Finding Humor During A Loss

Humor, sometimes can be therapeutic in sad situations or during a loss. Humor is good for the heart, relaxation, and decreases stress; it can also be used to find solace.

During the recent Hurricane Harvey, I spoke to a friend whose house was flooded, and she was not even aware of the evacuation warning, and was hit by the flood inside her house while she was upstairs. She miraculously escaped the flood, but lost everything in the house. She was all by herself as her family was out-of-town.

I finally got hold of her on her way travelling out of the country for a family member’s funeral at the Atlanta international airport. She took a taxi to Atlanta, for all she wanted was just to get out of the depressive environment and deal with her loss later. As we were catching up on the disastrous hurricane Harvey experience, I reminded her once again that I was happy she came out of it safe, and that she can always replace what ever she lost.

She told me how she could now walk over to her neighbor and ask for a drink of water, because all the walls that separated them were all destroyed by the hurricane. I told her that would promote harmony among the people in her neighbor since there are no separations between them by the walls.

I told her a story of a gentleman in Nigeria, who during a recent cyclone that blew away their apartment’s roof chased the roof in the deadly wind that was racing at 125 mph with all his neighbors. What a dangerous thing to do! It can only happen in a developing country, where people can risk their lives during a natural disaster to save properties. It is like chasing your property in the hit of a hurricane, when you are supposed to be evacuating. We both laughed for minutes at the silliness of the roof chasers during a deadly wind.

We both felt good at the moment of our talking and laughing knowing that life, safety, and family are important in our lives. I was glad that her stress and depression over her hurricane loss was overtaken by humor just before she boarded the plane.

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Health Promotion and Hygiene at St John School-So Real!

In 2015, barely one year after I lost my husband, an idea to start a foundation to honor him floated all over my brain. Self-resistance almost took over the idea of helping a very poor school community in an impoverished village with no water OR sanitation. The resistance was mainly because my loss was just too fresh to embark on any new project. After much deliberation, I could not let fear of the unknown to stop me from serving.

I went on the computer and did all the necessary paper work needed by the State of California to start a non-profit organization, and the Hippolyte Foundation was born. By the summer of 2015, we were awarded a 501©(3) charitable foundation status. I happened to be in Nigeria that summer. We visited a primary school as we were driving pass it. The school building was pathetic and very unsafe for the students’ ages (6-12). I was with my daughter, and she could not believe that people could actually stay in such an unsafe environment.

As we toured the classrooms, the floorings were broken and some areas are about 2 feet deep, and turned into water poodle. To say but the least, “the students use the bushes as toilet and there is no running water in the school community”. How can this be possible in the 21st century? It is a reality! The four-toilet facility at St John School has just been completed and we are starting a new water initiative for the school is on the way by God’s grace. (See Pictures of Project below).

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Completed Four Toilet Facilities at St John School

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Significance of the Month of June

 

June is not only the sixth month of the year, which signals the end of the first half of the year, it also ushers in summer. June brings in joy, happiness, and elevates mood, as the daylight is endlessly longer than the darkness of the night. June brings along with it a lot of academic goals and aspirations. This year, 2017, I have attended six graduations as June marks the end of middle school or high school for teens. June produces thousands of college graduates all over the world.

June is the month of love, as many new couples take their vows to start a new and happy married life with their spouses. June as we know is named after the Roman Goddess of marriage, Juno. She is known to be the protector of women and relationships.

Most businesses evaluate the next half of the year starting in June. Projections of the second half can be ascertained based on the outlook of sales from the first half. Some religious organizations do their spiritual cleansing in the second half of the year and at the beginning of the year. Individuals tend to re-evaluate their new year’s resolutions in June. Some service organizations change their leaderships in June, and churches. June is such a beautiful and stress free month.

Enjoy the remaining days in June and I hope it brings you joy, love and happiness.

 

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Hope: Many Interpretations Always Used

 

“Hope is the feeling of wanting something to happen and thinking that it could happen: a feeling that something good will happen or be true: the chance something good will happen: someone or something that may be able to provide help: someone or something that may be able to provide help: someone or something that may be able to You’re our last hope (Merriam-Webster dictionary)”.

A Christian’s definition of hope is far superior to that of the world. Instead of wishing or hoping for something to happen, a believer knows that their hope is solid, concrete evidence because it is grounded in the Word of God and we know that God cannot lie (Patheos, 2014).

Hope is synonymous of faith, looking for a better future, and positive mind thought that all would be well. People hope to find a new and a better job when laid off, hope often succeeds negative experience as one looks for a more positive consequences in the outcome of their choices, post a negative or regrettable event.

