Friends are lifting me up

it wasn’t long ago that I realized
that anything I had to offer anyone
was incidental.

try and try as I may, my contributions
and service always fell short of
my soul’s intention.

too much struggle in my own efforts
and not enough levity in my heart,
what can I give from that place,
but my emptiness?

my impact and influence on those around
me have been not the real way to be
a blessing, as my experience would show me:

being helped,
being lifted,
bringing that smile to others
who are there for me,
that’s the true joy I see in their eyes-

when they feel like they did something
good and their gifts were received.

when I want to “do” for others
it is when I find myself the
most “needing,” it’s like that,
unfortunately and yet innately
fair to recognize that

it’s an honest human equality,
it’s my truth…

allowing another’s love,
their efforts, their caring
to be heard, seen, respected,
appreciated.

receiving love, blessings, grace…
surrendering with gratitude to the goodness of others…

Grateful for so many
in-tune people to share this
adventure with
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If I were to…

open up and unfurl my inner poetess-process

I’d trace the skyline 🌃 of my heart’s city

with the finger of my imagination

And cover myself head to toe in fresh colors that smell of oil paint and spices

I may not make it to any meetings, appointments, or classes,

and I’d definitely not use a calendar 📆 except to color in the palette 🎨 of my life’s activities, exactly at times, and sketched at times,

and I’d cut out huge areas of clocklessness

i’d appoint each moment when it feels perfect and effortless 🔥 rather than schedule intersecting time-space happenings

i’d be cooking, and dancing, sculpting and then napping. I’d light incense and candles and then run through the woods, following the scents and tracks of animals…

I’d wear masks every day with purposefulness and intention, the feathers from my hair would stream in the wind as I follow the scent of dusk into dawn, and ride each day like an amusing dragon 🐉 of delights, streaming through the sky

unbeknownst to anyone….

Deepak’s 21 day meditation

This is the best Deepak series so far; I know, and I’m just only starting it today. In fact, I paused it, and took a picture of the screen so that I could share this forward so everyone else who wants to can benefit from joining this very large group meditation,  too. It’s Day 1! Today!

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So my schedule has fluctuated so much, and I have new things on my plate. A couple of weeks ago I saw the most patients of all the weeks previously, and by Wednesday, so all were in the first half of the week. Then last week I had a shift cancelation due to symposium and supervising decisions that resulted in a lot of free time, with a day’s notice – just when my plate was getting over-full with new things to do and midterms. So I used it and cared for myself. The good news for me is that I have everything mapped out in so many ways that I am able to move flexibly through it all, despite all the many unknowns that pop up, and the final result looks like it’s nearly inevitable. All my hard work will eventually reach its culmination, and I will have moved on…which simply means I can start all the creative things I’ve had on hold…

But not yet, nope… yet, the end for my current chapter (figurative)  is very near. And so many beginnings in other “new” areas of my life overlapping – even bigger. It’s like those places in the world where two oceans meet.

It’s exciting! **Mercury co-joins Jupiter** (within one degree orb today) and this is how I am experiencing it today!

Back to meditation…

 

Luck

Have you ever blamed yourself for something that wasn’t your fault?

I bet you have.

Doesn’t it work the other way, too? Given yourself credit for, no reason.

So many in the trend of thought talk
about ‘creating your reality’ with your
thoughts. While I do believe this,
I also believe that the belief, it can be taken too far. Too much emphasis can be placed,

on the personality, the contents of mind and action.

your thoughts are not you. they may be habits; they may float by in consciousness. They are not you.

free yourself from blame
that you really do not deserve. You
do not deserve all the good nor bad things
that happen to you. events are mostly neutral, even though most of us will agree about unpleasantness or joy of many types of circumstances.

free yourself from the burden of fixing
your mind. Your mind has its own life from you. Your whole life is going on, without your mind.

free yourself from your mind. this is possible as much as it’s not. But isn’t it worth the effort?

Then luck, in all its many forms, can find you!

Politics broken

the steam is disgusting, putrid
the clouds of lies are thick
with blame and people are
getting threatened every day.

