Fully Committed

“Work hard. Play hard. Love hard. Be soft.”

One thing that is sure in this life, you need to be fully committed to it. Whatever it is. While it may be hard to hush all of the distractions that buzz around us daily, this is the only way to be I order to live a full life, in every glorious moment. (Yes, I do realize that may not be what some readers firth thought about me and being “fully committed…)

For me, when I decided to take on a challenging new project, that meant fun com.itting to it, head down, in order to understand all the technical aspects and be able to write and speak intelligently on the topic. It has been a lot to grasp and much hard work wrapping my head around the product and project.

But it is extremely fulfilling to fully commit and whily be in those moments.

Conversely, it is equally fulfilling in my personal life, a fact that becomes more apparent as I turn off the computer and get in the Uber heading to the airport. Since I was a child I’ve always held planes as magic. Any trip that involved a plane was full of possibilities and wonder.

I have worked hard over the last few weeks, especially the last few days, getting everything ready for the trip. Not long, just 5 days of pure unplugged bliss with my man and his family. A reunion of sorts in two of my favorite cities on the planet, where two of my favorite people also happen to live.

As the plane takes off, the air is full of possibilities. Smell that? That is the scent of FUN and laughter and love, and stories, good food, great company and memories being made. It is the scent of being fully committed to this moment, it all of its magical glory.

And when I return? It will be snuggles with my fur babies and sleeping in my own bed, the most comfortable bed on the planet. And then getting up and being fully committed to working hard and doing what needs to be done.

Life is short. Time is precious. So whatever you do, be committed, be fully in it, be so immersed in the wonderful details that you make even the most ordinary moments your own special kind. Be fully committed to your life, and reap the rewards.

Home Returns

“Just because it’s familiar and comfortable doesn’t mean it’s yours.” – Ada

While this may sound like a warning not to have an affair with an ex, it is actually somethjng much more ssignificant. This is the thought that came to my mind as I looked at the Atlanta skyline. For 17 years this skyline was my home. It is most familiar to me, as the skyline of Houston is still hard for me to recognize. And yet, home is not home anymore in the ATL, because Atlanta is no longer my home. And that is more than just where I live geographically. It is a feeling that carries a specific weight with it. And it permitted every part of my trip to take care of some loose ends.

The streets were comfortable, I knew the way from the airport, from the correct traffic lanes to which shortcuts to take to avoid delays. I knew the streets and the neighborhoods. Memories where all around – there is where I met that guy on a date, this place has the best Mexican food, that is where my Dad liked to eat Rubins and there is where he lived when he died. This is the trail and park I loved to walk, here is my favorite coffee spot, that is my favorite dive bar and there is the best movie theater….

And yet, so many things had changed and it was not the same city I left a 18 months ago. Crime is up, and many places I used to fequent are no longer safe. Indeed, it felt like a bit like the twilight zone – things looked the same, but were starkly different, as if in a parallel universe.

But the visit was magnificent, and it was good to see friends most loved and missed, those that were not there for the last visit. There qas laughter and catching up, and eating at our favorite spots, and celebrations, and butter cake. And there was the wonderful reminder that

You can always go home means something different now. Because that no longer my home…the saying now means that you can make a new space your home, visit and enjoy your old space, then go home where you belong, where your heart is, and where your future lies.

Life is short. And returning to your old stomping ground may be comfortable, more often than not it is no longer home. Because it is no longer your present or your future. So enjoy the visit, and but take a moment to reflect how far yiu have come.

20 Years

This day, September 11th, will always be remembered by those who were old enough to experience it. At the risk of sounding old, the younger generation has no idea what it is like to see, either in person or on the news, an area that vast, where rescuers are still looking for remains even a year later. They have no idea what it is like to know people who were or should have been in those buildings, wondering if they were still alive that day, or if they were one of the many who jumped or were buried alive.

They have no idea the panic of calling that friend, or family member, over and over, desperately praying they answer so you know they are OK. Nor do they know the relief when that call is answered…or the devastation when it isn’t.

They have no idea what it was like to go and see Ground Zero, before it was built back up, before there were monuments and new buildings, when it was just a huge hole, larger than you could ever imagine, and know that so many people were now part of that dust.

To me this day is a somber one, but one we should never forget because there are so many lessons that were learned. It was the day our innocence was lost as a country, I think.

But for me it is also a day to be thankful. Thankful that I live in this wonderful country. No matter how many problems we seem to have, at least we are free. And I am thankful for that freedom. That were are still Americans and not subject to Sharia Law. That as a woman, I am still allowed every right I had before that date so many years ago.

I am thankful for my job and amazing career, for my friends, and that we are all OK. That we work hard and have a roof over our heads, food, running water, electricity, a comfortable bed where we sleep and do not hear the sounds of guns shots and war, as many in other countries do.

