IMG_0852While Mama still has energy, we practice daily qigong

I’ve continued to be deeply moved by the responses and stories that you have shared with me as comments on this video blog and to my Social Media posts. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for offering your own stories, thoughts, prayers, and loving energy to both my mom and me during this time. It means more than I can say — to both of us.

Yesterday I asked mama, who has seen my videos, posts, and your responses, how she felt about my creating this blog to share these moments during her end stages of her life — to check in to see whether it felt ok or if she would prefer to keep this journey private. Her response was so typical of her strength, courage, and “no bullshit” attitude towards life that I wanted to share her words with you.

She told me she feels both flattered and amazed because, as she put it, she had no idea that “so many people would give a shit.” She added “Dying is not something I’m ashamed of. It’s not like a venereal disease or telling people about some horrible thing I’ve done like robbed a bank or murdered someone. Everyone has to face this sometime and maybe it helps them. I think privacy equals loneliness, like somehow I should be shut away. I would resent that. And what people say makes me so much less lonely, that they care.”

That said, she seems to be actually getting a little stronger, even though she does have a terminal illness. In fact, she just called me to say she had just had a wonderful shower, the first one in a long time with the help of a kind aide.

But enough of my take on it all, here she is…

Renegade-Woo” Vicki Dello Joio, founder of The Way of Joy: A Spiritual Fitness Program, brings together East Coast Attitude and West Coast energy consciousness as a master teacher, transformative speaker and performing artist. Integrating over 40 years of Chi Kung practice with other martial arts as well as her work in Yoga, Feldenkreis, physical fitness and theater, Vicki has developed a dynamic set of tools to transform obstacles into opportunities and enhance creative potential. Book: The Way of Joy, CD: Short Meditations for a Busy Life