Yet, every day someone else becomes
more courageous,

or is it just this need to breathe so
desperately?

families long-time divided
holding desperate silences,
fear of losing fake peace
coming, literally, from different places,
fearing loss of loyalty or confirming
it was there, just lack of love.

who can be secure in this world of human
desperation? politics and marketing campaigns, attentions gathered and divided,

who pays what for listening?

There is a call for freedom. It doesn’t look like its other forms;
perhaps formless,
perhaps astonishingly unbroken,
perhaps it’s a beginning.

we will move forward, damaged.

Free-falling into a new life

this was going to be a “it’s the blog’s end” post,
finished the blog. Its mission’s run out.
the long pause at the end of a winding
road, or maybe that will come tomorrow.

service has been disrupted in so many
ways, and the vision vacillates while
the complexities loom.

i was planning on finishing everything
i started, once I realized that in principle
was a principle, just a principle;
and these are my rules now, whimsy be what
it may, the life-force answers to itself.

accepting a better version of events
can be whatever they end up being, and an end
can redirect meaningful energies,
free up resources,
provide inspiration.

what about a re-route?

the whole path has been a splinter!

an impulse quickly turned into a million,
refracted directions,
when with camera: mirror-less direct
images captured on film, in no order
but the perpetual march of the order
that is already given by the continuity
of the space that the events take place in.

this guide is so agenda-less. she’s had no
reason to spread a vision, word, in so
many directions. She is, in essence, “inert,”
lovably all her electrons are full in her
outer shell.

she seeks no bonds.

still she returns, one by one, and moment
by moment, as each strange inspiration
lingers in the new ways that it does, when it’s still
a stranger, and we are sometimes excitedly
courting each other. The self that meets a new moment,

“what will you be, how will you become?”

Light.

A Selection of True Awakening Experiences Part 3

But first…

Below is what I wrote for Part 2: Starting ‘right here’ with an intro.

This is a selection I wrote for MeMyMagnificientSelf, where we are asked by our friend Barbara to share our awakening experiences with others. This is Part II of a two part sequence. My participation is here, below, in Part II. I had recently met the other participants while Part I was taking place, and/or had already been completed.

Beginning:

Awakening used to sound like an ending to me, so complete, and total and full.

But, I think of it as this endless continuity. It is almost a complete engagement, and yet it is so dynamic that it is always “in the process” of being engaged.

There’s this idea that “one” has access to everything, all that has ever existed. But that is not just an idea; it is a sense – a smell, a quality to the nature of connectedness.

There’s still the personality, and of course because there is absolutely nothing wrong with the personality.

There’s just a sense of being beyond the capacity that one originally set out with in the life, and perhaps a sense of connectedness to all the other lives that came before, including the soul’s journey.

There’s this sense of not knowing what’s ahead, but being nearly absolutely certain, most of the time, that this gift of life keeps giving to us, to me, to everyone. There’s this sense of constantly being in reception with source. There’s a deep relationship with the cosmos and with the pain and suffering of the world, but not in a way that is gripping or feels identifying. There’s a sense of ‘coming and going’ and it just sort of improves over time. The witness who is watching is not really the subject, and there really is no object, but it is the peacefulness of center-point, and the culmination of pointlessness.

The emotions get deeper; the connections with others become richer. People in your family that you may have thought you didn’t “get along with” show you their spiritual love for you. Disagreements on the personality level do not affect the deep nature of the connection. The connections deepen. Family members start to feel understood and “seen” by you – as simultaneously the experience is mutual, and love enters where it the illusion was it was not. The veils on relationships keep lifting.

Awakening is a process – for this being it started in 2007, but the blueprints for it where there all along. The circumstances leading up to it, and in the beginning required a lot of releasing, a lot of acceptance into the path of the unknown. Meanwhile, all the support shows up. It can be rocky at times, even extremely difficult and painful, but ultimately awakening is the most brilliant gift to consciousness. It’s the kind of thing that spreads for those who are ripe and ripening. The clarity is what reigns, rises, and spreads, breaking up all the dross of thought, conditioning, and aberrant energy patterns. Awakening is final, but it isn’t done. It is like a seal that has opened and the energy from the container is decompressing over time.

Note: When I saw Barbara’s challenge show up in my inbox, I immediately penned the words above; it literally took me only about 2-3 minutes, if that. My own clarity on the prompt – as I experienced it unto myself – was surprising!

