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Never Say: “I Need a Break”
August 30th, 2011

Sometimes I wonder these things: a) Why would anybody want to write a blog about what is going on in their lives lately? and more importantly, b) Why would anybody want to (or have time to) actually read it?

Our Ananda webmasters have convinced me that people do want to read what we have to say, so I’ll take their word for it. It is my main hope that whatever I have to say might be of use to you spiritually in some way.

So here’s my news: On June 22, 2011 my husband of 31 years broke his leg (tibia, or shin-bone, in 3 places). It was/is a very bad break, and I have spent from then till now–a little over 2 months–learning how to be a good “CARE-GIVER.” And this learning opportunity is due to continue for several months to come.

Sudarshan was riding his little motor scooter (he’s been riding the same scooter safely and responsibly for 15 years or so) from our home to The Expanding Light to meet me and an old friend from out of town for lunch. He somehow “missed” seeing one of our speed bumps, lost control of the scooter, and BOOM–our lives were changed in an instant. Karma strikes in a big way this time!

Here are a few of the major blessings surrounding the event: 1) There were 6-8 witnesses, several of which were either nurses or trained EMT folk. All of them immediately went into action, calling 911, keeping him shaded (it was a hot day), helping him breathe through the shock, locating me to come to the scene, and so on. 2) We were told often that it could have been so much worse: whiplash, broken, back neck, death, etc. He separated from his scooter immediately, so that was a blessing. He was wearing his helmet which has a big dent in it now, so that was a blessing too! and 3) We were told he’d need surgery, but at the last minute, we were told a large cast for 6 weeks would do the job just as well. Amazing!

After six or so hours in the local hospital emergency room, we came home. There were eight strong Ananda people at our house to help us get him inside and in bed. Immediately the whole Ananda Community had kicked into gear, offering us help on every level. Everyone was praying and bringing us food and all sorts of other kinds of help. How do people get through something like this without the caliber of devotee friends and neighbors that we have? This, I don’t know and can’t even imagine! I just know that we are very grateful.

What have I learned spiritually and otherwise?

  1. Never say: “I need a break.” God may take you literally!
  2. People keep saying to me: “I’m really praying for Sudarshan, but I’m praying for you also, as his primary care-giver.” I knew he really needed the healing prayer energy, but had no idea about how right they were about how much I needed healing energy, too! THANKS FOR ALL PRAYERS, DEAR FRIENDS!
  3. You can be married to somebody for 31 years and think you know them very well. Then something like this happens and you get to see that there are NEW THINGS about your spouse and about your marriage that you didn’t know! Amazing!
  4. What things? He could probably write volumes on the subject, too. For me, I’ll keep it as short as possible. He’s a big, strong, intelligent, independent, self-sufficient to the max man. Now he’s dependent on others (and primarily on me) for everything in the material world. He’s a meditating yogi and tries very hard to remain even-minded and cheerful all the time. But when pain and injury strike hard like this, yogic attitudes can be put to a great test.
  5. Did he pass all the tests of remaining even-minded and cheerful at all times? I think he would probably say “not completely.” Did I? No, I didn’t. I had a couple of major emotional melt-downs. I surprised myself very much with my less than good behavior.
  6. This too shall pass. He’s better now, but not well; he’s still on crutches and in pain–though much less so. He is going to Physical Therapy Sessions in town two times a week, and also doing strengthening exercises at home. It is helping, but it also stirs up the pain, over and over. Necessary torture.
  7. You have to keep meditating, even when you think you REALLY don’t have time. I’m holding down 2 part time jobs (which means both are full time). He can’t work for many months to come (thus, no salary for him), so I’m the main income-provider. Caring for him has been close to a full-time job, too. But the meditation CANNOT stop! No question about that. Otherwise, coping would be twice as hard.
  8. Watching him struggle to meditate daily when he can’t even sit up straight–this has been very inspiring to me.
  9. In our marriage, we have had jobs which keep us moving  in separate orbits for most of the hours of each day. Now we are like peas in the same pod for a large part of each day. Our roles are different, too. Small or large irritations happen constantly for both of us. Are we doing OK? With God and Guru’s help and a TON of help from our friends, I’m happy to say that we are. So far, so good!

