Ernie Jackson

Ernie Jackson

Sunday, 05 May 2019 21:55

Nobody is Lost!

Recently, noticing many refer to their transitioned children as lost, I began to notice the phrase over and over, and over; “I lost my daughter…,” “I lost my son…” My mind wondered, where did this usage begin and when did it become so mainstream.  In reviewing some of my own writings, I am a bit dismayed that I did the same.  Naturally, I looked up the definition of the word.  In the Random House Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged Edition published in 1966 the definition of lost “(adj.) 1. No longer possessed or retained: lost friends. 2. No longer to be found: lost articles”. Digging a little further in the Word document, a synonym for death is loss.  What?  This isn’t what happens at all.  The use of the word and synonym presumes there is nothing after crossing over, which we know isn’t true.  Nobody is lost!

Grieving the transition of a loved one is hard enough. The grieving process can be hell on earth without support from family, friends and those who know the path without getting into a conversation of acceptable words to describe where our loved ones are. Even with the support of the angels in our lives it is the most difficult part of being a spiritual being having a human experience; however, perhaps the difficult process could be made less tortuous if there was some education before enduring it.  I guess this is the part that grates me; why are we not properly prepared for this eventuality?  Why aren’t we given a glimpse of the bigger picture, before we have to grapple with our loved one going home?

While here in the United States we have freedom of religion, the many branches of Christianity are still the dominant religion. According to a Gallup news poll, 78% of all adults identify with a Christian faith.  Jesus speaks upon being eternal, as an example look to Luke 10:25-37; an expert in the law sought to test Jesus by asking “what must I do inherit eternal life?”  As part of the discussion Jesus told the expert the parable of the Good Samaritan which illustrated that love and acceptance for all people is at the heart of what it means to have eternal life.  But, just what does the word, eternal mean?  In using the same dictionary mentioned above, “adj. 1. Lasting forever; without beginning or end. 2. Perpetual; ceaseless; endless.” I think it reasonable to expect that Christians understand we are eternal, but in understanding we are eternal, where and how does one get lost when transitioning?  How does one get lost when crossing the veil?  How does one die and get lost, when we are eternal? 

While I strongly suspected that most in the country identified with Christianity, I didn’t realize that according to the one poll I quoted, it was 78%. Having very limited exposure to organized religion up until after Quinton transitioned, I didn’t truly understand what being eternal even meant; it was just a concept or thought that didn’t apply – until it did.  It was our son, Quinton, who showed me, which is totally mind blowing.  Our son “died” and illustrates with his signs and visits that he isn’t dead at all – meaning he is eternal.  As I tried to understand more and discover why I didn’t already know being eternal was even possible, I began to read.  Much to my surprise, I discovered, being eternal is effectively common knowledge even for some who don’t consider themselves religious, or maybe better said, I found this knowledge in books that were not about religion or Christianity.

One of the very first books that came to me, it was given to me within a month of the accident, was Many Lives, Many Masters written by Brian Weiss, M.D.  In this, his first book, he wrote in the preface, “I distrusted anything that could not be proved by traditional scientific methods.” This was before he had a patient that in eighteen months none of the traditional techniques he utilized could help her overcome her “anxiety, panic attacks and phobias”.  It was only then he tried hypnosis did his patient “recall past-life memories that proved to be the causative factors of her symptoms.” His work with this patient resulted with a radical paradigm shift for him; he wanted to share but was afraid his career would be ruined, but finally he did.  He learned we live more than one “life”, and thusly, exist between lives. The simple and beautiful truth of his discovery is, it applies to everyone!  But in his discovery, tell me where is the “lost”? 

There are dozens, if not hundreds of books that shout it from the mountain tops – There is no death; nobody is lost and we are eternal! And then we have our own personal experiences with the signs we received from our loved ones.  Dead people don’t send us signs and neither to do the lost; only the living send us signs.

I will endeavor to no longer use that word to describe a spirit casting aside their human bodies, and I invite you to do the same.


