of peace
that permeates –
just as the light gently travels
through the trees
and into my soul.

It’s the anticipation…
of yet another chance
for lessons to take root –
and new directions
to unfold.

It’s the trust…
that all the days past
have been worth any pain,
and there are no regrets
which can darken this new light.

It’s the love…
that gratitude which shimmers
and brightens my vision
to just how blessed it is
to have this life,
this very day.

I am but a bird singing,
a flower opening,
a cat purring,
and a baby giggling.
Mornings have this affect on me.
They elate.

*     *     *

Continue reading “Why I Love the Morning – A Poem”

The Small Things: A Reminder for Today

By Surakshya Kiju (Coco) | Featured Contributor


The small things in life aren’t really all that small.
They’re the things that make life real.
Takes your happiness to a whole new level.
Keeps you from feeling lost in an empty world.

We try so hard but we’re only human.
We can’t help it. We’re always on the run.
Always trying to meet expectations.
To label you as rose and not the thorn.

But when you find something that makes you forget it all;
A passion, a hobby or even alcohol
that pulls you through the tragedies that befall,
then how can you label that something as small?

Something that makes you live in the now.
Something you connect with without any vows.
Something that you think the world of.
Something that gives you meaning of love.


We only have one life. One chance to do it all. To do everything that we want, to enjoy living to the fullest. So why are we wasting it on the worries of tomorrow? Especially when we know that worrying isn’t gonna change anything at all. Most of the things we worry about end up not happening at all. All worrying about tomorrow does is steal away your present. So why don’t we live in the now instead and leave tomorrow’s worry for tomorrow?

Continue reading “The Small Things: A Reminder for Today”

The Broken Mind: Living with Bipolar Disorder

By Dre from Jerz | Featured Contributor


As a man in his early 40’s, coping with bipolar disorder and manic depression has been a major struggle. But through an open understanding and a willingness to learn, mental health issues can become manageable.

It all started in my late twenties. I was sitting on my twin-sized bed listening to one of my favorite hip hop CD’s. After a breakup with a young lady at the time and in between menial jobs, my mind was in a fragile state. I would play this particular CD on repeat from evening to morning. Not realizing it at the time, but internally I had snapped to the point my brainwaves shifted into an altered phase.

Continue reading “The Broken Mind: Living with Bipolar Disorder”

Climb In

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


Come float with me, dear one.
Climb into my boat.
I will grab your hand
and lift you in.
We can ride this out together.
The current will take us in its way
but we can see a new shore
over there.

If we work together,
we can point the boat
and use our muscles
to reach that new
and beautiful land.
The journey may be hard –
but inch by inch,
wave by wave,
we will make it.

So, climb in.
The invitation is clear.
Together we are safe.
We can make it
because we are strong.
Float with me.

Let’s rise above the current.

Continue reading “Climb In”

Dreams of a Better Tomorrow

By Felix Odhiambo | Featured Contributor


I have dreams of a better tomorrow.

Dreams
that we will hold hands
and dance with our feet.

We have won.

Dreams
that we will rejoice again and again
after the hollow we have had in our hearts.
Dreams
that the days we used to have
will come back.
And the sky will wash away our pains,
the stars will show us the way,

I am the dreamer,
but you and I form the dreams
I have seen tomorrow
with my eyes closed
I have felt it
with my heart beating
And now I have spoken
of my silent dreams,

That a day is yet to come,
we will no longer stay at home
We will hug our neighbors
and kiss our loved ones
We will no longer preach
of washing our hands with sanitizers
And not touching
our beautiful faces,

Life will give us a chance
to make merry like we used to
We will form crowds
and praise the living God
Every night I walk
on better dreams of tomorrow
And they are not
just faded dreams
A time is yet to come,
we will sing songs of Zion,

We have won.

And COVID will remain to be history.

Continue reading “Dreams of a Better Tomorrow”

Attacked: A Poem on Anxiety

By Riya Bhatia | Featured Contributor


Note from Author: This was written when I was experiencing one of my worst anxiety attacks. Instead of running away from it, I decided to embrace it and use my words as a means of understanding myself better.

*   *   *

My breath trembles
as the room seems to be
consuming my soul,
The walls are closing in
and my thoughts are
consuming me whole,
Sweat and tears
dim the shine
and rosiness of my face,
And all they can say
is keep picturing yourself
in a better place,
I’m crippled with fear
and can’t think
beyond this second,
How do I move on
and when will this ever end,

Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.

Hold it for a few seconds.

Keep breathing.

It’ll be alright,
The day will get better
and the sun will shine bright.
My heart starts to race
as tears stream down my cheek,
I can’t concentrate
on a single thing
and keep calling myself weak,

You’re not like this,
you’re strong,
you can do it,
but you’re all wrong,

Focus. Focus. Focus.

Keep focusing on your goals,
it’ll be be okay,
and not take very long.

I’m dizzy and nauseous,
fearful and upset,
how could I let this
happen to myself,

I want to go back to when I was twelve.

Continue reading “Attacked: A Poem on Anxiety”

A Note From Above

By Navnidhi Vyas | Featured Contributor


I was enjoying life
with a secure future,
when suddenly
a dense darkness

came from nowhere,
turned everything
upside down,

and left me
with a lifeless life,
a future with a question mark.

Forced me to write a letter
to the creator of all
with an obvious shame-
where was this thought
when I had it all?

A very long letter
with countless words,
limitless questions,
an exaggeration of misery
was posted to heaven,
expecting a reply
with patience and surprise.

I received a reply.
A note from God
with only two magical words.

Trust Me.