So that’s my most recent story and I’m sticking to it. How has your summer been? (smile)

 

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26 Responses

  1. Joy Andreakis says:

    Thank you, Savitri, for writing this. I found your words inspiring, as I too am a caregiver. And the most important words of all, “But the meditation CANNOT stop!” (the webmasters were right)

    Joy

  2. Dambara says:

    Thanks, Savitri. Love your letters (and your closing class at SRW too). Many blessings to you both!

  3. Astara says:

    It is good to hear from our gurubais the struggles we encounter, the bumps along the way, the help we receive from our community and how we do our best to keep on track with our practices. Thank God and Gurus for our practices! How others manage without them, I do not know.

    I had heard of the accident and will again send more healing love to you both as you continue on this part of your journey. I know that your story will inspire others. The strength of your relationship on this path together has been provided with yet another opportunity to dive deeper within and to learn more about receiving as well as giving. I feel you are very blessed, and I am grateful for the community in which you live.

    Many Blessings,
    Astara

  4. Kristy Fassler-Hecht says:

    Thanks so much for sharing the teachings in action with adversity! You are both in my prayers and I wish Sudarshan speedy healing!

  5. nirupma says:

    ‘never say i need a break!!” that was inspirational, and yes atleast i read all the blogs!! i survive on them, my sanity thrives on them.after my parents ananda is the auspicious chapter of my life!!

  6. Betsey (Elisabeth) Minthorn says:

    Best Greetings Savitri and Sudarshan:

    What a summer, what a life! Master bless you both. Years ago, during recovery from a broken wrist, a friend truly helped the arm to heal. We placed large comfrey leaves over the whole arm and wrapped the leaves with cotton fabric. I think that and accompanying Reiki helped immensely.
    I hope tht Sudarshasn is doing much better.
    Joyful blessings, Betsey

  7. Karl says:

    Savitri. There are many of us out here, not surrounded by a community of devotees at all times and it is difficult. But, hearing the reality of your life and the challenges that you are facing so graciously with God and Guru’s help, even within the many blessings of a spiritual community is exactly what I need to hear. I sometimes want to believe that the solution to my problems is moving to an Ananda community, but the solution is not outward. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Om, om, om!
    karl

  8. Amintha Petersen says:

    Thank you Savitri for writing your story. I love how you make tragery into a blessing. Like the saying: If we have lemons let’s make lemonade.

    Regards and blessings to both of you

    Amintha

  9. Sheila Nichols says:

    Dear Savitri,
    I am sooo impressed with your candor and your sticking
    to your center through crashing worlds. I pray that you
    both heal instantly.
    Love and blessings and joy to you both. Sheila

  10. Debra says:

    Thank you so much, Savitri, for sharing so honestly about this most recent challenge foryou and Sudarshan. Yes, the webmasters were right. I and others, I’m sure, cannot help but be inspired to move with courage through life and relationship challenges, remembering that our greatest resource is our connection with Spirit. Continued blessings to you both. Thank you.

  11. Tracy Anderson says:

    Hi Savitri! It is always a joy to read your blog posts. You have the ability to make us laugh in the midst of crashing worlds! I continue to pray for both of you. It is so helpful to have a down to earth perspective of these human things so we know it’s possible to rise above them (or at least aim in that direction!). Thanks for sharing with us, and keep sharing. Those webmasters know what they are talking about!

  12. Mary Meckley says:

    Thank you for sharing your personal account of your experience. It is helpful and sincere. I am passing it on to a friend whose husband suffered a head injury with brain damage. She is in need of a boost.

    Blessings to you and Sudarshan and prayers for a continued speedy recovery.
    Mary Meckley

  13. Maracay Silva says:

    Thank you Savitri. And what a blessing to have a supportive, understanding community. Very often in my nursing experience I have noticed primary caregivers taken for granted. This seems to be especially evident when the local sibling is caring for the parent and the distant siblings have no understanding of the nature of the challenge. May all care givers be blessed and appreciated by the “patient” and all those close to the situation. Blessings to you Savitri and to Sudarshan too.
    In Master’s love and friendship, Margaret .

  14. Janice says:

    Savitri, thank you so much for your”blog”.

    Your first paragraph pretty much summed up how I feel about blogs in general. However, it is very different when it comes from Ananda.

    The webmasters did have it right!

    You were meant to be heard. Your story touched a chord in my heart , and I appreciate your honesty & sense of humor along the way..

