Travel is one of the many things that makes life wonderful. To have the opportunity to travel, especially with those you love, to see new things in new places and have new experiences, fuel the curiosity on our souls. We must always be curious, always strive to learn and see and feel the world around us. Traveling is one way to do that.

A few years ago, I had the chance to take several trips that would have been wonderful, but family obligations kept me from those opportunities. Now that I am not encumbered but such responsibilities, the freedom to travel brings many opportunities that I have recently taken.

One such trip was to San Diego. While I had visited California several years ago, I had never visited seen that area. It was a quick whirlwind trip and much fun was had.  There was laughter and good food, new sights and wonderful thoughts.

Friday was the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier turned museum. It was fascinating to see the scale of the vessel, to see the equipment and where the sailors lived. It was fascinating to see the planes and bombers from WWII. They had stories of the planes and the pilots who flew them.  And it made me think of my Dad, and how much he studied the WWII planes and warships.

And then we went into one of the engineering and equipment rooms and I saw the kinds of computers my mother worked on. She sued to describe the computers, with dashboards of unlabeled lights flashing, a place where codes where read and sent out, and also about reels of tapes with information.  All of it was right there, and I could see for the first time, the kind of computers and hardware my mother used.

And we went into a Russian submarine, I think the very one that was in the Cuban Missile Crisis, which my mother worked when in the Pentagon. She was doing the cryptanalysis – working on intercepting and interpreting the Russian codes. So to be there, in that submarine that I had heard stories about from my Mom, was incredible.

And in those moments, I wished my parents could have been there, could have seen it all. But I guess they already did, in their day. But the stories they could tell, and the expression on their faces would have been even more amazing. So I looked, and listened, and was amazed, and smiled. I appreciate my parents more and more every day.

After the history lessons, there were many miles of walking, great meals, laughter, exploration of the area and surrounding islands and a very thankful heart.  Life is an adventure, and you never know when adventure may find you. When it does, go for it. I took care of what I needed to do, and then, even more adventures came around. SO if you can’t go now, don’t worry. Life may be short, but there are always more opportunities.  And sometimes, because our view can get so myopic, we forget how big the world is, and how many chances we get. And we get many.

Life is short. Do what you need to do, then take time to adventure and play afterward. The reward for a well handled life, are more chances for adventure.

The Beauty of the Human Condition

Maybe what makes us beautiful as human beings is the knowledge that deep down, where the Soul meets the heart, and the Heart beats quietly, that no matter what darkness is around us, that light will always run through us. Maybe it’s that what makes us beautiful is the belief, the love, the audacity, the Bravery, the honesty, to truly believe that the light will always conquer the dark and that we will always persevere. Maybe that is the key not only to the Human spirit, but the Human Condition.

Into the Groove

Me and Madonna, we’re close. Thick as thieves, we are..

There comes a time on all of our lives that we finally feel 100%, or even 110%. Maybe it is after a divorce, or a job loss, or other rough life events. And those life events can take a lot of out of, and healing is required even after the events are long over. Many people are under the impression that as soon and the bad event or tough time is over, then we bounce back immediately. But that is not the case, at least I have found.  We still need time to recover and heal. Get out feet back under us and catch up on all that we missed while we were out dealing with life.

And is it any wonder?  When you are going through a hard time, you are in survival mode. Your time and effort go into taking care of the very real hardships that are on your plate and there isn’t any room for anything else. It is amazing the amount of energy it takes to survive during those times. You cannot enjoy a pretty day, because you are taking care of one crisis after another, making sure all bases are covered.  When in this mode you cannot notice all the little wonderful, beautiful small miracles in life because it is a miracle you can even get through the day.

And then, we heal. We look around and see and hear laughter, only to realize it is our own. And we linger in the mirror, because we missed our own smile, and it is beautiful to us. And we go on about our lives, looking up, looking around at all the things we missed, ever thankful.

But in this day and age of global warming, painful politics and the fact that the world is going to end ion 12 years, is there any such thing as happiness? And if so, where do we find it? There are thousands of books on this topic, and even more memes on social media proclaiming we must first find happiness within ourselves. And this is true – up to a point.

What, you need the outside to keep you happy inside?!? Well, just hear me out.