Some optimists believe that the word hope, is used for people who are not sure of the outcome of their under takings. They would rather use the word like; it is already done to affirm the positive state of mind of an anticipated outcome.

Hope comes after darkness, it is the step towards a more fulfilling future, and with hope people can make the impossible possible. Faith and hope go together, when you have faith in someone, you will always be hopeful that the individual will stand by you, offer help when needed, or just be there for you.

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Gratitude is the Key to A Successful Living

Gratitude is just being mere “thankful” when someone does a good deed or favor for you. It can also be an appreciation of a relationship, friendship, business favors, or just expressing your heartfelt gratefulness to a stranger, a family member or a professional colleague. Do you recall the first hug from your toddler saying thank you for feeding him/her or for buying that special toy for him/her?

One of the first teachings by a parent to a child once they start conceptualizing things is to say thank you. You can agree with me that a child who grew up in an environment where gratitude is a norm, would grow up to be a grateful adult when situations warrants it. Most children’s’ songs and bible verses are filled with gratitude. There is a always a smile on the face whenever gratitude is expressed. One would arguably say that gratitude is therapeutic for those who practice it.

The Priest, Rabbi or Imam emphasizes that their congregation acknowledges how grateful they are for the privileges, we as human beings have over other creations by God. Because of that superiority, the world has evolved so dramatically for good. Science can be interpreted as human’s expression of their prefrontal cortex, which differentiates us from other animals. Human beings should be grateful for that gift.

A yoga instructor often starts and ends a class with an expression of gratitude, setting the participants minds for positivity and openness to the world. If you practice meditation, there is always a moment of calmness of appreciation, and being grateful for whom you are, your family, work, and good health. Gratitude with a smile can reduce tensions on your facial muscles, and directs positive energy flow to the heart.

I am grateful to all that would be reading this blog, my business associates who believe in my expertise and keep the referrals flowing, my friends, employees, and all that I have had the opportunity to interact on a positive level. I am most grateful to my family for being in my life, for God perfected that creation when he made you my gene.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Celebrating Passover

 

I recently celebrated a Passover Feast with a women-sharing group at my church. It is interesting to know that we were all Catholics, but decided to participate in this highly spiritual and meaningful celebration “Passover”. We were all enthused at the dinning table. The Paschal Meal prayer, with the beautiful festival lights, and the plates that actually has the pictures of what part of the meal goes where was fascinating. The plate was filled with salt water, horseradish, green herb, and haroseth, morror, and matzoh; with a bowl of wine set at the father’s place (recall we were all women).

We systematically did all the mother, father special prayers as we followed the rituals; which includes distributing the cup of thanksgiving, holding the wine, washing of hands by the father, wiping his hands with a napkin, while praying. If you are a catholic, this ritual may sound familiar to you. We also did the Hagadah ritual. A Catholic Priest was invited to the ceremony, who hid the matzoh, and the youngest child could not find where it was hidden. We had the two next youngest children to assist with the search, and they were still looking all over the house, until I left.

My participation in the Passover Ceremony with these wonderful and highly spirit-filled women, gave me an insight on the biblical readings and the actual practice of the events leading to the Passover. There is a lot of history attached the Passover, such as from slavery to freedom; sorrow to joy, mourning to festive, from darkness to light, and from subjection to redemption for our Jewish brothers and sisters.

Happy Passover to you!

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Why Medi-Cal Should Never be Messed With

Medi-Cal is a public heath insurance program which provides needed health care services for the low-income individuals including families with children, seniors, persons with disabilities, foster care, pregnant women, and low income people in California (CA.gov/dhcs 2015).

The total number of people who signed up for medical from 2013 to 2016 was 11,990,045, and the estimated number of eligible people for coverage is 2,875,000.00. (CMS, 2016). The uninsured rate in the state of California has decreased to 45% with medi-cal usage.

As a health care professional who provide services to low income families, both children and seniors, depriving them from this entitlement is not only callous, but a danger to the society.

Individuals with aids and mental health rely on medi-cal for the sustenance of their medications, and rehabilitation. It is not even comprehensible to envision what the effect of lack of medical services for children and the increase in mortality rate for infant/children’s communicable diseases.

The United States has witnessed random shootings by individuals with some type of mental health or the other. Some reports indicated that since 1970, 60% of mass killings perpetrators suffered from some sort of mental health (Am J Public Heath, 2015). Can you imagine when these perpetrators could never have access to their medications?

Medi-Cal is an important entitlement for the citizens of the United States and should not be messed with by this administration or future ones.

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