This has been hard for me to sit down and write.

I always want to share with you positive inspirations for supporting you more deeply and living your life with more joy and freedom. I find it so difficult to share and express to you about things that are declining or that there is no way of fixing them or making it better.

What I am speaking of in my life is that my mom has Alzheimer’s disease. For the past 6 years this devastating disease has been progressively taking away my mom’s ability to comprehend, recognize people, and independently care for herself.

I find it so sad to be witnessing the slow decline of my mom’s health and to be continually losing more of my mom and the woman that she was. Sometimes the sadness that I feel is so deep that I find it hard to breath.

Last year I decided that as a form of self-care I would start running to be able to physically express the grief that I was experiencing.

Shortly after I began running with this intention I joined the Athletes to End Alzheimer’s team to run the NYC 1/2 Marathon on March 17th 2013. Thank you so much to all of you who helped me run to remember.

This March 16th, 2014 I have joined the team once again to run the NYC 1/2 Marathon.

I run for my mom. I run for all of us who love my mom dearly. I run for the 5.4 million Americans living with the disease and the sorrow of their loved ones. I run to bring awareness to this disease, to share what happens, to share what can be done, and to help raise funds for research, care, and support.

Click here if you would like to support this cause!

As I train for my 1/2 Marathon and also help care for my mom I am reminded of a few incredible lessons. I want to share them with you in hopes that they are helpful. Read on below for these simply powerful lessons.

My Invitation to you this week:

Please help me raise funds for this worthy cause. Please make a donation to help the Alzheimer’s Association, New York City Chapter advance research into prevention, treatments, and a cure for Alzheimer’s.

Make a donation here.

I have personally benefited so much from the outreach programs, support groups, and education that the Alzheimer’s Association offers for the community nationwide. I really appreciate your support. Your contribution will help find a way to change the course of this disease and raise the spirit of so many impacted.

Wishing you radiant health,

xo Frances

Simply Powerful Lessons from my Mama & Running on the Road

I haven’t shared much about this with you before – but I want to in hopes that what I have found helpful may help you in your relationship to yourself, your loved ones, in your work and your life.

Lessons from my Mama:

  • Be Here Now

When I am caring for my mom and spending time with her I am continually reminded of how powerful it is to be present. It is really important to be mindful of my communication and energy with my mom as she has begun to lose all sense of reasoning, recognition of people, and has become more sensitive to light, sound, and the environment around her. This has taught me the importance of being present with your loved ones – to see where they are, what is influencing how they feel, and to meet them where they are.

  • Eye contact and Touch

These days my mom doesn’t always respond to verbal cues and directions. And she often is speaking & mumbling incoherent and incomplete sentences. Without being able to receive acknowledgment that she understands I have found it so useful to use eye contact and loving touch to connect with her, redirect her attention and to just be with her. Even though less of her full self is present – I can still see the beauty and light in her eyes. I am sure she can feel so much through touch and eye contact and it reminds me of how powerful this is in our every relationship and connection.

Lessons from Running on the Road:

  • One Foot in Front of the Other

As I increase my mileage in my training runs I can feel that I am getting closer and closer to my goal of running 13.1 miles. Sometimes the end goal can seem daunting, impossible, painful, or even scary. But I have found that when I just keep my focus on taking one more step forward it keeps me in action and I have faith will get me where I need to go. Often times when I am running I will literally think about one foot hitting the ground and pushing off and then the other to keep my focus.

  • Free ~ Love

When things get challenging for me in my runs, when I am short of breath, tired, or distracted I bring my attention to my breath and practice saying a word in my mind on the inhale, and another word on the exhale. Lately I have been saying Free when I inhale & Love on my exhale. The words could be different, but what has been most powerful & healing for me has been to see my drive, determination and intention is all in the act of love.

I hope that these are some helpful reflections for you in your life.