Unite in LOVE

Each day we awaken to the beauty of life, if we so choose to see it.   These days it would seem there is a fairly large dose of FEAR in the world, and even some seeping into my own heart. At the moment the world’s fear is of terrorists, and unfortunately that has grown into fear of any thing different than self. Fear is creating divisive beliefs amongst us humans, and in my mind that is granting the terrorists their very wish. When we become divisive we start to turn away from one and other, we forget to love.

This fear mongering is occurring everywhere in mainstream media, and with our politicians some of who in America are suggesting we start documenting certain religious groups by implementing a registration of sorts. This harkens directly back to WWII when certain groups of people were required to register, some were relocated, etc. The most shocking part in all of this is that many people think this is a good idea! Why, because people are different, they don’t understand their religion, their beliefs, their customs and they have decided they are all terrorists, or could possibly be, and FEAR of that is motivating them to think crazy thoughts.

While I do not advocate any such type of registration of any peoples, I find myself falling into the FEAR category as to my beautiful son. He is finishing his Master’s program in New Zealand and will embark on the return to his home later today. I worry about the flights, the weather and of course the crazy people in this world. More worry is in my heart (FEAR) for his next plan in life. He intends to travel across Europe for approximately 5 months beginning in February.

That nasty bugger FEAR is not only creeping into the edges of my heart, it has invaded it! I am already suggesting which countries he should avoid visiting. He has acknowledged my fear and the situation of our current world by planning to stay away from many large western cities, and so it begins. He feels pained by my talk around FEAR and I feel pained around his plans to be gone so long. Does this mean the terrorists have won? This conversation would never have occurred prior to some of their recent killings to include Mali, Beirut, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Paris just to name a few. The image of these bad guys beheading humanitarians is almost too much for the mother part of my soul to handle. Yes FEAR is tugging at the corners of my heart too. However, I will attempt to not allow it to win. My son and his beautiful finance will travel Europe and they will be cautious and prudent. What crazy times we live in.

My hope for the world is that we unite, not separate and allow FEAR to win. We have to send out more LOVE than ever before, stop cursing people who cut us off while driving, stop being impatient with others, remember we are all human and we are all a little afraid right now in these times. No giving in to crazy talk about establishing registrations for certain religious groups! LOVE is what will unite us, and my wish is that we remember to LOVE everyone just a little bit more and get out of our own ego and practice empathy.


Posted in Musings | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Let there be Light

The world is blanketed today in a soft white covering, well at least my world. Today marks the first snow fall in our region, and it seems fitting for this day to be met with the softness of the pure white snow. It is Veteran’s Day, when we choose to honor all those who served in the military, oftentimes sacrificing themselves to the blood of war, and most assuredly sacrificing their families while they are absent from home. I stand in gratitude to each and every one who served in the military. While not a believer in a fighting machine, a bloated military budget, or war, I bow to those that served all over the world.

Today is also the birthday of my friend and neighbor who lost her battle with cancer early this spring. When she was alive I often found myself getting today and December 11 mixed up as her birthday for some reason. When I would show up with a token gift or card on December 11, she would laugh at me and say thank you. At some point I figured out her birthday was November 11, not December 11. How to remember that I wondered, yes I finally thought, it will always be on Veteran’s Day! Sitting here now, I am thinking of her and the service she offered to the world, for she was a teacher. Not just any teacher, but a Significant Special Needs teacher. She was made for that job, tough and strong enough to get the most from her children, and yet she knew when to be soft with them. The softness of the day is for you dear friend, so that you might rest now.

Yet another friend echoed the following thought to me when I called to thank her son for his service to our country, she said the world is not becoming any safer. Giving pause to that statement, I felt sad for her to feel afraid to live. All we have is this life, this one moment, and knowing that my other friend is gone and what her family would not give for just one moment, or myself for that matter with my beloved husband. Today right now this second is all we have; please do not miss the beauty that is at hand by living in fear. Practice gratitude for all you have right now. I look up and see the beauty of the freshly fallen snow, yes it is windy and cold outside, but the sun is peaking through from time to time, my dog is close to me and I am grateful for the fresh clean beauty of the new fallen snow and the rays of sun that allow for everything to grow. Grow with love, step into the light and celebrate it as it is done in Diwali (an ancient Hindu festival), the Festival of Light. Notice the significance of light in your life, warmly welcome the Divine into your heart and home, clean the smudge of fear from your windows and allow the light to shine brightly.


We don’t get wise by staying in a room with all the doors and windows closed. ~ Pema Chodron 

Posted in Musings | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments


Sipping a cup of the sweet goodness of Tulsi tea with my loving furry companion at my feet, I am reminded to be grateful. This is the month after all when people post their daily reasons for being grateful on social media, and yet I wonder why we only practice it for a month? Gratitude is something that should be found in every day that we are fortunate enough to open our eyes, take a breath, and be amongst the living. I suppose that this practice comes out of the American holiday of Thanksgiving where we are pausing for a moment to be grateful.