Saturday, 20 April 2019 20:19

I Am Not Going Back

I refuse to go back, back to a belief system that does not serve me, but does serve others. I will not go back to thinking I am a second class citizen because of the color of my skin and that my birth certificate says “Negro”.  I will not go back to thinking I am less than because I don’t have expensive toys or live on the wrong side of the tracks.  I will never again think, I am less than.

We live in a time where yet again, we are encouraged to notice and point out our differences; anything from the color of our skin, our religion, sexuality or whether male or female, and we have been doing so since the beginning of time. And it continues to blow my mind.  I remember being a boy becoming acquainted with racism, but then I realized there was prejudice against people of differing religions.  It blew my mind as I marveled that folks with different religions (e.g. Catholic & Protestant and actually the list goes on) were of the same color but still found a way to differentiate between each other and dislike one another.  Still this goes on; the divisiveness in our cultural today breaks my heart, but damn it, I am not going back.

Why am I so vociferous? Well, because I experienced a paradigm shift.  Our son, Quinton Stone Jackson, transitioned and then began to visit! He visited and visits in so many different ways, from holding my hand, whispering in my ear, coming to me in the most vivid “dream” and even in other ways.  This changed me and my view of each of us, and then I began to read, in an effort to understand not only how it was even possible that Quinton visits, but why nobody taught me this previously.  I learned even more and I’m not going back.

What if everybody knew they were souls – first and bodies – second? What if they understood that as souls, there are no categories by which we could be divided?  We are not black, yellow, brown, red or white; we are not any particular sect of any religion; we are not male or female; we do not have a political party and neither are we rich or poor. What would happen if we all understood that we are all parts of a greater whole?  I have come to understand that all of this is a very distinct possibility.  Can you imagine how our society could change if all of us refused to be divided again?  I am not going back to my old way of programming, nope, not gonna do it.

What if everybody knew they are eternal and that each of our lives here has purpose? What if everyone understood that we all are on the same path, but just at different points along that path?  Can you imagine the collective paradigm shift?  As each and every one of us live our lives, we meet people just like this; folk that are above it all is some way, not bothered by any of it while sharing sound advice or a kind word without asking anything in return.  They are further down the path than we are, but we too will get there.

What if, everyone knew there truly was no death? Ha!  Can you imagine?  What if all of us knew our time here – this time – was only a blink of an eye and while here we should enjoy every moment and cherish every lesson no matter how difficult. What if all of us had a greater grasp of the concept of karma, understanding that as we have harmed and mistreated others, we too shall be harmed and mistreated even if that happens in the next lifetime, so we learn to treat everyone with love and respect while realizing our own magnificence.  What if, when a loved one transitions, we understood we haven’t lost them because they exist still, as will we?

Having read much and been exposed to a wide variety of experiences off the beaten path, I have come to believe that all it is quite true. And, damn it, I am not going back to how I thought before.


Not Going Back

Wednesday, 10 April 2019 08:19

God's Work: Sharing Knowledge

Interesting journey and I find myself quiet again. No longer on fire with sharing this divine knowledge, I have no choice but to turn inward yet as I travel, on occasion I share. 

My current way of earning a living takes me to El Paso a couple of times a month, where I have three medical office buildings I am involved with operationally and for leasing. I get to interface with venders associated with the properties, an engineer, tenants and the executive team for the hospital.  Over the course of the past year I have discussed our journey with grief and enlightenment with the engineer.  I even shared the first book with him, for the benefit of a friend of his whose son had transitioned within the past three years.  Then it hit close to home.

Earlier this year, my engineer’s step son transitioned under difficult circumstances. We were at lunch afterward, him and I.  He needed to talk as he was carrying a burden of guilt, wishing he could have done more for his step son and if he had, maybe unfortunate circumstances of his passing could have been avoided.  He needed to talk and I listened, and assured him that his step-son was fine and that he would send him signs.  He seemed a little skeptical, but I could feel a difference in him afterward.

