grace and gratitude as a mindful parent

only an hour before..pristine arm, thumbs up


This weekend felt intense. The overall energy was strong and my anxiety was full and super high. I’m a feeler, a knower, but still don’t quite understand how to work with all the energy that is coming though me. Yesterday seemed to be the most uncomfortable for me, I go into judging myself at first. “I shouldn’t be anxious” I say to myself…”for all you preach..get a hold of yourself girl”.. It’s my automatic responses. Finally when I can be still and recognize what’s at play, I can just “be” with it all. When feeling ungrounded I always tell others to go to your feel good ways of grounding that you’ve already created when you’re feeling well and positive. Mine are meditation, writing/journaling and being alone. So I had our amazing babysitter, Allie over and I left. I sat in my car and wrote, just got still, did some deep breathing,  and had quiet peace.
Prior to leaving Charlie was extremely irritable. Who feels what first? Does he know I’m unhinged or is it me who senses his unraveling? Maybe a bit of both but he was angry and banging his hands on this awful back door of ours that is too old to even understand how it’s still standing. It’s been on “the list” of home repairs but low on the priority ladder.
I said the words…I actually said the words..”Charlie don’t bang on that glass you could put your arm through it”. And that’s exactly what happened last night.
Isla and Charlie were racing each other into the house after a fun evening at LifeTime in the pool. It was that relaxed, soothing feeling of ahhh this is enjoying life…in the moment. Big happy smiles on the kids…me and Al side by side on lounge chairs blissfully watching, relaxing. We had just arrived home in the driveway and Al and I were at the car, Charlie and Isla ran up to the door as they do all the time. We heard a scream that is so telling of emergency. The scream that pierces through your heart…I held my breath as I ran passing Isla who had such a worried look on her face as she said “mamma he needs you”.
My heart was racing, my stomach turning and then I see his face. It’s scrunched up, tears streaming down as he’s crying uncontrollably; holding his arm and not letting go. I dropped onto my knees in front of his rigid crumpled body. I look up towards one of the window panes of the door that’s now smashed into pieces onto the floor in the entry way. Two gigantic pieces that resemble the likes of a guillotine still remain with drops of fresh blood dripping down. I look back to Charlie and see a few small cuts on his wrist and think…ok it’s not pulsating…we’re ok…he’s ok….and I grab both his arms around his biceps.
I can’t even begin to describe that moment. My left hand wrapped around his skinny upper arm and felt warm, soft, open skin. It was the most sickening feeling. My sons arm had been lashed open by glass; like a lion had actually attacked my child…its tooth shard still standing in place like it was taunting me.
I lost my cool mamma way. I literally screamed louder than Charlie and Isla at this point. Al…valiant as a hero said I’ll call 911. So quick was I to say no and that was just enough to snap me out of my frozen state of mind..we’re leaving NOW…I need a towel… mamma had kicked into emergency medical professional mode and tied a tourniquet into his armpit with his t-shirt, wrapped the rest of his arm in a towel, scooped him up and drove him straight to MetroWest Medical Center which isn’t far…however universe…you challenged me for sure with road closures the entire way. What should have been an easy 5 min drive took 10 gut wrenching minutes.
Charlie asking if he’s going to die, will his arm fall off? And that the first thing he could think of was he thought we were going to be so mad at him for breaking the window. ❤️
I just felt so helpless, lost, unsure…I carried him up to the ED and was greeted by a woman walking out who so generously offered to help carry my bag while I just crumbled saying “this strong mamma is losing it”… while sobbing.
Triage was immediate and I’m so grateful for all that happened from here. They gently took his bandages off and were able to get numbing medicine into all the lacerations so we could see what we were dealing with. No arterial bleeding…whew and didn’t seem like any nerve or tendon damage. Thank you GOD! ❤️

Charlie and I have been meditating together and I give him reiki at night so I went right to his head to start reiki as we did breath work counting in and out slowly while they worked. He was brilliant, zen, quiet. Letting the practitioners do what they needed to stop bleeding and asses the wounds.
The decision was made that the upper arm laceration was too big for ED closure so off the Boston Children’s we went.
Al and Isla had met us after X-rays and Charlie was elated to see them. Al being so incredible packed mamma and Charlie a bag so we could re-set for what was to come. Charlie’s favorite blue elephant and mammas comfy sweats!
It was a blur the rest of the evening. Children’s felt surreal. Charlie is such a little man, he answers all the questions, loves to have a chat with everyone and asks all his brilliant questions. Step by step we walked…finding the best path to getting his arm fixed up.
I feel like there isn’t enough words or appreciation that I could give to my phenomenal colleagues. They listened, we collaborated and all decided as a team the best place to repair this was to have surgery. So up to the operating room we went to visit where mamma works.
He was calm, hesitant but present. He was curious and wise and held it all in. He was my angel and so were all the nurses, surgeons, anesthesiologists, and nursing assistants. The immense gratitude for touch. A hand on my back as he went to sleep, I was sobbing…I was on the other side. I was the parent trusting the life of my child in the hands of others. I do this everyday, and last night I could get the enormous appreciation for my job. For all of us and there is nothing but pure love and appreciation for each of you last night. Those who gave me a hug and your time your listening ears, who interacted with Charlie, played with him, asked him lots of interesting questions. You made all the difference in the world. Forever forever so thankful!

post op, thumbs up!