******************************* PART III *************************************

Begins Here:

Reflecting on Part II was beautiful. I am glad that I could receive again my relationship to the words on Part II through this exercise, agreeing with all that was written above about the continuous experience, and not feeling like I need to update or change anything.

Beyond ideas, beyond thoughts and notions of awakening is the day-to-day experience of it. There are the delightful surprises that show up along the way.

Below is a poem I have written for Venus Retrograde, which takes place today, October 5.

 

“Bringing in the Calm”

 

How can I feed this moment with what it needs?
,
numerous deep breaths answer…
,
the steady gift of,

deliberate
airway transformation

.

Healing sounds tone
,
a singing voice illuminates:

you are safe, you are peaceful,
you are calm.

your true nature shines free with the complete
view that all is now magic, laced in the fabric
of gentle thoughts, easy movements

fabric woven into a soft, multi-dimensioned
tapestry where you can surround yourself in
the cushioned condition of reflection

,

timelessly recreating a reality within the vision
of peace.

Writing, poetry, and photography ©Ka Malana 2018, shared on Fiestastrellas.com

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DSCN0297

 

ascend, amend, comprehend

Soft,
Soften,
Softening

these words
whispered reach underneath
the skin, gently awakening
into new silky textures
channeling moisture and health,
supporting vitality

through all the channels and tinier channels and even smaller microscopic patterns, structure below structure

her flexibility opens to shine
into an archway, a passage made as airy as a canopy of silk,

gentle drum sounds move through the hairs of her ears,

soften, gentle,
easy, purposeful, guide her up the spiral stairway,

all white,
all open,
moving upward, lifted, free
her feet, ankles thank her,

all the way up to her crown,
her hair releases,

“you are as ancient as the oldest grain of sand, as mysterious as the creatures in the oceanic vents, and as free as all the universes keep expanding… and there is no end to you.”

Ka Malana 2018

Freedom

noting that during times of duress,
the most “me” me steps forward, not
the “person” me, the instinctual me.
The me that’s balanced and clear.

The one who cannot be mistaken.

i’ve kept her away, because
when i am most “me” the people disappear…
it gets silent and lonely.

Or is that inner peace, disguised as an island?

Today i have a new vision for that
space that’s created, when I speak my truth –

Today i don’t worry about being heard,
or being overheard, and misunderstood.

Today i listen so closely to that voice
in my heart, and I move with its movements,
and I sway with its sways,
and I dance with its steps…

if anything is not on its agenda,
you won’t hear from me.
the drummer inside, holds the keys to my passage

it is that drummer inside who is my guide.

Ka Malana ©2018

On the rocks

How can I do it all?

why does it feel so heavy
sometimes?

once a connection is made it
doesn’t leave…, and yet
where is my memory?

I need this moment for me,
for the sake of not over or under preparing for moments that don’t happen.

There’s an emptiness inside –
and I am grateful for it. It shows me
where i can love more.
forced gratitude sometimes,
the fear of complaining,
practicing victimhood, won’t claim me today.

at the moment of celebration,
there’s a lot more unplanned purging…
But I can see the freedom at the open door. I can feel the wind that flows through the openness all throughout, and I’ll just let the opening be there, while
I linger in this healing maze, clinging to the rocks, for

whenever I’m truly ready

38

Love has led me here
she does not tarry,
she does not make haste –
or deliver herself on the back
of intellectual arguments, just for
clarity’s sake.

she guides me with each step;
a lollypop on the road, a unique
Cees candy message from my teacher,
traveled all the way here
to my familiar sidewalk;
also, the drizzle of love from the grey sky
who has eased me from my ways
of fear and trembling;
and let me know, I’m not alone.

Love is my anchor, my presence –
the reflection in the mirror,
the “hello, good morning” in the neighbor’s
voice, the sound of my grandmother, my father,
my mother’s voice, once they’ve discovered,
that I’ve stopped hiding
under the racks at the clothing stores,

and started crying for different reasons…

i’ve stopped running away from beautiful
messages like roses, and hearts… easy things-
effortless nothings of love,
and i’ve begun to play the flute again –
9 years old meets 38 year old in one
body: and played a belated “Happy Birthday” to thyself.