Approximately four months passed and last week, as he sat across from me at my desk he started talking about finding a picture someplace it didn’t belong. I started paying closer attention.  He was kind of rambling and didn’t mention whose picture it was.  As he continued, he said the picture had been tucked, forgotten, around the frame of a mirror, but the other day he found the picture someplace it had no business being.  I guessed the picture was of his step-son and he confirmed it was.  He completed the exchange by asking what I thought about the whole thing.  I replied, “You answered your own question by even asking me what I thought.”  I told him it was his step-son sending him a sign and letting him know that he was more than just fine, he was alive and well across the veil.  The engineer said, “I hope you are right.”  I let him know that I knew I was.  Things like that don’t just happen without reason.

I was exhausted when I made it home that night. I had been fighting a cold and was just plain worn out.  Somehow I managed to tear Q’s truck up while attempting to back into my single garage stall.  It was very odd and very weird; I just had a moment where I kind of blacked out.  After setting the brake, opening the truck door to get out and pull in the passenger side mirror, suddenly I felt movement the next thing I knew, there was a crunch and the driver side door was pinned backward.  I initially could not comprehend what had happened, but realized the truck was still in reverse.  I was about to go down the woe is me trail, but realized it could have been worse if I had been already outside of the vehicle when it started moving.  If that had happened, I could have been pinned between the side of the house and truck door.

The next day I was on the phone with an insurance adjuster, explaining what had happened and shared that is was in all likelihood, Quinton that saved me from being crushed. Obviously I shared some of our journey and then, she shared hers.  What comes next is the good stuff and what happens when you share with others.  Her name was Carol and she shared that as her Dad neared the time for him to take the journey home (transition), his Father-in-Law (already on the other side) stopped in for a visit.  Everybody in her Dad’s hospital room took notice of his attention to an unseen individual and that he had perked up; they asked and he told them who he was speaking with.

Again and again, this is what is normal – all we have to do is talk about it. Guess I will continue to do just that.  Close the loop; what does this all mean?  It means there is no death and that we continue on in a different form after shedding our bodies.  This drama we are fed, means nothing in and of itself.  The deeper decision is, what will each of us do in the face of it?  Will we let it demoralize us or be an agent for Good?


Wednesday, 10 April 2019 08:01

What is Next

Quinton’s ten year angleversary is nearly here; maybe that is why I have gone inward, reflecting and reaching deeper. I remember like it was yesterday, the accident, the signs and the epiphanies; and I remember the reading of oh so many books.  All together, they were a splashing of bright and vibrant color on the blank canvas of my soul, in my absolute darkest hour.  While the signs and epiphanies lifted my spirits, the reading helped me begin to focus my attention and begin to make sense of how it all was possible.

Down the rabbit hole I leapt, just like many of you. The sensation of Quinton holding my hand thirty hours after he transitioned and his coming to a Medicine Man five days after the accident to get a message to us, fueled my journey.  We didn’t have Helping Parents Heal, so I went to a well-known book store, the Tattered Cover on Colfax in Denver, selecting books that spoke to me.  While reading the first book, I came across a passage that compared death to coming home from a long day, going into your closet and striping off your dirty clothes and getting into something more comfortable; only with death we go home and peel off our physical bodies.  This impacted me so profoundly as it illustrated death is only a transition, a crossing a threshold, a peeling off of a physical body and then a continuation in a different form.  For me, somehow afraid of even the concept of death at the time, this thought was completely incredible.  And so the journey began in earnest, as does yours.

Over the years, I have noticed truth can be found anywhere, in non-fiction and fiction alike, for instance, take the Celestine Prophecy. Again, understand the mindset.  I was looking for information, for answers and for a deeper understanding of how Quinton was still alive and able to send me signs. My hunger for this knowledge was insatiable; I read what I was called to read and read what was given to me in most cases.  Celestine Prophecy falls in the latter category.  It was this book, by James Redfield that identified the significance of coincidences, as they most typically indicate a connection to something or a message of some kind.  As an example of how this works, when you think of your loved one on the other side, suddenly a butterfly, or humming bird or dragon fly or anything for that seems unusual suddenly appears. For many, the thought is – what a coincidence, but we know better now, don’t we.

