Posted in Comedy, Tragedy and What the F...?

Have A Grateful Day

iStock_000015408259XSmallTo me, it seems like the world is going fucking crazy. I can’t watch too much news or my heart will break at how ugly and mean the national discourse has grown. There’s a fine balance between wanting to be informed and wanting to walk in peace.

I find myself looking for moments in which I can take a deep breath and fill my heart with gratitude. And let me tell you they are abundant. The idea of gratitude is not to escape the problems and pains of life, the idea of gratitude is to replenish so that I can, in some small way, make a positive impact in my world.

This past week, while on vacation, I went looking for a stamp, so that I could mail a card to my friend. You’d think that would be an easy thing to find in a resort town. Not the case, though. No one had stamps. The umpteenth cashier gestured toward a doorway. “Maybe there,” she said, waving her arm. The maybe there led me to the parking lot. Oh well. Then, I noticed a postal truck. I approached the postwoman unloading things from the back.

“Excuse me,” I said. “Do you know where I can buy a stamp?”

“How many do you need?”

“Just one.”

“Here you go,” she said.

I gave her 50 cents, stuck the stamp on my card and she smiled at me. “I’m happy to take that for you,” she said.

“Thank you.”

That was one of those moments, when the universe just flings its doors open wide and whispers there is so much goodness in life. I don’t see them all the time because I am preoccupied with other seemingly important things in my brain.

The great 17th century mystic, Meister Eckhart, said: “if the only prayer you ever say is thank you, it will be enough.”

Sometimes I remember to close my eyes and take a deep breath and say thank you. I always feel better. It ‘s like the universe is saying thank you back. Thank you for being alive, for being a channel for the creative force.

These are harsh times and I don’t want to be sucked into the vortex of doom and gloom. I’ll watch some news. I will stay informed. I will not hide from the world’s problems. And I will do my best to be a light and remember how much goodness there is and how far a thank you can go. The universe is always opening to us. Gratitude is a good way to begin to see that. As my friend Jennifer always says, “Have a grateful day!”

Posted in Comedy, Tragedy and What the F...?

Dancing With Your Dreams

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Second Chapters–I know them well. The invention and reinvention of your self, each time trying to get life a little more right than the last time. A longing goes with that, an undercurrent that flutters in the heart that one day all of the jagged pieces of your jigsaw puzzled life will somehow make sense, fit together and reveal the big picture. I cannot mark the day that the picture came into focus, or a specific time where I wondered what would happen to me if I just forgave myself? There was not a celebratory realization or enlightenment. No, the process was slow and tedious, painful and sweet. Then one morning as I sat on the couch with my tea, staring into the fire, I realized that I was living the life that I wanted to be living. And somehow the dense forest of sufferings and sorrows, the thickets of doubts that had tripped me up, parted to reveal a light that shone on hard-won satisfaction for the trails that I had traversed with some awkwardness and some grace . . . and I knew that this was my time to dance.

This is the story in all of us as we make our way through the beautiful, horrible, wonder-filled life, longing to dance with our dreams. Revisions aside, I’ve moved onto Chapter 3, the place in the dramatic arch where the heroine has morphed into the warrior and just goes after what she wants, critics be damned. This is how I feel about my writing. Strong. Focused. Determined, with enough juice left in these old bones to make it all happen, or die trying.

It’s daring to dance with a dream. Go ahead. Life is leading you in that direction anyway, so you might as well surrender to it. Every single little thing leads and builds to the great decision when you choose to stand on the mountain and know that you will seize the day.

Happy New Year to all my fellow dreamers, all of my fellow writers. God speed.