Love has led me here to your doorstep
to your eyes,
for your reading, for your consumption.
When I was little, I stole an eraser,
it was big and it said, “for big mistakes,”
and I’m still having
difficulty forgiving myself for it.

if it were “i” i’d have kept all this
beauty hidden under the dusty, locked trunk of
“being under construction”… under surveillance,
waiting for a “safe” moment to come out and play.

but my little red ball slipped from my ageless hands…

if it were “i”, i wouldn’t have told you
my secrets in this one poem, or opened up my
consequences for your pleasure.

Anything worth doing, begins and ends with Love, even if it looks
like a mistake, it’s innocent.

2018© Ka Malana –

*******************************************************************************
I’m back from retreat, and about to get settled into a new trimester in the cauldron of deep study, practice, and making mistakes. I feel open and vulnerable to the newness of my mind, the emptiness of it. I’m not back to blogging. I might take a longer break from blogging. I sincerely appreciate new followers and new commenters and new visitors to Fiestaestrellas.com. The fact that you found your way here, well it means something. I look forward to catching up with all of you when I can, am able, or happily distracted. For now, I have a focus and love and passion…. to attend to, and I will follow it wherever it takes me.

My jaw hurts

how strange it is to notice it
clenching less often
while still anchoring itself
into itself,
as though it will save me
from all of my fearful thoughts.

or from words ~ useful
communication, where muscles
loosen, and the space that is created,
has options to offer others.

(so glad I’m not an expert).

what would i say if i
said everything that I wanted to say
as beautifully as i wish i could,
or if i simply accepted –

this moment,

exactly as it is?

>>>pain is a reminder of life, and living:
it is a reminder that we are all equally
subjected to

all the feels.

the good, the bad, the ugly ~
why settle for only a bland sky?
why settle for that which catches your eye?

why settle at all…

move through it ~
this is life, and it is living through you, but your
body is not the extent of your consciousness – it is only
a small part.

***
I’m very much looking forward to my retreat with Francis Lucille at the end of the month. Consciousness is having fun with pain here, why not?

Art in the woods, a new light coming

claude-monet-painting-by-the-edge-of-a-wood-1885

Art in the woods

As of yet, I still do not have a favorite style of art. My tastes seem to have changed throughout the decades. But I do find some subject themes repeat in my field of interest such as those by the descriptors: “art in the woods,” “pictures within pictures,” and “landscape and subject blend together.” For example, the image above is a painting by John Singer Sargent of a scene with a painting being composed by Claude Monet. This painting has the appeal of both the woods, and a picture within a picture.

Claude Monet Painting by the Edge of a Wood John Singer Sargent 1885, Impressionism, portrait,  oilcanvas

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the-hammock

Landscape and subject blend together

Everything about the above painting tells me to relax. It does it gently so I don’t have to feel bad about a thing. The subject is a part of the scene, with a touch of texture expressed by the brush to express the differentiation between the subject’s pink dress and the dimensionless ground of this wooded area, where the hammock is suggested to hang from trees out of view. The red of the umbrella stands out – this relaxing woman is well-prepared for any occasion, and she can rest peacefully on her hammock in the confetti-like woods.

The Hammock Giovanni Boldini, c.1872 – c.1874 , Impressionism, genre painting,  oil, panel

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a-birch-grove-1

Art in the Woods

One can imagine seeing apparitions in this piece. It’s a peaceful view of nighttime and the hint of the magic of the forest, with its glowing hues, and with the green and yellow “lights” it is a suggestion of an almost black-light luminosity. This reminds me of many of my most favorite forest scenes.

A Birch Grove Arkhip Kuindzhi , Березовая роща  c.1880  Impressionism, landscape

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I saved my favorites for the last ones. Somehow they represent something new that is on its way for me – these paintings both fill me with intrigue. They are both by John Singer Sargent, who I discovered today, and who by the painting below, inspired me to post today. Since the painting below is not in public domain, I have linked to the video about the painting. Having received stargazer lilies for my birthday this year, and having particular affections for both the rose and carnations… everything about this painting below, I love.

Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose, by John Singer Sargent, around 1885
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the-sphinx
The Sphinx, John Singer Sargent, 1890 – 1891

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Constructive questions

Part of the trouble with the brain drain – from the planet – is the lack of open-ended questions in our world. People attempt to answer questions, which one would think is the purpose of them, but upon closer inspection, it is the question itself which may be the empowering factor. We live in a world of quizzes with correct or incorrect answers. That immediate gratification factor, of being able to determine “wrong or right” about any answer – as on a quiz or a test – is making us all not so smart.

Two blog posts ago, I wrote asking questions about blogging, social media and obligations. Many of us try to “fit in” blogging into our busy lives, while we try to make an income and survive, or while we try to be present with our families, friends, and while for many of us, in the meantime while we narrow down ‘everything’ (say our “being empathic”) so that we can focus on one patient or client at a time, so we can “do the next good thing.”

I’m about to head over to yoga class, remembering the positions I once formed myself into as a child, in order to “better myself” or stretch, or so that my mom wouldn’t be so bothered by my questions; hence, I had something “to do.” Here however, I have a luxury, a luxury that many gray hairs afford me: QUESTIONS, and a little bit of blog magic. I can pose some questions and then go about my day, and with the magic of blogging, meanwhile cogs and wheels start turning in places I couldn’t have even imagined, and gold nuggets drop on the floor falling, potentially, from the sky…

1). How can we have a society where the food that is good to eat is not overly expensive?

2). How can we develop feedback systems that don’t overly tax dopaminergic systems and augment addictions in people?

3). How can we help people who need to “take a break” from things, find that space, and see that “letting go” is exactly what will save us. Perhaps.

I like the number 3 today. Questions ended.

*A note about astrology:
As an astrologer, I have been studying “the stars” and my relationship to the stars, more specifically, since the time I was about 10 years old or younger. I was answering quizzes about psychology before my little brain was even in a “person-like-shape” Back then I was an extrovert. Now, I am an introvert. Some wonderful writers coined the term “extroverting introvert,” which can also be applied. Regardless of labels, what I have discovered throughout my years of observation and reflection, is that, I tend to communicate more during Mercury retrogrades (so far). This particular retrograde is conjoining my natal Sun in Leo. It brings me out for as long as I am able…And my Sagittarius MC is active.

So, what say you?

Shadow Selfie – and on Not giving up!

Another ‘Day of Mindfulness’ event, and the “witness” of never leaving, never returning… is ‘always’ leaving and ‘always’ returning. How many steps have we walked together?

I’ve been keeping record ever since May of 2017 of my steps with myself, but even earlier than that when my disk herniated in 2012 and seeped out triggering my nerve and years of confusing debilitating pain, confused muscles and who knows what else – a month after I moved across country; it changed everything in my life. Then I got married in 2013, and then in 2014 I started grad school part time, doing yoga in class to get through the pain at first. Technically, I have one more year to go of internship and class.

I feel a lot better, but not without many setbacks along the way. Fortunately none of the setbacks were complete and all-encompassing – I found myself digging smaller holes to climb out of each time. I’m very unamazing, but I did write a poetry book, which is something I am proud of.

Since then, I’ve seen people overcome back issues much quicker and be far more determined and dedicated than I was at the time. At the time, I dug my hole – on one level – and on another level, I was leveling-up and being much stronger than I ever have been. There’s so many ways to look at things, I suppose it depends on the mind-set we are in which interpretation gets to hold the most weight for the longest time; therefore re-patterning the brain connections.

Everything felt like it needed to change, and it has. Everything still is changing.

Of all I learned, most of all: I cannot compare myself to others. If I do, it always hurts inexorably. I’ve watched so many people fly by me in the race of life – so many people with good solid abilities be brave and continuous. There are so many people that I admire, that I almost basically admire anyone. Let’s just get up today, and tomorrow, and every day! Let’s just keep going…

When I first started grad school, I thought that my gratitude for my improving situation could carry me through! I thought, after all, I re-trained myself how to walk!  But by now I was in California, and all the people around me seemed just so much more amazing and so much more able. Hey, other states have really cool and talented people too!