The reading was vital to me for a season, a season lasting possibly five years. During that time, there was another key element to my processing the information and pain.  Physical exercise helped me immeasurably because even though an amazing community wrapped both Kristine and I in its arms, we still were not connected to Helping Parents Heal.  The physical exertion helped my purge some of the grief as I grunted, groaned and felt the high from the endorphins.  We talk of Light and Love, of Knowledge and Peace, but still we must cry or do something to process the heaviness of grief.  The fellowship of speaking with others on this path was equally beneficial.

Ten years later, the quiet returns. Having grown tired of the sound of my voice, being outside with nature, sitting in silence and listening, feeling, enjoying and noticing all that is going on around me – is a welcoming Peace.  You see, we already KNOW, and in that knowing, now I endeavor to just BE.  We know that Quinton IS but a thought away; we know how to hear him when that faint whisper or sign comes. We have a greater sense of why we remain and recognition that sometimes it is he on the keyboard or quietly in my head with ideas of how to help others or what must be shared. 

What comes next? An even greater sense of peace and an even greater sense of just being, while being present to hear from our son; and this I wish for you as well.  Our children are but a focused thought away, and with their whispers, may your Knowing and Inner Peace multiplied untold times.


Saturday, 16 March 2019 20:38

The Work

The irony of this journey does not escape me. I, like everybody else on the planet, am not perfect.  Fundamentalists would have me say I am born in sin.  This statement rubs me raw as the infamous “they” say the same of Quinton.  On the other hand, in taking a higher perspective, a perspective above the dogma and divisive commentary, I understand what “they” are trying to say.  They are trying to say, none of us are perfect and all of us come here because we have something to learn, experience and do.  In saying it that way, is it any more palatable? Well, it is for me.

In this place of being less than perfect, although I have made mistakes, hurt others and am constantly moving in repeating cycles. Through it all, at times I have been of service.  That being of service expanded after Quinton transitioned and showed me There is so very much More, through his visits and signs.  How is that for irony? It took Quinton’s transition to open my eyes. I really had no choice, other than to leap down the rabbit hole, past the dogma, to understand how it was all possible.  What I discovered was a much broader vision of our reality, a broad vision that encompasses every single human being on the planet and every spirit not currently incarnated.  It is a beautiful vision.

For much of my adult life, I remember saying, “Either you are part of the solution or part of the problem.” That is right, I actually would say this at times, while Quinton was still with us and now that Quinton is in spirit (and still with us).  The truth of this statement is even more relevant. This thought is very much related to the Cherokee story about two wolves battling for dominance; one embodies anger, greed, insecurities, hate, and fear while the other embodies love, forgiveness, peace, and gentleness.  The question is which one wins and the answer is, the one you feed.  So, am I part of the solution or part of the problem?  And being human, the answer is I am both at times, but I would like to say I am over the fifty-four years in this version of myself, I have improved.

In this place, there are choices. Do I continue even trying or do I slip into the background?  Lord knows, slipping into the background is all too easy, the proverbial, head to the hills and forget about it all.  Within that thought and the peace within it, I am called to serve.  Hmmm – even more irony.  The phone rings and I find myself on three Boards of Directors.  Two of them are relevant to my theme here, Helping Parents Heal and The Unity of Phoenix Spiritual Center.

The Mission Statement for HPH is as follows: Helping Parents Heal is a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting bereaved parents, giving them the support and resources to aid in the healing process. We go a step beyond groups by allowing the open discussion of spiritual experiences and evidence for the afterlife in a non-dogmatic way.

The Mission Statement for the Unity of Phoenix Spiritual Center is: Unity of Phoenix Spiritual Center is a loving spiritual community that welcomes all people and honors all paths to God. We are dedicated to transforming lives by inspiring and awakening individuals to discover God’s Spirit within them.

I am sure the see similarities and given you are on Quinton’s website, I expect you see both mission statements are lock step and consistent with what we learned after Quinton transitioned. This is the easy part as I still attempt to serve, help others see a broader view of our time here in this version of ourselves and the institutions that do the same.  In being part of both these Boards, I am working with eagles and in doing so I have the opportunity for even more personal growth as I work with organizations who also committed to help others see something of a larger picture, those who are ready to see.

