Self-Care

What does self-love look like anyway?

By |2024-02-08T22:07:11-08:00Feb. 13, 2023|

A few posts ago, I reported that, when asked by my helpful coach Amanda about a future worth getting well for, I couldn’t picture a life without my beloved Trond. That realization shocked us both, but it didn’t mean I wanted to die; it meant I wasn’t yet ready to live again. Why get well when I couldn’t imagine what a meaningful life would look like?…

Who knew?

By |2024-02-08T22:10:45-08:00Jan. 25, 2023|

Who knew it would ever be a struggle to get two arms into a simple fleece? Or get up from a chair or pull up my pants? Hard to cut a piece of chicken or hold a cup of coffee? Or safely take a walk? And what about reading the tiny words in the many magazines I’ve had to cancel? Who knew? The Suzanne of even two years ago didn’t know. She hadn’t a clue. She can hardly believe it now. The good news is some of my problems might be correctable, if you don’t mind a little uncertain surgery.…

Sticks and Stones

By |2024-02-08T22:14:31-08:00Dec. 31, 2022|

“Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” Whoever says that and means it is either stone-cold oblivious or fully enlightened. I seem to be somewhere in between. The day before yesterday I was hit with a barrage of verbal abuse the likes of which I’ve never before experienced, thank God. Although I think I’m handling it pretty darned well…

On This Strangest Resurrection Morning

By |2024-02-09T10:41:52-08:00Apr. 17, 2020|

As I lay safely in bed Easter morning, this is the short Covid prayer/lament that came to me: As I look forward (so to speak) to the long gray hair that will add 10 years to my appearance, I work to feel as blessed as I absolutely am by my white, upper middle class privilege, in the midst of what for many is the nightmare of ten lifetimes.…

Uh Oh, It’s Christmas!

By |2024-02-09T11:00:19-08:00Dec. 19, 2019|

Eleven years ago the life coach I then was offered these words of would-be wisdom for dealing with the mother of all holidays. Have at my words and please share yours via comments.

I woke up the other 2008 late fall morning with that odd mix of anxiety and anticipation I’ve come to expect at this time of year. How can I do it all? Do I even want to? Why can’t it just be over? But strangely, those pesky questions arise alongside a mysterious, barely-contained joy…

Fighting The River is No Way to Live, Suzanne!

By |2024-02-09T10:59:52-08:00Jul. 24, 2017|

“Stop swimming, stop fighting.” These words rang loud and clear in the ears of my beloved teacher, Swami Kripalvanand, as he was swept away by the monsoon-swollen river Yamuna in India more than a half century ago. These same words, which came to him in the voice of his beloved teacher Dadaji, have lately come to me, if only from the old, familiar voice in my head.

“Stop swimming, stop fighting.” This simple admonition, which may have saved Bapuji’s life because he listened and let the water carry him safely to shore, might also save mine.…

A Confession of Neediness

By |2024-02-09T11:27:00-08:00Sep. 8, 2014|

If I had a prayer, it would be this: “God, spare me from the desire for love, approval, or appreciation. Amen.” In my last blog post, I shared that quote from Byron Katie’s brilliant book, Loving What Is, saying that it needs to be my prayer. I also said “As long as I look to anyone outside myself for love, approval or appreciation, I am bound to be disappointed or afraid of being.” Amen to that, too!

At the time, I was experiencing the most outlandish verbal assaults ever directed my way. They came out of the blue from an old friend who purports and has reason to appreciate me, and whom I really want to support. Pretty disturbing stuff, even though I understand it isn’t personal.

I return to Katie’s prayer again now because I realized this morning there’s another situation that calls me to heed her drastic stance. Although the spurning I am experiencing this time around is far more subtle and less critical to my long-term wellbeing than the other one (and it may not be spurning at all), there is a distinct parallel between my unhappy reactions that bares examination.…

Joy From Suffering

By |2024-02-09T11:35:15-08:00Jun. 17, 2014|

Oh, dear God, the things we do to each other—and to ourselves—the ongoing Boko Haram and ISIS massacres being but the terrible tip of the iceberg. I can barely stand it sometimes, and yet I must, if I am to be of service to the very ones among us who destroy each other. I’ve got to be able to stand it, and to stand in joy in spite of it all.

I’ve got to be able to stand it because the nasty stuff we do to each other is as much a part of the earthy, mortal mix we call life on Planet Earth as our good times and acts of greatness. We are all of it. It’s a complete package, the good right along with the bad and the ugly. We can’t have the stuff we want without embracing the shit that we don’t. And I’ve got to stand in joy in spite of it all because: is there any doubt we need more joy in the world? Also, I’m good at joy.…

Summer Lessons of Sticks and Stones

By |2024-02-09T11:44:44-08:00Sep. 18, 2013|

Who said words can never hurt you?

Well, they were wrong, at least about me. For almost two months I’ve been balanced on the edge of a sword that showed up laser-like out of nowhere and is only now showing signs of letting me off. Mean words have been part of it, and they hurt. I am here to discover my part in it, however great or small.…

Please come on my elephant ride!

By |2024-02-09T11:59:55-08:00May. 28, 2013|

I am doing my little happy dance and eager to share the good news. I just submitted my first blog post to the wonderful, wildly popular elephantjournal.com. It’s a reader-created open forum bringing together people like us who work & play to create an enlightened society.

Elephant has more than 100,000 likes on Facebook and presents the possibility of a whole new league for my work.…

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