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25 Jul

Miracles, Mishaps, and Musings

The Day of Miracles

Nothing short of a miracle, mishap, and musing happened in our life! Our beautiful one-year-old budgie, Jazz, flew out the door and was lost on Wednesday, July 8, 2020 — and it’s a miracle she was found five days later, July 13, by children at a water park — about three kilometres away! Jolly, her mate, was feeling bereft, as were David and I. As you can see by their picture, you can’t get even a toothpick between them. They are so in love.

It's a miracle Jazz is finally foundWhen Jazz flew out the door, I immediately enlisted the help of ROAM (Reuniting Owners with Animals Missing). Within minutes of my reporting that she was lost, ROAM had posted it online, informed other agencies, given us the contact info for all of them, AND created a poster for us, ready to print! WOW!

David and I and our friends must have posted 150 of them, and we posted on our Facebook site to engage prayers from all our friends and family . . . and just when my heart was starting to give up hope, ROAM called! Jazz had been found!!!

as Jazz the budgie flies
“As the budgie flies”

It’s a Miracle That She Was Found Safe!

Jazz was a long way from home. She was found at the waterpark by some great kids who helped her get home to us and her “bird of a feather” Jolly.

HIt's a miracle Jazz was found by children at the Esquimalt Recreation Centerow she flew from James Bay to the Esquimalt Recreation Centre, we’ll never know. Above is a map showing the walking route (blue) and Jazz’s route (yellow) in my imagination. As the budgie flies, it must be about 3 km — and across the ocean!

Jazz endured five days of mostly rainy, cold and windy conditions, and then she was found by children! A true sign of her miracle, mishap and madness.

Meet Sarah, whose three children found Jazzy wandering around the grass and then flying into the wading pool to drink the water!

JazzSarah and Junie with the birds was tired and ready to come home, because she walked right up to Sarah’s shoe!

Sarah was able to easily capture her and keep her safe in a shopping bag till I arrived. We went into the change room and put her into her cage.

I poured the food onto the bottom of the cage and we were off to the vet, where we found that all vital signs were perfect. She was good to go, so I took her home to Jolly. A bit of good loving from her mate is the best medicine ever.

Jolly and Jazzy the perfect pair of budgies

Jolly and Jazzy reunited at last!The first day, she mostly slept, regaining her strength, while Jolly massaged her head. Her sweet loving mate.

I can’t say enough about ROAM. They were all so kind, genuinely caring, and fully results-oriented.

Bless them for the beautiful work they do.

Another incredible part of the story is that Sarah, whose children found Jazz, went to school with my friend Astri’s daughter Ariel. Sarah called Ariel to tell her about finding a budgie at the waterpark, and they figured out that I was the Junie that Ariel knew!

I came bearing gifts of my books to give to Sarah and her children. The next day, Sarah wrote and told me she was up all night reading Write Where You Are — and it was apparently just what the doctor ordered. We have scheduled a playdate for her and her kids to come over and meet Jolly, now that Jazz has fully recovered. It’s a happy story indeed — the rescuers have become our friends!

The miracle moment with Junie and Davie posing with "Found" posters!

Junie and David at Imagine CafeDavid and I totally relaxed at lmagine Cafe after “our baby” Jazz came home.

While we were at the cafe, enthralled with the days miracle, we mapped out our newest project on a napkin — a colouring book for Children of All Ages: Jazz Came Home, a true story of miracles, mishaps and musings.

I’ll write it, and David will illustrate it. We’ll keep the joy of this story happening! Let me know if you want to purchase an advance copy. It’s going to be spectacular!

Junie and her foot cast

The Mishap

Just days after Jazz was safely home and we were breathing peacefully as a family again, I had a ‘freak’ accident. An overweight can fell from the top shelf onto my foot and fractured a bunch of bones. I am now in a walking cast for six weeks.

Junie laying back with relaxingBut you see, this story could easily be written in the above category under “Miracles” as well. Why? Because I was clearly not listening to The Universe’s messages to SLOW DOWN. So God, in her infinite wisdom, delivered me a message I could NOT ignore: “JUNIE, STOP!” So, stopped I am. Well . . . much more than usual, anyway. Pain will do that. Your body requires sleep. FULL STOP.

I never thought I’d be one who’d be sitting and reading a book while my partner does everything! Everything! Hmm . . . one could get used to this! Well, maybe this one. Possibly not David. However, he’s chosen to be my full-time caregiver in every sense of the word without one indication of resentment.

The Miracle and Musings

So, one could ask the question, “How DID Jazzy make it home? What caused that miracle?” I honestly don’t know if what I’m going to say next is arrogance or truth . . . but it’s something I’ve thought about.

David and I live our lives in appreciation and gratitude every day. We keep a joint gratitude journal, and every night before going to sleep, we’ve been writing what we are grateful for that day. We have limited it to five things or we may never hit the pillow.

We see the goodness in everything AND we are human and feel the pain of so much as well. Especially in these unprecedented times of Covid.

Generally speaking, we hold the energy of love, compassion, and joy, side by side with grief and sorrow. On this day the feelings were paired with the feeling of bliss and true miracle.

We both know in our core that everything that happens, happens FOR us, not “to” us. It happens for our soul’s evolution and growth. And we are also quite aware that the miracle of Jazz’s return has to do with the prayers that came in from far and wide from friends and family. Thank you all!

Without my fractured foot, I would be still be carrying on like the Energizer Bunny — rarely slowing down. Although I meditate every day, my days haven’t been balanced. They will be now.

