The Language of the Universe (needs an interpreter)

Signs. Signs. Everywhere are signs…. if only we could interpret them the right way.

I’ve spent the last couple of years praying, pleading, asking, begging, manifesting, and wishing the Universe would send me a sign; any sign. Show me the next step; give me a lucky break; send me a vivid dream that lays out the path; have a mysterious person show up at just the right time please! Anything!

But instead, I get silence. Or so it seems.

I’ve always envied those stories of the luckier folks, who say that they had a grand vision one day while down with the flu, or they had a dream about a small store in Taos and they woke up and understood that the Universe was telling them to go to Taos. Maybe they woke up and starting typing, and the Universe gifted them a book in the making.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been strongly drawn to the written word, quotes in particular. I assign so much meaning to words and quotes, and use them to fuel me when I need strength to move forward.  One quote in particular comes from my favorite author and my favorite book, Paulo Coelho’s “The Alchemist”. I’ve had this quote hanging in various spots throughout my house for years:

“When you want something, all the Universe conspires
in helping you to achieve it.”

I’ve been spending some time lately learning that the Universe doesn’t exactly speak loudly, nor does it speak in my language. It really speaks in more of a whisper. I’ve learned that I have to pay very close attention to things, and maybe to also interpret each oddity, each chance encounter, each moment that causes my sixth sense to perk up… to interpret them quite a few different ways before I can quite understand what it is the Universe is trying to tell or teach me. Continue reading

Yes, You Can Die of a Broken Heart

The year 2016 has not been kind to actors and musicians. I won’t even start with the long list of those who succumbed to the curse of  2016, but in the week between Christmas and New Year’s 2016, we were all stunned when Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) died one day, and her mother, Debbie Reynolds, the next. 

Initial news reports pegged the cause of death as a stroke, but today people are gossiping and questioning and whispering about whether she in fact died of a broken heart after the grief of losing her daughter Carrie. I happen to have some personal experience with the idea of dying from a broken heart. Continue reading

Captain and Crew of My Ship: A Story About Traveling Solo

I used to be obsessed with travelogues written by solo female travelers. I would read wide-eyed about these fearless women who thought nothing of hopping a plane to Uzbekistan or the Chilean Andes or some remote island in the South Pacific, with apparently no concern for their safety and the ability to pack light. I longed to be one of those women, yet didn’t have the gusto or the green to do so.

In my early professional years, when I was broke and scrounging for cash, I managed to travel a heck of a lot more than I do now that my paycheck is almost four times as much. A stress filled job and too much responsibility means no energy left to even plan a trip, yet alone travel. In the early years I went to Ireland, Costa Rica, drove up the PCH 1 from Big Sur to wine country, traveled to Toronto to witness Caribana, crammed into a car to drive all the way across the country to watch my beloved Badgers in the Rose Bowl, almost died during a whitewater rafting trip in Bozeman, Montana, breathlessly hiked mountains in Colorado and Zion National Park, soaked up the sun in Sedona, the Florida Keys, and zig zagged my way across Mexico.

Yet all of these trips happened with travel buddies. Save for the flight in or flight out, I was always with a gal pal or two on these adventures. Fast forward to today, where I find myself a 43 year old single, childless woman, surrounded by 43 year old married with child(s) friends, and I have almost no choice but to become a solo traveler. (No way in hell I am joining those singles trips!) Continue reading