 We arrived home around 3am. He snuggled in next to me and Al in our big marshmallow bed but I couldn’t sleep. I just had to stare at him.
Being a parent is the hardest job I could ever be doing…and the most heart cracking opening accepting one as well…having lived a few experiences like this as a parent…I’m sooo honored that I get to be that person that you as a parent entrust with the life of your child. I feel lucky I was guided into being a CRNA. I truly know what a special job it is and each day at work I am so grateful I get to do what I do.
Charlie will be ok. Time to heal for all of us. Time to rest to reset. Time to expand who I am in this world. As a mother, a CRNA and a holistic nurse. 🙏🏽❤️

so excited for a wheelchair and canada dry

the evil lion/guillotine

breaking into you

I knew something had changed in me when I started sobbing uncontrollably
yesterday. I had “lost” Isla in the house. Yes total truth. The power
went out from the storm so we were finding things to do to keep us
occupied. Charlie and I had to run to the car to get a book and when we
got back she had disappeared. Now, our house is locked, and you can only
go out the back door. She really could not have disappeared. But for 15
long minutes I could not find Isla. It started out with me feeling just a
little annoyed, I kept asking Charlie to go and find her…and slowly
the annoyance turned into sheer and utter panic….as I was standing
still…I heard absolutely nothing but my crazy thoughts.

How could she be gone?! My heart was racing, my mind was swirling with
every possible story..there may or may not have been a thought that
aliens had come and abducted Isla .
My point being I was awake and aware of my thoughts and feelings as
just that….. eventually. And in the instant that I finally had
clarity; I said the right word combination “Isla, daddy wants to talk to
you” that she finally emerged with a sly smile. I couldn’t stop crying.
I was present to the intense amount of love I have for this child. I
hugged her and cried. She says “mamma are you really crying?!” Ohhh yes
baby girl I was so scared I’d lost you. This is the moment I got ME. My
soul was saying the exact same thing to me. She thought she had lost me.

This last new moon to full moon period has held some life altering
teaching moments. Yesterday being the full moon can come with intense
emotional surges, ideas and energy. There’s a part of me that’s been
hidden and until recently it’s been running the Aly show. We all have
heard there are experiences we have from our past that create our
automatic ways of being…and I’ve done a fair bit of self inquiry to
know a few of mine, however there will always be work to do. There will
be many masks to discover/uncover and parts of us we wish we couldn’t
see. I have a mission in this lifetime to help bring the light back into
people’s hearts and in order to I must uncover my darknesses, my places
where the sun can’t get to. You see all these parts of us are equal.
The good parts; the parts that get praise and admiration and elevated
are equal to the dark parts; jealousy, hate, anger and rage. They’re
equal human reactions/responses. Uncovering both is an integral part to
finding who you truly are. The unstoried self…. your unconditional

This mask is called the “I’m better than you” mask. Ouch right? It’s the
“I’m right and you’re wrong mask”. I’m humbled quite honestly for
everything I’ve been experiencing. There’s no blame, no- it’s over there
not over here this time. In the past I’ve blamed others for my pain and
upset. I’ve been living in a realm of; I don’t need to do the work but
you do. It’s not pretty I understand that. But reflecting on what I’ve
been experiencing this past week I can see the incredible gift of seeing
this part of me, and loving this part of me. It’s mine, it’s all me and
I’m owning this one.

When we begin to understand who’s been running the show, we can begin to
dis-empower this part so I’m left with nothing but being related to
every human being. To loving every single person exactly how they are. I
can now love every human being exactly where they are at on their own
journey. Because it is their own journey to have. Their own story to
write. There’s no need to fix, change, or help. There’s just space for

When I’m truly healing myself and another, it’s not coming from ego me.
It’s within, its divine. “I” have nothing to do with this besides being a
conduit for love and light. This is the lesson I am present to. When
ego is in power, it’s coming from a love of praise, of like me/love
me/see me, of hear me, of I’m amazing…. but in that space there’s no
place for soul to grow. So now I can check in and see what is my goal or
intent in sharing? If it’s not for the greater good of all it’s not
coming from my unstoried self.

Powerful. Peaceful. Courageous.

This week I’ve been up and down. Loving and hating myself. True human
emotions. I haven’t been stopping them, hiding them or wishing they’d
disappear. I’ve been honoring and acknowledging everything. And I’m
noticing all the gifts coming into my life. The present moments where I
can breathe.

I’ve grounded…bare feet on the ground, while sobbing and listening to
Christina Perri’s Head or Heart song screaming out the lyrics;  “I’M

I’ve meditated and hugged myself. I’m new, I’m humbled and grounded. So
grounded. Synchronicity has had its way with me as I now know this was
all part of the greater plan.