My wish for you is to keep moving forward, keep learning and keep growing. It isn’t easy; it is challenging.  It is too easy to stagnate, fall prey to the bad news broadcast throughout the news and social media, and give up.  However, the silent majority not reported on is growing, learning, and are helping others in every way imaginable.  They are being part of the solution both for their own spiritual growth and for those of others.  At the end of the day, it is a choice. 

Which wolf are you feeding, day in and day out, minute by minute?



Sunday, 10 March 2019 21:41

Sometimes I Wonder

Sometimes I wonder, how many times can I say it; how many times can I tell you this wonderful truth, a truth that for those who haven’t experience it, it doesn’t even register. This most Divine and Wonderful truth that our transitioned loved ones whisper in our ear, show us in dreams and send with the most subtle and or incredible signs.  How many times can I say it?  How many even hear?

Grief is the most awful experience. Some stay there, not being able to lift their heads up, unable to reach out for support or maybe reject the support offered – and that is okay for there is no judgement.  For others, there is support from loved ones, friends and those who have walked through the torturous path of grief emerging to put out the flames and Stand.  Here we stand, with arms open wide, sharing knowledge, comfort and an ear to listen as you unload what must be unloaded. 

I hope and I pray, once this divine knowledge pierces your consciousness that you then begin your journey. We can journey together, but it is a personal journey too.  What does this mean in your individual life; what does it mean for you that your loved one has transitioned, yet here you remain.  Remaining here is a gift, when you keep moving forward and I implore you to move forward or to be more accurate, journey down the rabbit hole of a broader view of the human experience.  This is what our transitioned children, and other loved ones from the other side, show us a glimpse of. 

What comes next isn’t merely about enduring or surviving. Whether you want to hear it or not, all of it has purpose.   Our kids show us, there is no death, period.  Our kids show us, life is eternal, period.  And to think, for many of us, we only come about this knowledge via having a loved one transition, then start sending us signs, communicating in some way and visiting us in those crystal, clear and lifelike “dreams”.  We remain here because we have more to learn, more to experience and more to share – truth.  Even if you don’t want to learn more, I implore you to take the step, because there is more beyond the grieving, the signs and the mediums.  Are you willing to travel down that path your child has set you upon?

As you travel down that path, you may learn about soul contracts and soul groups. As you travel you may hear and learn about reincarnation. You may hear and learn about young souls and old souls.  You may learn about past lives and for some, maybe even future lives.  There is purpose to our time here, even though knowing this may be so challenging initially.  For so many of us, we had a contract with our children, made before we incarnated, that they would transition early to help us to wake up in some way and make even more of our time here. 

How many think this is crazy? How many think I am a fool?  Well, I am so sorry – what I write about, after having read about all of it and experiencing some of it, is the only thing that makes sense.  I am so sorry, I can’t and I won’t go back to how I thought before.  What was important will never be as important again.  And still, I too have to choose, do I stand still or do I keep going deeper.

Initially, for many of us, they journey started with reading. For me, after Quinton began visiting, I knew that I had to attempt to find out how doing so was even possible.  I discovered, There Is No Death.  Now I say to you, dead people don’t send us signs, only the living do - period.  I started with every book by Brian Weiss, MD and every book by Michael Newton, Ph.D. and by James Van Praagh.  These fed and nourished me, and kept me on the path.  But for you, it could be Robert Schwartz, Gary Schwartz and Suzanne Giesemann; or it could be Raymond Moody, Anita Moorjani and Jonathan Ellerby; or Mark Ireland and Mark Pitstick.  Find something that speaks to you, that puts you on the path and keeps on the path your loved ones set you upon.  Believe it or not, you agreed to this crazy journey before you even came here – this time. Truth

God Bless and Namaste

Sunday, 27 January 2019 09:35

Tina Dougoud - She is Home Now

I am the oldest of three children; my other two siblings are sisters, one is three years younger and the other is eight years younger than I. And now we dance with grief again.  I feel for my Mom and my remaining sister.