No matter how together and peaceful we are on the inside, life happens., and a little drama will happen in everyone’s life.  Because there are things that are out of our control. A loss of a job, losing a loved one, or a relationship, are all things that we cannot control. Toxic people, whether family, friends or coworkers can wreak havoc to our inner peace. Because we cannot control what others do. And when any of these things happen, or several happen one right after the other, it can throw us off balance.  And there is a natural [process to getting over traumatic and stressful events.  We may get angry, sad, depressed, defensive, hurt…or any of the other many human emotions.

One of the major keys to happiness is to make your exterior world as peaceful as possible. Get rid of toxic people who suck life and energy out of you. Going to a job you hate? Work hard to find another one. In a bad relationship? Leave, or kick them out. Trust me, it’s worth it. Extrapolating what is important to you and losing anything that is irrelevant or impedes happiness and peace will expedite healing. Drama and tough times will still happen, but those times will show you your priorities and help with the clean out once you are ready.

And when all those exterior issues have been silenced, it will be much easier to move forward in a substantial way. It is hard to keep yourself grounded when there is nothing but quicksand around you. Once you get out of that quicksand, you can then regain footing on solid ground on which to rebuild your foundation for life. You just have to steady yourself enough to leave in the meantime.

And when you do the work, both interior and exterior, maintenance becomes easier. It is as if the sun shines just to tell you how beautiful the world it is. And when you have been through this kind of journey, the trees can make you laugh, the wind can bring you to tears and a flower can tough you deeply. You appreciate so many of the little things. And you become protective of your peace and less likely to let anyone disturb it. Because you fought for it and earned it. You find your groove again, your rhythm, yourself and your happiness.

And this is where I find myself now – back in the groove.  It is not just that life is going well. It is that I am doing well. I am healed from all that the past brought.  I have let go of what I carried – the pain, the responsibility, the anger, the heartbreak, and you. Yes, I have even let go of you too. And I step into the groove, into the future of whatever this life has to give me.

And it shows.  Doors are opening up for me, opportunities and goodness. Love in all of its forms, in all of its splendor, is here for my tasting. I am laughing more than I have in years. I am breaking out in spontaneity dance, walking on my tiptoes and singing in the shower. I am smiling and feeling wonderful. I am functioning at more than 100%, but then I do have some time to make up for.  And it feels so good.

It is the start of the 11th month, and I am so excited for that this next year has to bring. Already there are plans in the making that will set it up for a spectacular ending of this year, and a wonderful beginning to the next. All I have to do is walk through the door.

But it has been a long road, a battle, so to speak. And I have done a lot of work, a lot of everything. And now I plan to enjoy what that work, what all of, has given me. Because I have earned it.

Life is short. Work hard, play hard, love hard and believe with all of your heart, that it will all be worth it. Because it is.

Less a Day of Worry

So many people fear getting older. Another year, another wrinkle, another pound, another gray hair. In this day and age of old is out and younger is best, can it be possible to be happy about aging? Absolutely.

Looking back, what a difference a year makes. This time last year, I was warried and worried, dealing with the repairs to the family compound from the Category 5 hurricane. I think about all that has happened in this past year, and the promise of another year of getting older, as I feel the new pains in my body and hear the new sounds from my bones. And yet., I am happy and grateful for each year. I am not afraid of getting older, never have been.

How can I not be worried about the life or the future? The way I see it, worry is almost a badge of honor these days. If you aren’t awake at night worried, then you aren’t anyone…and do you even have a life? If you aren’t worried then you are obviously not an important person, because important powerful, people are always worried.

Yet, I sleep well. Oh, I still, have my list of irrational worries – like do I have enough laundry detergent for everything? Or that I don’t think there are enough sit ups in the world to give me a six pack. Or did I remember to turn the coffee pot off this morning? Or did my cats will bring more gifts of snakes, chipmunks, or mice? And I start to worry that maybe there is something wrong with me. There must be something wrong with me if I am not worried, right?

Wrong. I think that sometimes we worry ourselves right out of a happy life. Let’s face it, there will always be problems and issues in life, because rarely is everything perfect.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy it anyway.  And those things are going to be there whether we worry about them or not. Legitimate worry can be channeled into positive action. But unnecessary worry keeps us from sleeping and loving life.

Take a deep breath. Ask yourself if whatever it is will matter in 1 year, 5 years, ten years from now? Most of the time the answer will be no. Because our lives could be very different in 10 years, 5 years, even 1 year, even 6 months from now.