November can be a cold month, one where some of us find the wounding for our traumas of loss, just like any other month in the calendar year. All of us have experienced loss in some fashion, be it the loss of someone we love to death, the loss of a job, a marriage, a friendship, a lover, a limb. The list is endless as to what constitutes loss. It can leave us feeling cold and alone, numb. What if for one moment wherever you are sitting in terms of life and with whatever is sitting on your plate de jour you simply decided to feel gratitude? Gratefulness is the place where the heart opens and healing can begin, where the light is allowed to fill the cracks. When we practice gratitude, it changes how we see the world.

November is a wonderful month to begin such a practice, and to continue that practice each and every day in some ritual. Every morning as I open my eyes I pause and give thanks for all that is in my life. I have learned to focus on my blessings. This does not mean that there are no sad or trying moments in my life where I sit in darkness. There are equal opportunities for such feelings, but for as long as I am living I always have the choice to take a moment and be grateful. Try it today and everyday beyond these thirty days of November and see if your life and how you experience it doesn’t begin to shift toward more light and love.


Posted in Musings | Tagged , , | 1 Comment


The other day as I ran along the path, I felt an irritation in my shoe. I ignored it and kept running, just like I am prone to do in my daily life, ignore things until they become problematic.   At some point it felt like I had a boulder in my shoe! This is a metaphor for a lot of my past life. Finally I acknowledged it, stopped and bent down to remove it. It was just a tiny little rock, actually more like a grain of sand. Laughing at myself for the discomfort it had affected in me, at my attempt to ignore it and then acknowledging it and making way for it, I suddenly thought of the Princess and the Pea where she was judged for her unsightly appearance, and had to prove her worthiness of being a ‘real’ princess before she was validated. Judgment was the lesson of the day for me, and one I have been working on for a long time, to include walking 500 miles across France and Northern Spain in an attempt to lighten the load of my judgments.

Attempting to see things as they really are without judgment is a daily exercise for most of us, as can be seen in the story of The Princess and the Pea. We so often judge a situation before we have any facts, and one could further question how might we know what fact is truth? In practice, there is a state of liberated judging called “upeksha”, which means non-attachment or equanimity. It means to be able to walk freely between attraction and aversion, likes and dislikes, praise and blame, without attaching to one side or another. However, one thing it clearly does not mean is to ignore when someone is doing harm to others.

Maintaining this equanimity can feel like hanging off the side of a cliff. On one side you are moralizing and on the other you are an enabler. Above all you must keep ego out of the equation. It takes practice, falling down and getting back up again and again. It takes stopping and acknowledging when there is a problem, and investigation. Once we remove the pebble or acknowledge the pea, peeling back the layers and doing the inner work then we can begin to sit in this place of “upeksha”, and along with the practice of love, compassion, and joy we can know how to heal the illnesses of anger, sorrow, insecurity, sadness, hatred, loneliness, and unhealthy attachments.


Whence thine eyes see equanimity in all things; this is peace.
~ Christine Horner

Posted in Musings | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Blessings for the Earth

Walking into the woods, I find forgiveness. I find my soul awakened by the dew on the fresh grass, by the crispness in the air, by the smell of fallen decayed leaves all intermingled with the sweet smell of pine. The Earth is caressing my feet, and I wish peace for both Mother Earth and my soul. It strikes me that we have both been put through some major testing, and perhaps she far more than me. I ache for what we have done to her, all of us in one-way or another who have shone disrespect. I practice Ho’oponopono for her healing, as well as my own.

She gives us so much bounty, and yet we are traders of her great gifts by exploiting them for our own material gain.  She simply wished we would enjoy the bounty, take care of her and tread lightly. Some understand her wishes; some like me through time and space begin to commune with her. When we can start to feel this connection is when the real healing of both can begin.

Today I urge you to take a walk in nature, and really witness all that is born. Take each step as if you are kissing the Earth (Thich Nhat Hanh) and really feel this, let it sink deeply into your soul. Ask for her forgiveness, forgive yourself and others that you may have hurt, practice Ho’oponopono in its simplest form: I love you; I am sorry; please forgive me; and thank you. Practice this simple blessing for the Earth, for yourself and others. Release it all, and step back allowing the universe the gift of its great healing powers.


Be humble for you are made of Earth. Be noble for you are made of stars. ~ Serbian Proverb

Posted in Musings | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Fearless Dating Life of a Widow

Dating is one thing that confounds me, especially at this point in my life. How do you meet people you might be interested in? Of course, the answers are simple and complex ranging from joining a group one is interested in, have a friend fix you up, to online dating. Yes, I have done them all and found none of them very fulfilling. With no intention of being cynical, I wonder if at this stage all the good ones are off the market, or upon further reflection perhaps I am becoming more jaded to the process as time goes screaming forward. Today I am a 55-year-old attractive, fit widow. Not relishing using the word ‘widow’ to describe myself, it is just another thing I don’t fully perceive how to integrate into my persona. And, it isn’t like I woke up yesterday and become a widow either; I have been one for almost 11 years now!