My middle sister, Tina Dougoud had a tough life from the start. Nothing came easy for her and she sometimes bore the brunt of our father’s anger because she looked a little bit different than the rest of the family, but she was 100% family.  I have learned so much over the years and have a rudimentary understanding of how the distribution of genes can be different from sibling to sibling.  Tina’s journey with being different was not spiritual. She was the black sheep of our family, but still you could see her light, at times anyway.  I remember just before we moved from New Jersey, I thought I saw progress in her, but when we arrived in Colorado, a new setting was too much for her and the progress was lost.

Throughout junior high school and high school Tina’s journey only became more challenging. When I went away to college she was in and out of detention centers, becoming unrecognizable to me on rare occasions when I did see her. I didn’t think highly of her and said as much to others who would chastise me for being judgmental or cruel.  She came back into the family a few of times with the entire family trying to help her with a job or housing, but whenever she was in our lives, she put all of us into turmoil with her manipulative ways.  In 1988, I invited her out of my life.

More than twenty years passed and it was Bill Lambert (my junior high tech arts teacher and track coach) who we were visiting with after Quinton transitioned that pushed me to reconnect, and I did. We visited in Phoenix and had a wonderful conversation, quite spiritual in fact. We stayed in sporadic contact as time passed, but soon she only called when she needed money.  I knew the score and loaned her some money, which was never paid back.   Still though when we did speak I would encourage her to beat her addictions and encourage her to keep trying.  There is so much love in her; I can see it in her eyes and hear it in her voice.  She was proud of us, proud of me to break the bonds we were exposed to all those many years ago.  It was good to see her, when we did.  Our last in depth conversation came a year or two ago.  She needed to talk and even though I was frustrated with her frequent relapses, I encouraged her yet again.  I wished her well and told her I loved her.

Late Saturday evening, January 12th I received two messages indicating Tina had been found face down in the snow, in a Walmart parking lot in northern Denver.  How long she had been there in the snow, we will never know, but at this point it appears that it may have been hours.  She was found, taken to the hospital, but never regained consciousness.  Within hours of the news, on Sunday morning, Tina sent me the most beautiful sign, letting me know she was alive and well on the other side.  I recognized it immediately.  My screen saver on my monitor rotates the hundreds of pictures saved on the computer, one at a time.  When I walked into my home office early in the morning and immediately saw 6 pictures in a row with Tina in them flash by on my monitor and I knew her journey here was over, and I was happy for her.

Why even write this sad tale, you may ask. Well, because there are not rules to how any of this works.  All of us are eternal and any of us can receive a sign from a loved one on the other side, and anyone on the other side can send a sign.  Our challenge is to recognize the sign. 

God Bless you Tina; you are home, we love you and we honor you.


P.S. What a beautiful sign you sent to Regina.  Truly amazing!  You are a special soul, Tina!

Tina and Kristine

Family pics 1.20.19

The evening of January 15th, I was on Karl Fink program Streaming for the Soul to discuss forgiveness and the signs from our loved ones across the veil that so beautifully illustrate there is no death, only a transition to another form.  During the initial airing of the program, Jann Kraus was watching.  Jann is a certified hypnotherapist and past life regression therapist who has been actively teaching and doing light work for 47 years.  She gave me permission to share the below.

Approximately four years ago Jann went to a very good medium named Julie. During that reading both her mother and grandmother had shown up to speak with her, but there was a young boy who showed up as well.  He was so excited, jumping all over the place in fact, so much so her mom and grandmother in spirit could barely get a word in.  The boy was about 8 years old and thanked Jann for “helping him”.  Jann struggled to connect the dots, initially not even knowing who he could be, but when she hung up she remembered something her son had shared with her within two months prior to her reading with Julie.

Her son’s wife was a minister and actively involved with counseling two families, one of whom had a son (Spencer) dying of cancer and the other family had a son with a mildly autistic condition. The two boys ended up being best friends.  Spencer would encourage his friend by telling him he had “super bots” that made him strong and kept anyone from hurting him. The day came that nothing else could be done for Spencer and his family took him home for his transition and soon, he became non-responsive.  Arrangements were made to bring Spencer’s best friend to see him, but he remained unresponsive until his friend mentioned “super bots” and told him that they would now make him strong – and Spencer opened his eyes, the two friends locked gazes, and then Spencer transitioned.