Many days along this road, it’s just been, well, hard to love myself. But it wasn’t until about 2010-2011 that I found a way to love myself, anyways. What I learned is that I didn’t find a way to love myself until I had something I had to walk away from. I needed to experience the depths of my despair in order to realize the urgency of my need to self-love. Then it came. Also, my nana passed, and I held her hand as she died (2007). Love came.

But, when I thought I was done – and had cleared the “boards” of my life, had my whole life ahead of me: I was on my way to the next major challenge, years of back outage and struggle. It would be an untrue story to stay that it was all struggle: these were also the brightest, the best, the most love-filled times of my life – even as my social circle mostly waned, and I felt so lonely at times.

I think this is just the way life is: it gives us everything – the good and the bad – and the in-between. This is how we grow and develop, and it is OK. I am always just beginning. This is my reality. The more I learn, the less I know.

What is mindfulness about? Well, it’s not about a full-mind (we all know that!), nor it is about all the noise in our heads as we practice our steps in walking meditation. It’s not about walking through just one or two “dark-sides,” or doing some shadow work in a couple of workshops.  It’s about being willing to continue…despite all that junk that’s going on. It’s about constantly signing up and constantly narrowing down, and honing what’s important and valuable to oneself in this precious, valuable life.

That’s what it is about.

You see that speed bump up there? That’s part of what makes the ride “doable.” It kind of looks like a DNA strand, and the shadow – well, I think I prefer shadow selfies. That’s how I see myself, as I blur on the landscape…skidding off bumps, sometimes I see them – sometimes I don’t!

While at the day of my mindfulness, I caught a glimpse of one of the young monk’s books and it said, “be. silly.” on the cover. Isn’t that right? Do we do all this, just to ‘let go’ ?  Well, yes, why yes… we do.

You see that picture up there of my hand? Well, sometimes I have to just ‘hand it to myself,’ if i can except myself, while not measuring up to the expectations of others, or the abilities of others, I can keep going, and keeping going… is exactly what I am doing.

Now my hand is an incredible claw that will dig me up out of my hole with the silliness of the moment. I can still cry and be serious on a dime – whatever life requires of me.

You see that buddha up there? Broken in 3? It’s about being both broken and not-broken.

It’s about living in the middle. I don’t ever see myself as taking on the role of the expert, or knowing one, but one day – I hope people learn something from me that gives them value, value they make for themselves. One day I hope to be that strength for others that I had and have to continuously keep becoming for myself. A lot of days I am that person, and I get all the pleasure of making a difference in the lives of others, but most days – I still feel like I’m not making enough of a difference, or healthy enough to ‘show up more,’ but I have to be patient… and find the skip in my step, no matter what. No matter what is going on inside of me or out there in politics and war. I have to find the anchor in my claw-shadow-hand. It will pull me up, unexpectedly from any disaster I find myself in! It’s the superpower I’ve been cultivating… it’s entirely unamazing – but it’s worth the whole shadow!

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A little bit about astrology: This upcoming eclipse on August 11, 2018 will be the last in the N.Node in Leo series. It’s conjoining my N.Node in Leo, within a 2 degree orb, and conjoining my Leo Sun. Remembering back 18 or so years ago to the last N.Node in Leo transit, well, it wasn’t easy. I was single then, even with that 7th house Sun. In fact, I had spent a lot of time alone in my life, self-reliant (S.Node in Aquarius, 1st house). But, there’s something great and new around the corner. I can just “feel” it. It’s free and it’s fun, and I will never stop striving for it. The bliss of the N.Node Leo “fun” is how we learn to dance while we cultivate ‘courage’ and ‘strength,’ overcoming even the most realistic of fears. This is what Leo is about, not the glitz and glamor that everyone confuses Leo with, but who knows…

Yes, recently I caught a glimpse of a man in a parking lot who it looked like his wife and daughter where heaping gold glitter onto him. What was he doing? Preparing for a music video? I have no idea. But, he glowed. He laughed. Maybe he was preparing for something big…. or maybe, he was just having fun. The answers are inside. All the answers are inside. Is there really any difference to ‘just having fun’ and ‘making it big?” You tell me. Life is already quite a modest affair… or is it, really, more like a dandelion bursting through the concrete: a regular miracle of strength and life force!  May you all be ready to live your best dreams…or at least have fun getting ready…as we smile through the tears.