And maybe I say this after the wisdom of living 46, almost 47 years. Because each day is a gift and you don’t want to spoil it with all kinds of worry about things you can’t change. Enjoy the process of getting older. Society says we should worry about those aches and pains, vanity says we should worry about those wrinkles…but that worry only steals our joy for today. And I have never been one to listen to what society says anyway. Maybe I am getting rebellious in my years. Or maybe I am just thankful for each day, and the opportunity to have more wrinkles.

Life is short. Work hard. And if it won’t matter in 5 years, take a deep breath and do the best you can. If it really is about the journey as much as the destination, then you have to find the joy in there somewhere. Celebrate life, getting older, and tell worry to go bother someone else. You are too busy enjoying getting older and better and happier.



Maybe what makes us beautiful as human beings is the knowledge deep down where the Soul Meets the heart and the Heart beats quietly, that no matter what darkness is around us that light will always run through us. Maybe it’s that what makes us beautiful is the belief, the love, the audacity, the face, The Bravery, the honesty, to truly believe that the light will always conquer the dark.

May the Psalm be With You

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

I went from having this wonderful family to no family at all, to having nothing and no one. And the family that was left did nothing but taunt and ridicule, wanting to cause as much pain as possible. And they did. Until I was broken, so profoundly broken in so many more ways and so many more pieces than I ever had ever been before.

Because I grew up believing that family was everything and that nothing was more important than taking care of your family. And I had done that. And yet there I was alone. And I didn’t understand it all. I didn’t understand how I kept true to my beliefs and values that I was taught and still ended up with nothing and no one. I felt alone. And abandoned.

And I know that I got through it, but there’s so many things that I don’t remember. I know that I got up, handled things, and went to work and ate and breathed and did laundry and drove and talked to friends and everything that’s involved in living. Some memories are extremely vivid, but mostly it is all a blur of “non memories.

So I really don’t know how I got through it except to say I did it by the Grace of God. And I would hear my mother’s voice. I was a shattered, empty shell of myself, but I remember my mom’s voice whispering to me, telling me to remember that I “had a steel frame inside me.” And I clung to that, I clung to my mother’s voice. And I prayed.

But my heart broke a thousand times a day in a thousand different ways. And I wondered how can I have ended up here, completely alone? Because I had given all my time, money and resources to building up the family. I had taken care of everyone…and now they were all gone. I didn’t understand why they were so angry and bitter towards me or why they enjoyed hurting and lashing out.

I know now though: When someone is compassionate and kind, those of smaller intestinal stature are threatened and become jealous. They know that they can never rise to that level. They know that they do not possess within themselves the ability to care or love as deeply. They hate that, and anyone who reminds them of it.

This is not a pity party or woe-is-me tale, it is rather a story of victory and rebuilding, of overcoming great distress and difficulty. And it is a story of redemption and being rewarded by God’s Grace, and Karma.

It’s been hard though, and it’s been heartbreaking, and I never thought that I would have to go through something like that. I never thought that I have no immediate family or that I would be so distant from them. The happiest I’ve ever been in my entire life was when they were all coming to my house, and I was cooking dinner for all of them and it was wonderful. I still see pictures of those times and feel it in my stomach because I know that time will never be again. I know it was such a special time – in a different life because it just seems so distant and so different from the world that I live in and the reality that I have now.

I never used to understand the psalm 23: “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”. I never understood how the rod and the staff could comfort anyone because they seem to be weapons. Now I understand that the rod and the staff protected me. Because they are strong, because they don’t break, because they rule with compassion. And if God’s rod and staff weren’t going to break, then neither was I.

Sometimes I still struggle, as it has only been a little of two years. I’ve worked hard not end up bitter, like them. And I’ve completely redefined my definition of family. Now I understand that boundaries must be placed, or your family will destroy you from the inside out. And that’s really sad.

My new definition of family is the people you love and love you the best. I filled my world with amazing people and I’m not alone anymore.

I and I am thriving. And as I thrive, the rest of the Palms makes sense as well. Because He has restored my soul and led me rest by peaceful waters, after leading me through the hardest times of my life. And now, he gives me my dreams, makes them come true, as my enemies look on, reading this blog. My cup is running over with good fortune that He has given me. And Because I have done good and right by Him, he is rewarding me with the kind of happiness and joy that only he can give.

So basically, all those haters can suck it.

Life is short. Do good. Forget the rest. And celebrate hard when your compassionate heart is rewarded by the King Himself. And may the psalm be with you.