Jann’s son shared the above with her and it broke her heart. Jann cried and prayed for Spencer, his family and for his best friend.  In her prayer to Spencer she “recalled telling Spencer to look for a bright light and that we was safe and that Jesus would find him.”  As she realized he was the little boy who dropped in during the session with the medium, she marveled how all of it came together.  She was in a complete state of awe that she, a perfect stranger’s caring and prayer can actually help someone on the other side!  This was a wonderful lesson for her, as she stated in her letter to me, but a wonderful lesson for me as well.

Here at Helping Parents Heal, we help you come to terms with your child’s transition and eventually come to realize that they continue to exist in a different form. We do this by giving you a safe place to discuss the signs, signs that come in all manner of ways.  A person has to be living to send us a sign!  Life continues and there is a continuity of life.  The above incident drives that home yet again.  We are energy, we are spiritual beings having a human experience which segues directly to the power of prayer.  I don’t know about you, but I have to meditate on that a bit to let that sink in.  I understood we could affect each other energetically here in the physical realm, but haven’t given it much thought that we could do the same to our loved ones across the veil.  This is truly incredible for some of us and for others – they have known it all along.

We are wishing you the best for the New Year! May your year be filled with epiphanies and purpose, for we are still here, so each of us has a purpose as we continue to learn and experience the Divine.


Wednesday, 02 January 2019 07:15

My New Shoulder

For nearly thirty years, or maybe more, my left shoulder has given me fits. On our first date nearly twenty-seven years ago, I bumped Kristine on her head as I tried to put my arm around her while at a movie.  Why she kept seeing me and eventually marrying me, I will never really fully understand.

Nearly three decades have passed and in those decades I had two procedures. The first was an orthoscopic surgery and the second was called a “hemi”, where the end of my humerus was replaced with titanium that I affectionately called a door stop.  When I had that surgery, some twelve years ago or so, Dr. Steven Traina told me, next time it will be a full replacement.  Next time arrived, after putting it off for as long as I could, to the point of using the arm less and less.

Things have changed so much. I went in to an orthopedic surgeon in Phoenix (Dr. Tyler Collins) and basically told him what I needed to have done, and he asked when do you want to have surgery?  We picked a date and I began to prepare mentally and spiritually.  You see, I was consistently being told a shoulder replacement was the most difficult of the replacements.  Interestingly, when I told some what I was going to have done, they would look sad; shake their head and say, “I am sorry”.  My response was, “thanks”.  So I prepared for hell on earth and I prepared for the toughest test of my life.

I have already been through hell on earth, obviously. Through the fires of experiencing Quinton transition came the most amazing experiences and realization that we are all eternal.  With this knowledge, I look at each and every challenge, accident and bit of bad news as a learning experience.  With this knowledge in hand, I was ready. 

Surgery was November 2nd and I had been advised very forcefully to begin the pain management program before the nerve block wore off.  I was told of numerous wives who had called the doctor about thirty six hours after their husband’s surgery in a panic because their spouse was in unbelievable pain.  The common denominator in each instance was they had felt so good that they did not begin the pain management as instructed.  That would have been me ten years ago or so, but now older and wiser, I understand that the rules and advice apply to me too.  You see, I am not super human, even though I thought I was all those years ago.

Much to my surprise, everything went smooth. I followed instructions regarding pain management and was off the meds in a week, then started physical therapy exactly two weeks after surgery.  Three weeks after surgery I ditched the sling and asked during every step, what can I do and what shouldn’t I do at this point.  Seven weeks after surgery I asked and was told that could push it, as far as reps, just nothing more than ten lbs.  Eight weeks after surgery, during a PT session I had a bit of an epiphany as I continued to notice how my shoulder is becoming stronger and more flexible.  My epiphany was, it wasn’t about the weight I was using, but it was about being consistent and being grateful.