    Blessings to you

    Janice

  15. Marianne Plaisier says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience Savitri. I am inspired to continue to meditate NO MATTER what!!! I haven’t had to be the care taker of someone else but I can easily find reasons not to meditate. After reading your blog you have inspired me to meditate regardless of my reasons/excuses for not meditating. Thank you again.

  16. Becca Pronchick says:

    Thank you Savitri for your honest and insightful story about never saying “I need a break”! I’ve learned quite a bit about long horizontal recovery (and physical therapy, etc.) and meditation lying down. Great to hear how you have both grown (groan!) from this experience together.

    I second Betsy’s comment about comfry leaves. Comfry compresses help tremendously for healing. May you both return to your frisky selves very soon.

    Much love, Becca

  17. Surana says:

    Savitri – thank you for taking the time to write your story. I know of your service-load both at home and in the office. And yet, here you are, writing something that is an inspiration to us all. What I see in you more and more is that in your service (as in your meditation) you expand to meet whatever is in front of you. Your energy feels balanced even though your personal reality might feel shaky. You smile even though inside it’s more of a tearful call for help. You have unrelenting determination to move appropriately and cheerfully in anything that attaches to you – in any task asked of you. God speaks through you to all of us. I thank Him for this! With Love,

  18. shankari says:

    Thank you Nayaswami Savitri! Such sweet humanity in this!
    Master bless you and Nayaswami Sudarshan.

  19. Mark Smithhisler says:

    Thanks for sharing your story Savitri.

    I’ve always loved your sense of humor and your comment about “never say I need a break” was priceless.

    Having experienced the role of a caregiver several years ago when our first child was very ill I can relate to the challenges and the emotional melt-downs. I wasn’t as strong on the path at that time so I have to admit that I wasn’t meditating much during that time but the support that we received from our Ananda spiritual family was so inspiring. In hindsight I can say that the love I felt from community members both in Dallas and California strongly influenced me to become a kriyaban and strengthen my practice. So a word to the non-caregivers – keep sending out those healing prayers. You never know what the results will be.

    Masters Blessings to both of you.

    Mark

  20. Sandra Allison says:

    Hi savitri :)

    Thank you for sharing your’s and Sudarshans very human experience…you both inspire me and I am grateful for your candidness. I too have been back in the care-giver sadle with my parents. Meditation has been my saving grace as well. Holding you and Surdashan in Love & Light.
    Sandra

  21. Sudarshan Simpson says:

    I’m blessed to say I’m much better and looking forward soon to be able to walk without crutches. Yes, it’s been amazing to watch first hand how a “doer” personality copes with limited ability to do. Also it’s been fascinating to see how strongly the body’s needs affect consciousness. Watching the process gives clues about how consciousness works. Very illuminating! Many thanks to Savitri for her courageous efforts on my behalf and on all of yours. Interesting sidelight: I had just returned from 10 days of caregiving for my 90 year old Dad when the accident happened. Perhaps Divine Mother wanted me to have a balanced perspective?

    • Savitri says:

      I very much appreciate all the sweet and supportive comments, love and prayers from everyone, but I especially appreciated your comment! Thanks from your wife, Savitri

  22. paula jones says:

    Thanks for affirming the necessity and benefit from regularly meditating, no matter how busy we are.

  23. Karen G says:

    Wow – what a delightful, honest, unflinching look at life. Stuff happens, and seeing how people deal with it is always instructive. I so appreciate you sharing. And you thought no one would read this stuff. I happened to see a link to it from a letter Asha wrote recently, so I bet quite a few people are heading over to read your story. Love to you and Sudarshan.

  24. Brinda Bhoobun says:

    Two years ago, I also told God that I am tired and I needed a break. Some days later, I felt from the stairs and was badly injured. I remained in bed for 3 months and it took me some times before I could walk normally. I totally agree with you when you say ” Never say: I need a break. God may take you literally!”. Instead ask him to help you face any difficulty. He loves us and is there for us always.

    God bless you Sister Savitri and thank you for posting.

    Brinda

  25. Kay says:

    Oh Wow, what an uplifting post and comments! Indeed, we must pray incessantly as Masters say and keep going. I have concluded from my readings of Ananda that while we are here we should be happy, look to God, apply our best efforts and remain detached of outcomes. I realize there could be no nutshell to life, but for us younger folk who live with sound bites, could this be an accurate one?

    This post made my day! I know you are both well now, thank God, so may God keep you well and vibrant for more future blog posts! Here’s to appreciating life!