I’m paying attention! This isn’t a temporary healing job — that in six weeks, I’ll be back on the dance floor of life,  jitterbugging my way into programs and non-stop activity. My intention — that I am stating here, out loud — is to choose to live in inspired action, be in nature EVERY DAY, do my Life’s Mission, of course, because it’s what feeds my soul, and say, Thank you, God — for this lifelong lesson.

Writing Prompt

Where in your life do you need to either slow down, re-evaluate, or change a life-long habit before it becomes a two-by-four (or a heavy can) that forces you to make that choice?

Here’s your writing prompt in two parts. Start your timer and write for at least 20 minutes:

1. What I know in my heart I need to change in order to find true peace and freedom is . . .
2. The steps I shall take are . . . and I am willing to set that intention now.

I’m still going ahead with Sunday Sacred Writing Circle on Zoom. Why not join me? I’ll show you the budgies and my foot! Here’s the link to register.

You’re also invited to join Junie’s Writing Sanctuary on Facebook, where you can continue the conversation.

All blessings,
Junie

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05 Jul

Tell someone you love them. Today.

a love letter from junie swadron

The Letter That Made My Day

This week I’m sharing something very personal, a letter that really touched me.

We don’t always know who we will touch when we simply show up with our hearts.

The other day I received an email from one of my very first therapy clients ever – 30 years ago!

Without my knowing it, she found me, subscribed to my newsletter, and wrote me the letter below. I had tears streaming down my face as I read it.

The reason I am sharing it is two-fold (probably more but I’ll keep it to two). ????

One: Because during the Covid period, my moods have been fluctuating all over the map. I’ve been here, there, and everywhere. Gratefully, mostly grounded and happy! Still, I want to be transparent and tell you that it’s not 24/7. Even though I am very capable of showing up for others, and do my work successfully, I have had some serious knee-jerk reactions to triggers that have brought up things from my past.

People in my present-day reality have said and done things that unconsciously reminded me of someone in the past — but they are NOT that person. This has brought up things for me to heal. Oh boy! Luckily, I have the tools. If only I had used those tools as trigger action plans before the event, though, I could have prevented the pain I caused.

Still, it’s how we all learn, grow, transform, and ascend the rungs of that spiritual spiral ladder we are on. We can only grow when we become conscious of our pitfalls and take action steps to correct them. One step at a time. Fall. Get up. Forgive ourselves, others . . . whatever it is. We know the drill.

If you see yourself in what I have described, take out your journal and write. Write into the truth of whatever has come up for you because it will free you! Punctuate it with a forgiveness letter to yourself and/or the ‘other,’ and a loving letter from The Universe to You, reminding you that you are perfect and whole, just the way you are!

Two: I’m sharing this because I would like you to think of someone you can write to this week who has changed your life for the better. Tell them. Please let them know. It will make their day, perhaps their life!

I was carrying so much shame for my recent explosion, that it was very hard to find the goodness in myself. When this email from my past client came in, it reminded me that I am so much more than my judgments of myself. We ALL do this to ourselves and it is not necessary!

I have since written back to my former client Diana and thanked her with all my heart for reaching out to me.

With Diana’s permission, here’s the email she sent to me after she watched the interview I shared in last week’s newsletter. If you haven’t watched the interview yet, it’s not too late! You can view it on YouTube here.

Letter from my client from about 30 years ago (circa 1990):

“Loved the interview Junie. (Junie still sounds strange to me as I have thought about you for years as June!) It was superb. There was no place to comment or I would have done.

I think you were new to the business when I saw you. And I was new to psychotherapy. Your apartment was so welcoming, cats and all, and so were you. Of course.

You got out your application form and I sat across from you and at about the third question I broke down. You then abandoned the form and encompassed me. I sat by you and sobbed out my story about my addicted son, a heroin addict, and you heard me out.

My sessions with you saved my life at that awful time. I had not shared my grief with anyone close to me. Always trying to be the go-to person to everyone else. I hardly shared with my husband the horrors of the day when he came back from the office.

You taught me that I needed to share with him as I needed his help. You taught me a lot as probably one of your first clients. And you had me write a diary or journal. So the seeds of your future were always there.

Writing. Enhanced by your work as a psychotherapist. Bravo, Junie. You came across in that interview as a totally amazing person, an angel in fact, a person anyone in distress would want on their side, in their corner.

I am stunned by the number of different jobs you have done all the while fighting your own battle with bi-polar disorder and abuse as a child. I remember you sharing that with me, too, about your being locked up in a psychiatric hospital. That sharing is so helpful, in fact it is beyond words is what it is.

Please use this letter in any way you need in order to further your work.

Your hair was blonde and you wore a motorcycle jacket when I knew you.

I prefer your silvery curly hair now. It suits you to the ground.

I became a writer, a writing instructor for the Toronto Board, a social service worker — but that got cut short when anything I wrote became published. I did every kind of writing imaginable.

In 2003 I wrote a book of short stories for teenagers which were well reviewed and placed in the top ten teenage novels of that year by the Canadian Library Association. Despite this it died on the shelf!

But I had an email from a high school teacher a few years ago and she said two of her students had been able to come out because she used a coming out story in the book in her grade 12 class. Would you like a copy? I have a lot!! And if so please send me your address.

I hope you live forever and continue to help those in need. You are in fact an angel. And still stunningly beautiful, June.

Diana”


Want to find out what writing from the heart can do for you? Join us on Sunday mornings for Sacred Writing Circle. Here’s the link to register.

You’ll find a lot of friendly writers in Junie’s Writing Sanctuary on Facebook as well, where you can continue the conversation.

All blessings,
Junie

PS — Here’s the interview that Diana watched ⬇️

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[email protected] | 250.813.0183