For me this is a day to be thankful and realize how lucky I am, how lucky we are, as a nation. And I thank God.

And every day, I should do my bet to be my best, because by miracle and luck, I am in this country, the greatest country in the world. And I should not take anything for granted. Life is delicate and fragile. And today is not a dress rehearsal.

Life is short. Make it good. Make it memorable. Make it worth it.

Happy 85th

Hi Daddy,

Tomorrow is your 85th birthday, and the 5th birthday without you. It’s hard to believe that it has been that many of your birthdays without you. I loved celebrating your birthday. Our little tradition of me giving you socks. I remember your 70th birthday when I gave you 70 socks.

I remember so many things about you, like y our voice, your smile, your funny one liners. I remember the advice you gave me, and the last time we ate boiled peanuts. And I remember how much you loved Mom. And how much she loved you.

I just want you to know that you were the best Daddy in the world, and thank you so much for being mine. Thank you for everything.

And happy birthday Daddy. I hope you and Mom and happy where you are, and that you look out after me. I love you always and miss you forever.

The Morning Slow

In this day and age of everything has to be done now and immediately, is there any such thing as a slow morning? Why yes, there is.

This morning I woke up slow, hit the snooze button several times. Upon getting up it was snuggle time with the kitties. Then it was the morning routine of brushing teeth and facial care. I put on my long feather robe and walked downstairs in the matching high heeled feather shoes, made coffee and then retuned upstairs for stretching, meditation and prayer.

This slow, thoughtful and purposeful start of the morning set the tone for the rest of the day, as meeting and deadlines loomed every closer. And yet, there was calm.

My mother always told me that how you start your day would determine how it goes. Indeed, when you start the morning off rushed, in a bad mood, maybe even arguing, that sets the tone for the day too. And it;s not a good one. So if you have a choice, be intentional with how you are start the day, Be mindful with where your thoughts are in the beginning.

Some people do this by being a champion of organization and a schedule, as my mother was, and certainly it might be easier. I am a bit more of a loose cannon. But what she said stuck with me. And so now, more than ever, I think we need to start the day off slow.

Life is short. And the world is crazy enough right now, make sure you take the time to enjoy the sunrise, center yourself, set your spiritual intention and humbly pray that you are the best that you can be today. It makes all the difference.

Imposter Who?

This is the day and age of labeling everything with a snazzy new name. And the human condition does not escape this tendency either. So I was so curious when I heard about the Imposter Syndrome. Imposter Syndrome is defined as: a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their skills, talents, or accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a “fraud”.  I call this part of life. We all have doubts and fears about our abilities, so why is there suddenly a psychological pattern? And where do you think the saying “fake it till you make it” comes from?

Here is a news flash: None of us actually know what we are doing. We are all just trying to figure out life. Do we really need a condition that most of us would fall into? trust me, that person that looks like that they have it all figured out…they don’t. They may have some, or even most if life figured out, but trust me, they don’t have it all together all of the time.

All of us, no matter how together or secure, are unsure of ourselves and what we can and cannot do. All of us are new to something at some point and have absolutely no idea what we are doing. All of us have a first day, many times in a lifetime. That is part of life, it’s part of growing and learning. Is it uncomfortable? Yes. But it is how we grow. The saying is that we shod do one thing every day that scares us. Why is that? Because we aren’t supposed to know everything.

Why, if this is part of the human experience, is it labeled as bad? Where it is written, and why are we taught to expect that we should feel comfortable and knowledgeable in all topics and parts of our life?

That is what puberty is all about – being awkward and trying to figure out who and what you are. And the thing is…that is just the start of it. How boring life would be if we already knew enough to always felt comfortable and confident on our abilities. Why would we want to sanitize life to the point where we never felt normal human emotions just because they aren’t the happy ones? We have been programmed to believe that confusion, fear, insecurity are all bad. But maybe they are not. Maybe we can use these feelings to not only help us understand ourselves better, but also each other.

Being unsure and a bit uncomfortable also gives us the opportunity to develop. Things of the first time you try to play an instrument. It probably sounded terrible. But often a lot of practice and hard work, you made it through your first recital. And, slowly, eventually, you came more and more comfortable. Until you felt proud of the progress you had made. And maybe now you are a master. That is the precipice of hard work and perseverance. And how sad life would be if we were stripped of that opportunity. Think of the pride of working hard to master a skill or knowledge set?

So embrace that you don’t know. Embrace that you have doubts. Embrace the beautiful mess that you are. Because we are all a mess in our own ways. We are all doing the best that we can, and we are all sometimes unsure of our footing. Don’t shut down when you feel fear or anxiety or insecurity, instead use them as motivation.

Life is short. Don’t worry if you don’t know. Just do the best that you can and let the chips fall where they may. If someone thinks you are an imposter, that’s their problem, not yours. And what they think of you is none of you business.