I will always be learning, a forever student of life. I am not perfect.
I’m here opening all wounds and sharing my soul with each and every one
of you. My reasons, so that you too can live a life filled with miracles
that YOU get to create. It takes something to understand there’s so
much more to this life. I heard recently from a spiritual teacher what
she says to herself everyday when she wakes…”I’m alive again today”
I’ve been trying it on and it’s transformed my mornings. When I think
that today could be my last…my ego fizzles quickly away and I’m so
present to what’s so in the moment…complete and beautiful gratitude
and love for everything just as it is.

Brittany Burke thank you so much for teaching class! Yesterday I
got to be in the presence of a new true beautiful soul guiding our yoga
practice! Brittany your messages resonated so much.As your story of the 104 year old woman stuck with me
all day…when asked how she lived such a life of longevity…her
answer?? When it’s raining-I be with the rain. ️

being present when you want to hide

The lessons learned through this summer carried me far last
night as I sat in the emergency room at Boston Children’s Hospital with
Charlie. His porcelain face had red rosy cheeks from crying, bags under his
eyes from falling asleep in the car on the drive over and I could see his loose
front tooth while he stood there staring at the wheelchair with his mouth wide
open. “Did Isla get to ride in a wheelchair?” he asked with a slight sense of
pride and excitement. I can’t help but think…this is what he wanted ever since
Isla had her tonsils out…he wanted to go to the hospital, to have the attention
she did, to take medicine, to sleep in a bed that wasn’t his…but not this way
bud, I really didn’t want to have to experience the hospital with another child
this soon.

Those lessons I learned all summer from reading those 16
books, many books that have changed my world, have given me so much volume of
knowledge on life came through in these moments. From the moment it happened,
the moment I heard his horrific screech from behind me on the deck while we
were standing there in one of the most painful and heartbreaking moments of our
vacation. Nonno and Nonna were literally pulling out of the driveway while we
told Charlie to hurry up and come wave goodbye. Charlie was climbing out of the
trampoline and fell off the ladder with an enormous thud. He’s climbed in and
out of the trampoline more times than he could count, and he just started
gymnastics, his sense of his body and coordination is on point. It was an accident.
A true accident.

Byron Katie says suffering is when you argue with reality. Boy
has her words stayed close in my heart. What’s there to be upset about? Be
present…be present in this moment with your child, your family, be present. And
I was. All the books I’ve read and most recently reading touch so much on being
present in the moment. Well…jeez, how many times have you heard those words and
never have you put any meaning on it?? I had a big breakthrough in thinking, in
living, in learning. What if instead of beating the crap out of those awful
thoughts, the ones that they say aren’t you..the ego, the ugly, the darkness,
the shadows, what if instead of shutting them down, pretending those feelings
belong tucked away, somewhere deep, dark and never to be seen or heard of
again, what if you looked at those thoughts with all the love you have in your
body. What if you were listening to the thoughts and just gave them the most
intense hug and cherished them completely. Isn’t that unconditional love? I was
scared completely seeing him in so much agony. I wanted to cry, to hide, to run
away from it all but I paused…and I fell in love with who I was in that moment
and became incredibly present to what was so, what was actually happening. My
child just broke his arm and I am his mother, unconditionally his mother.

So in this intensely painful moment as a mother to see and
feel the anguish and terror of your child who has just broken his arm, I loved
the moment. I surrendered and was present. There is no better gift than
complete presence for others to feel, to be and to experience. I could be there
for Charlie with my whole heart and give him the space to feel the moment. He
cried and cried. I didn’t try to distract him or judge him, I let him feel it
all and we created the next moments together.

Al came home after a heartbreaking goodbye to Jeanette and
Graeme at the Logan Express to switch off from sadness to worry. I took Charlie
and he was with Isla. Still living the present means not predicting the future,
we were living one moment at a time and that is exactly what I was instilling
in Charlie. We don’t know what happened inside his body but we will take all
the measures to find out and when we get those facts we make the next decision.

He really was so strong and open to the experience as it
happened. I am incredibly thankful for all the lessons I have been learning and
will continue to learn. I could be the present mom for him throughout and I
will continue to. We don’t know what will happen. He has a cast for a week and
will get more x-rays to make sure it’s healing correctly. Soccer has been
cancelled as well as gymnastics. All planning has changed and again here’s the
beauty of presence and surrender. It’s all ok. My heart swells so much
reflecting on this day, these past 24 hours. All I wanted was to share and
inspire others to live truly present. As you can see this picture was taken
literally 20 minutes before Charlie broke his arm and no one could have
predicted the future. We never can. September 11 is an incredible day to
celebrate and be with present moments. We were all and will be forever affected
by the events of this day many years ago….but the lessons still remain. Live
you life for today….for now. Tomorrow is not promised. What are you waiting
for? Make the change, take action, be outrageous and say goodbye to fear. We
all have the gift of presence in us always.

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