And I looked up at the sky
and held my head high.

Continue reading “A Note From Above”

Why Dating a Woman With a Chronic Illness Is the Best Decision Your Heart Can Make

By Klyn Elsbury | Featured Contributor


I can have a conversation with you about your stressful day while infusing antibiotics straight into my heart through a port-a-cath. I pay attention to your every word when nausea kicks in, asking intelligent follow-up questions, and when you’re relaxed after your stressful day, just ask that you hold my hand. Bonus points if you can bring me a Starbucks en route to the hospital.

I am 32-years-old and have been hospitalized 67 times, ranging in length from one day to six months. The diagnosis is cystic fibrosis and diabetes. The prognosis? Nobody really knows.

I am happily engaged to a healthy man. In fact, he’s so healthy I don’t know if in five years I’ve seen him eat a vegetable that I didn’t force him into. And yet, dating was extremely difficult for me as I grappled with questions on when to tell him about my condition, navigating extended hospitalizations, and yes, even losing my bowels without warning one night.

It’s not uncommon for those with chronic illnesses to be shunned from the dating community. Many have given up entirely and left to feel like ‘used goods’. Even as I researched the article, polling my friends with chronic illnesses, many were reluctant to share their names because if a guy on an app googled them, they would face rejection before they felt it was time to disclose. And I couldn’t help but remember what it was like for me the moment the hot guy I was getting to know decided to type my name into Google, and decided if he was up for the adventure.

Our love story lasts and here are five other reasons that if you’ve been given the news or been contemplating taking the next step with someone with a chronic condition, to give it a go!

Continue reading “Why Dating a Woman With a Chronic Illness Is the Best Decision Your Heart Can Make”

Thirteen Years of Training For A Pandemic

By Don P. | Guest Contributor


On April 28, 2007, my life as I knew it came to an abrupt halt and turned 180 degrees. I had a massive heart attack that day, and a triple bypass surgery the following day. To really make my story special, I then flat-lined over a hundred times during the next twelve or so days, and followed that with a very high drama heart transplant and a five day stint on ECMO (Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) and was conscious (to a degree) while on a ventilator—the single worst memory in my lifetime. (ECMO is a machine that is basically an artificial lung to oxygenate your blood while your lungs rest/heal).

A week after my heart transplant, I regained consciousness and started to rebuild my body and my life, and unbeknownst to me, I was placed in training for this coronavirus pandemic

Continue reading “Thirteen Years of Training For A Pandemic”

Weather

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


When fear is everywhere,
take a breath.
Remind yourself that
as real as the fear feels,
it is a passing storm.
You can see it but
you don’t belong to it.
Remember that you
are not the weather.

You are the sky.

We can choose to be blown away
and knocked off our feet…
or we can choose
to have the compassionate
and wise view from above.

We can be observant
while holding on to
who we really are.
Only by holding fast
to the good in us –

our expansive being –
can we truly be helpful
or even present.

So, keep your eyes open
while patiently riding it out.
Don’t allow yourself to get knocked over
or sucked into the whirlwind.
Be ever-present and calm
just like the blue sky
which endures every storm.

Thank you, Cynthia, for these beautiful and timely words.

Wishing everyone a blessed day.

🌷

 

We Are Needed

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


It takes just a moment
to pause and let go –
to notice.
Presence always waits
patiently for us.
She is found
in the smallest of things…

The slow drip of water
off a rock
which holds
the riverbank in place…
Presence is there.

The thought that gives birth
to the word that spawns a tear…
Yes. There.

In that moment between
the reach of your hand
to the lifting of another –

Or when the homeless man
catches your eye and
a generous smile blooms…
There!

How short our time is.
We squander Presence
like we waste water…
We forget to look,
to hear the slow drip,
to speak the unspoken word.

We get lonely
in this poverty
of connection.

Continue reading “We Are Needed”

To Not Lose Hope

We have highs and we have lows
The power is in our hands
We can dance or
We can cry
It’s up to us
To make the right decision.

Yes it’s hard
Like pushing a wall
That doesn’t seem to move
But once you look back
You’ll see you’ve come so far.

So don’t lose hope
When things are bad
Just hang in there
You are bound to reach
The top of the hill soon.

Victoria Abah

Thank you, Victoria, for these encouraging words.
Let us never lose hope.

Wishing you all a restful weekend.
🌷

Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 3)

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor


[Click for Part 1 and Part 2]

The bandage torn
From new flesh
Releases wails
The wound still
Imbibes air
The scab hides
deep repair
Let it rest. Wait
In time the scar
Records a fate

I learned that healing is a deep process. We may heal a physical wound, but to become whole, we need to heal emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. We need to dig into the old grout of our deep being. Moreover, we must trust help is available.

Continue reading “Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 3)”

You are Free

Just let it go,
let the emotions flow,
Lift your hands
high up in the sky,
and hold so tight,
Move your head
with the wind,
with closed eyes,
Just let it fly away,

You are free.

Felix Odhiambo

Thank you, Felix, for these lovely words.

Wishing everyone a beautiful week.

💙

 

The Beauty We Miss

Stop and smell the roses,
Smell that sweet aroma,
Admire the dew
on each crimson petal,
Simple pleasures
to let sink in and settle.

The beauty that you miss,
can truly be bliss.

Wake up to a gallery
of wonders every morning,
Marvel in every little detail,
it is ever so revitalizing,
In this busy world which we live,
we must remember one thing,

Slow down…life is for savoring.

Duncan Hookey

Thank you, Duncan, for this beautifully penned, timely reminder.

Wishing everyone a lovely day.

🌷

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