This seems so simple and obvious, but the epiphany was powerful. I am an individual that has accomplished much, but measure each day’s activity by what was accomplished in the past with the end result being disappointed with where I am now and giving up the path.  Does this make sense?  So here I am in Physical Therapy for my new shoulder being grateful and pleased that I can lift my arm at all.  Here I am being grateful for the slightest improvement as now I am able to lift my arm while holding a 1 lb. weight.  This is where it hit me.  The journey isn’t about how much lift or to what heights I reach; it is about being consistent with my activity as I move to an intended outcome, and being grateful.  So simple and in this simplicity, there is no reason for disappointment, only consistent movement forward and through whatever obstacles arise. 

My shoulder is doing great and thank you for asking. I already have a better range of motion than I have had in decades and it has only been two months.  While still weak, my strength is slowly improving a day at a time.  All I need to do is be consistent with my activity relating to my arm, my goals in life while enjoying all the blessings heaped upon us over the years and have faith that it will all workout. What is ironic is, in this place of peace, more Good arrives.

And so it is…

Wednesday, 02 January 2019 07:06

Our Power and Our Responsibility

I don’t remember being fixated with trees during the first twelve years of my life, living in New Jersey, maybe because there were trees everywhere. Big deciduous tree forests that grew fast and dropped a lot of beautifully colored leaves in the fall; trees were just there and I probably took them for granted.  That changed when we moved to Colorado.

I had just turned twelve years old when we moved. We had visited the year prior while on vacation and I was captivated by the Rocky Mountains.  When we moved a year later, we settled in Conifer at about 8,300 hundred feet above sea level.  Our two acres had been part of a pea farm, or so we were told, so we had zero trees on the lot or pretty much in the immediate community.  After growing up with trees everywhere, the entire family found this odd, but for some reason it especially irked me.

Through the turmoil called my family, in those seemingly rare moments of tranquility, at times we would come together, once to plant couple of trees. However, the growing season at 8,000 feet plus above sea level in Colorado was considerably shorter that at sea level in New Jersey.  Most of the trees we planted lived, but they grew incredibly slow.  I watched and watered them, and checked them constantly. By the time I was gone, the trees while still alive, they hadn’t grown much at all, but I was hooked.

When I arrived to Phoenix, I realized it was very hot and I quickly learned the significance of shade. And so my passion for trees began in earnest.  When I purchased my first house, I researched a bit and planted a Goldwater Pine. This tree originated in Southwestern Asia, thrives in heat, drought and wind and is extremely fast growing.  I planted the tree myself, kept it fertilized and watered it on a regular basis.  Daily I was out looking at the tree, monitoring it, assessing the new growth and watching it grow.  Often, due to water, fertilizer the tree would grow three feet a year.  I have since realized there was another key ingredient.  When I sold the house and we moved, the tree and subsequent trees I had planted died.  Note to residents in the desert southwest, although trees may look healthy, they will always need to be watered on a regular basis.

Our next house was on a cul-de-sac on a third of an acre. The back yard was huge and naturally, given we were in a new subdivision, it was treeless.  You know what I did; I planted trees, thirty nine in total.  Of the thirty-nine, twelve were queen palms around the new pool, two fruit trees and the rest pine’s.  These trees were my passion.  I would walk around the yard several times a week and assess their health while monitoring the rapid growth.  My mom and sister reminded me of a story that I had actually forgotten. They had coordinated with Kristine to surprise me with a visit and unbeknownst to me, they were hidden inside our home when I arrived.  They heard the garage open and close, and waited to jump out at me in our bedroom, only I never came.  They waited and waited; finally my Mom went searching for me and found me in the backyard.  She watched as I made the rounds, one tree at a time.  At each tree I would stop and envelope them with love.  She crept silently behind me and asked, “Do they talk back to you?” 

Good times and even better memories; this is me in my element, but recently I realized that there is a parallel. It is going to sound obvious, but the same applies to those we meet whether that is a child (especially a child in fact) or someone hurting in some way.  We are all energetic beings and we affect each other energetically, sometimes only a little and at other times a lot. This is a beautiful truth and an amazing power we have.  With it, we can comfort, help and support each other.  And with this power comes grave responsibility, especially with children and those hurting in some way.  Let us strive together to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem.

Let us help one another on this journey.

Happy New Year!


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