Blessings do abound in my life and motherhood is one, I have a wonderful son who lives on the other side of the world. For now, our relationship is one of Facebook texting and the occasional face time phone call. Just by reading and writing these words, it is evident to me how much I miss the human interaction with my beautiful son. I also have a group of beloved women friends, and a loving family, as well as a perfect furry friend, my sweet dog. On so many levels, my life is wonderful, and yet I would like to have a companion once again, and so this morning I contemplated undertaking the online dating process yet again.

In the past, the online experience has provided an abundance of dates as well as what I thought was going to be a solid relationship, sadly it did not turn out that way and I ended up being very hurt. In an effort not to duplicate that experience, I have done a lot of work on me since that time. Also I am not looking to date a lot of men, I would prefer a relationship. So this morning after reading that this is a good astrological time for romance, I thought what the hell I will check in with the online forum once again. The first thing that pops up is the guy I feel hard for 5 years ago! He is my best match! Really, seriously in what way I think to myself! I am shocked; my blood pressure rises as I sort through the nonsense. Why would I ever be a good match with a full-fledged narcissist I think to myself! And then I step back and am reminded once again of why online dating pulls me down so much, it takes a lot of sorting through the sludge to perhaps find one that has potential. I for one do not usually have that kind of time or energy. I will have to keep on hoping that I am going to meet an interesting guy at the grocery store, the airport, or in line somewhere. Meantime, I am going to continue to love my family, friends, my sweet dog and most importantly myself. I recognize how fully blessed I am and just how much I have to be grateful for, and sorry online dating you don’t get much of it right on how you make matches. After all, how could you, love is much more than a few carefully crafted words someone scribes, which may or may not be true after all!

As a postscript, as I wrote this a couple of months ago, I did in fact invest some time and energy into online dating. It has, as I surmised, turned out to be less than promising. They either have not read my profile, or they are just too weird. Of the couple with whom I decided to exchange emails and phone calls, as well as arrange a date, I had an okay experience on one date, not great and I have a sneaking suspicion that at his underlying core he might be gay, and the other stood me up just this morning, saying he could not meet for our planned hike today, he didn’t sleep well. Really, well neither did I, but I still planned to go through with the hike!  Perhaps this is all for the best since he wormed his way in (clearly ignoring what my profile said and I set it aside too) as he had a young child, I mean really young, as in eight (8) years old. Why do I allow myself to be manipulated when I attempt to set boundaries? Apparently I need to work on how I ground myself and establish boundaries. Does it sting a little? Yes, it most certainly does, as ego never desires rejection. Work, there is work to do on my self of that much I am aware, and it leads me right back to what I previously wrote. . . do I really want to invest the time and energy into online dating? I cannot honestly answer that question at this moment.

I went on the arranged hike alone today, and I turned it into a run. I conquered an almost 2,000 foot vertical incline that occurs in approximately 1.2 miles and the remaining miles in under 2 hours. Kudos to my body for carrying me that far, kudos to my soul for sitting at the top for a few moments and taking the time to slow down and actually experience the feeling that all time had stopped. Kudos to me, for shucking fear to the door, but the question remains have I really? Am I really ready for anyone to enter my life, or is my life best spent celibate? There is soul-searching to be done here for certain.

FullSizeRender (6)

It may be that when we no longer know which way to go we have come to our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is one that sings.   ~ Wendell Berry

Posted in Musings | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

Gratitude for this Blustery Autumn Day

Reflecting on the moment, feeling gratitude for all that is. Life has been full of opportunities to grow, which translates into the simple fact that there were challenges. Oftentimes when sitting in the muck of the moment, it can seem overwhelming, like one is drowning and can do nothing to stop it.   Truth is that we must sit in the darkness to be able to recognize the light. Why? Well, that is an answer I simply do not know. There are many depths of loss and sorrow, but sooner or later we will all know them to some extent. People may think it strange to hear me say I am grateful for my losses. Yes, grateful for they have birthed a new me. One that is stronger, healthier, more grounded and less judgmental. To me those are wonderful gifts to have received in life. Would I have preferred the gifts without the losses, of course, but I am not so certain that is how it works, at least not for me.

On this blustery autumn day when the beautiful golden leaves are being torn from their tenuous hold of the sturdy trees, I am left with the remembrance of a similar day when I walked trance like out of the hospital without my husband, alone to face the new world that was mine to create on a rather raw pallet. This was not a place of comfort or warmth, it was wickedly surreal and yet odd for time seemed to have stopped, perhaps it stopped when his heart ceased to beat any longer. Yet, there I was walking out into the sun-streaked canvas of the world, blinded by my new realty.

Some 11 years later I can say without hesitation that I like this new me far better than the one walking out of that hospital. She is stronger, braver, more courageous and wealthy in terms of her spiritual growth. Life has certainly not been easy in many ways since that day, but I stand in grace to be able to recognize all the magnificent gifts I have been given from special friends, my son, my dog, my family and the universal connection of love. Thank you is all I can say. Thank you for the grace and the opportunity to have experienced love and loss.


When it is dark enough, you can see the stars. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Posted in Musings | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments