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Ukrainian Bake Sale Success

March 14, 2022
Today, I drove to the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Kelowna to donate cash to some Ukrainian women I had recently connected with. These ladies had organized a bake sale to pay for medical supplies they're going to send to Ukraine. I thought it would be a quick stop and that I could also buy some authentic perogies and borscht after. To my great surprise, the lineup snaked through the parking lot, spilling over onto the adjacent road and continuing down the cross street. I thought to myself, well isn't it wonderful to see my community coming together to aid these amazing women in their mission. So many smiling faces, both young and old, there to support this much needed undertaking.
Sweet Ukrainian Mamma
I picked up my phone and called one of the women from the group and asked her if she could come out to collect my donation because I didn't have time to stand in line. I realized now I would have to explain to my youngest son why I didn't come home with some delicious home cooked Ukrainain food (like I had promised), but oh well such is life. The sweet Ukrainian mamma answered my call and came out right away. 
The back story here is that two days earlier I connected with a Ukrainian realtor friend of mine asking if he knew of any local Ukrainian organizations I could donate to. He gave me the phone number of Reverend Pavlo, the pastor at the Kelowna Catholic Ukrainian Church. I left a voicemail message and Father Pavlo called me back the next day. He then gave me Lillia's phone number and told me she was collecting donations for the purchase and transport of medical supplies to Ukraine. So I called her and explained my son is ex-military and has volunteered to go to Ukraine along with 30 other veterans on a humanitarian mission (under the direction of the Ukrainian government). She immediately asked if my boy would take over some supplies when he goes. So I did as she requested and asked my son and he agreed and said he would also speak to some of his buddies to see if they could take some bags too.
Community Connection
What I love most about the last few days is the proof that we have a fantastic community in Kelowna which is willing to connect, share and help when called upon! Life is filled with different people and various situation we must all learn to navigate. I may lose my son as he goes to help those who've already lost mothers, daughters and fathers but I'm proud of him as I am of Ukrainians because they're ALL willing to stand up and fight for FREEDOM and DEMOCRACY.
Although my mother's heart has been broken since learning last week of my son's plans to go to Ukraine, my human heart was filled with joy again today when I saw all these people lining up to help! It humbled me and reminded of a prayer I pray every morning. "Help me remain humble so Truth is revealed, acceptance achieved and expectations adjusted, no matter the outcome."
Awareness of Truth
As I write this blog tonight, I'm reminded of a lesson life taught me back in 2016, as I sat by my sister's hospital bed while she recovered from the removal of one of her lungs due to cancer. And that is this: "We have no power or control over when we're brought into this world or when we leave it, so why do we struggle to have power and control while here?"
We all struggle with something, and no matter how big or small it is. It's my belief that there's always an answer if one is willing to become aware of Truth and humbly accept it. "​Becoming aware of and humbly accepting Truth generates a natural resolve to trust. Focusing on a problem or an expected outcome limits materialization of new realities, whereas restricting expectations and trusting Truth opens doorways to endless possibilities."
Now that I know there's only one thing I can control in life, that being to humble myself, where does this leave me? It leaves me resolved to trust Truth, for it's the sole place one can find peace in a world filled with heartache and pain. 
Trust or Expectation 
I've learned that understanding the difference between trust and expectations is critical. Trust at its core is an unconditional expectation or more simply put, an unrestricted belief in the integrity of someone or something. A great example of trust is ones willingness to jump on a trampoline. You trust that the trampoline has been engineered to handle the weight and tension bouncing creates, so you climb on and jump.  
An expectation, on the other hand, can be labeled as a premeditated resentment or an assumption that disappoints. When the outcome your expectation creates is different than you imagined, a resentment is generated. To be clear it’s not unreasonable to have an expectation, it’s what you do with your expectation once it's not been met. If you remain humble and fluid when an expectation falters, you will continue to be at peace because you trust in the Truth that there is always an answer. This is why I pray every morning, "Help me remain humble, so Truth is revealed, acceptance achieved, expectations adjusted, no matter the outcome."
In these uncertain times, I encourage everyone to pray this prayer, so you too can have the peace that passes all understanding. 
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