Playing

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing!” – George Bernard Shaw

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RIP Robin Williams. Heaven’s gained a wonderful playmate.

I Love You!

I love you!

It’s become clear to me that these three words were meant to be spoken regularly to those you care for, rather than being saved for special occasions, like the “good” china. Love may be as precious as shimmering cut crystal, but it shouldn’t be hidden out-of-site or protected from clumsy hands. Real love should be given with abandon and the trust that the receiver will hold it dear. And if not? Love is never squandered. If it’s met with resistance or taken advantage of, be glad that you’ve had the courage to express your heart’s greatest joy. And have faith! For there will be many times when your love will be received with gratitude. Gratitude that matches your own, every time you have the opportunity to say, “I love you!” For that is the true purpose of love. Love was made to be given away, released into the space between you and another and into the infinite space of our magnificent universe. Indeed, love makes the world go ’round! And, just in case you care, like all good things, love will be returned to you. 

Dedicated, with love always, to Shari Lynn Carney.

Have We Met?

Is it possible to say “Thank You!” and “You’re Welcome!” with just one sentence? Is it plausible for someone to give and receive in the same moment? Is it realistic to say you know someone, if you haven’t ever met? These questions and their answers (Yes! Yes! Yes!) prompted me to ponder being a reader, a writer and, most recently, a blogger.

If I had to squeeze all of my feelings about blogging into just one word, it would be gratitude. I am deeply grateful to “meet” you here in the WordPress community. Not just to “meet you,” as in “Hello, my name is Laura,” but to meet you during the invisible action that is communication in it’s purest form. It’s when I meet someone heart-to-heart, soul-to-soul in the wonderful, safe place trust has built, where I feel free to share the deepest parts of myself, knowing I’ll be received with kindness, free from judgement.

In these precious moments, I often discover that not only are my thoughts and experiences understood, but they are shared. To feel understood is one of the most precious gifts I ever receive; maybe my gratitude springs from our shared need to feel we “belong.” Whatever the reason, nothing comforts and inspires me more than knowing I’m not alone. It gives me the courage to move forward every day, no matter what challenge I may be facing. It fuels my intention to be of service to others, no matter how small or grand the gesture. It makes me love.

This life is filled with give and take, ups and downs, challenge and triumph. I have memories of carefree, childhood discoveries, tales of travel and adventures from my “glory days” and those joyous, life-changing events, like the birth of my beloved daughter. I’ve enjoyed the many simple pleasures we’re all blessed with from one year to the next. I also remember days when loss and grief seemed insurmountable, when depression stole my will and spirit and my recent years of illness, when I wondered if I’d ever be my “old self” again. Then came a cancer diagnosis and the frightening thought that I wouldn’t live another year. Luckily for me, that fear was short-lived; my cancer was caught in Stage One and I responded beautifully to my treatment protocol.

When faced with my own extinction, it wasn’t long before my priorities became crystal clear. I had plenty of time to reflect on my life story and to decide how I want to spend the next chapters. Plotting my intentions was quite simple; I said to myself, “I’ve always wanted to ____ ” and filled in the blank, over and over. I realized I wanted to write “in public” and decided a blog was the perfect place to do it. So, you are now part of my new chapter, where I share my stories and listen to yours as my heart overflows with gratitude. So, Thank you…You’re Welcome…It’s wonderful to meet you!

Dedicated to Anna Quindlen
For Living Out Loud and for helping me realize I have something to say.