Category Archives: Letting go

NJ to Oregon travelogue, day 4

Tues, Oct. 4:

Started the day with 1700 miles to go and ended with 1200 to go. Had a call with Phil,  our mover, to update him on progress. Basically if we cannot be there by Friday morning he initially said he wouldn’t be able to deliver our stuff until Tues or Weds. Sigh. But then he called back and said he might be able to do Sat.

We had a big line of storms we would have to go through. They had the potential of producing strong winds and hail, but we crossed it to the other side without incident.

We had a great but short visit with Erin, Art, Ryan, Sam and Gracie. It was interesting learning how they were doing and what they were up to for the Fall. Erin and I talked about the challenge of finding Stuff to write about.

We then proceeded to Irv and Janet’s place in Omaha. Because we were running late, Janet was already at work and we didn’t get to see her, but had a really nice visit with Irv.  

It rained a few times but got through the line of storms pretty fast.

Then we assessed the miles between us and Ft. Collins, where we were going to stop for the night. No go. So then we chose Cheyenne, WY. By 4 pm it was clear that we would be driving until 10 or 11 pm if we kept that course. So we ended up reserving a room in Sidney, NE, about 3/4 of the way between Omaha and Cheyenne.  Folks, this is a long drive when you have a dog and cat in tow.

Got into Sidney, the home of Cabela’s, around 9 pm, but it was actually 8 because we had crossed a time zone. 

Days Inn is fine, but the surrounding parking lot is a bit sketchy and there was nowhere to walk Sophy. 

Went to Wal-Mart and ended up at Applebee’s around 9:30.

NJ to Oregon travelogue, day 3

Monday, Oct. 3: We have 1,966 miles to go. Will reach halfway point tomorrow. The journey has included seven states – New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa. 

Tomorrow we will go into Nebraska, weather permitting, and see Irvin and Janet and Erin and Art.

We drove a long time on this day and stopped, exhausted, at 7:30 pm. By the time we checked in and had thw pets cared for, it was 8:30 and we were able to go for dinner. 

We stayed at a Microtel, which was clean and comfortable.  We ate at the Beer house Restaurant. I had a decent grilled chicken with avocado and Jim had the Beerhouse sliders. 

To my great relief, Silver used his litter box right after we got him settled on the hotel room. Overnight, he continued to use it :-).

So I feel less guilty about having him in the carrier for ten hours. And I have been walking him too. 

Sophy is actually doing better than she did at home, with regular walks and food. No accidents so far.

Jim had a rough evening because we pushed too hard to get there. Basically, moving is hard because we don’t have any of the usual comforts or enough down time. You’d think that sitting in a car while your partner drives gives you lots of down time, but it’s not focused time because of all the things we have to look after.

NJ to Oregon travelogue, day 2

Sunday morning, Oct. 2: Left at 10 am. Silver was good all night (slept on the bed) and Sophy slept well. So did we, despite having a smoke smell in the room. Silver didn’t have a BM so I walked him on his kitty harness when we stop. Although he walked well and was super cute, he didn’t do anything. I guess he can hold it for a while longer. I offered him water in his kennel and gave Sophy some, too.

Went through lots of tunnels:

Blue Mountain

Kittatiny Mountain

Tuscarora Mountain

Allegheny Mountain

The views are beautiful but there is a low fog on everything. Bucolic. Pastoral. Like a Charles Wysocki puzzle.

Thinking in a couple of directions today – gratitude for the wonderful send-off by friends and family members, and concern about remaining logistics.

Before we left, we were able to visit some of our favorite places and see some of our favorite people again. One of our favorite places is the Raptor Trust, a sanctuary for injured and sick birds like falcons, hawks, owls, eagles, and ravens. The Raptor Trust is next to The Great Swamp, between Berkeley Heights and Morristown. I spend a lot of time there or driving through it, just enjoying how serene and beautiful it was.

I got to go out with several of my favorite work friends and they treated me so kindly. Their good wishes have buoyed me as we go through this tough journey.

I also spent time with dear friends that I knew from outside of work. I am so glad to have been able to visit with Don and Claire Kissil, just to name a couple.

As we get through more of these marathon days, my concerns are, for the most part, settling down. The dog is doing fine and the cat is not complaining at all.

NJ to Oregon travelogue, day 1

Jim holding the bag

Jim holds a bag of our stuff so I can put on my seatbelt in our overloaded Corolla before heading to his mom Marilyn’s house. We would need to further downsize to begin our journey to Oregon.

Saturday, Oct. 1:

Got a late start around noon because we needed to cash the security deposit check and trim down what we are bringing with us. Heartfelt hugs with Marilyn and Jessica, who is staying a couple weeks and flying to Portland from DC.

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Our feast at Troegs. I loved the beet-marinated deviled eggs and the margarita flatbread. He had the charcouterie and cheese plates, and spiced roasted almonds.

Silver was quiet and well behaved and used his litter box like a good boy. The cat pan liners are a win! So easy to clean up. He did not try to escape even once, and did not disturb Sophy. He seems to really enjoy staying at Marilyn’s home.

Sophy was also great. Happy to report no accidents.

We stopped in Bethlehem and visited Marge, Nick, Chris, Paul and Cherie. Nick said a prayer to wish us well, a gesture i found very touching.

It will be his birthday tomorrow and Marge’s on Oct. 3. I hope they have very happy birthdays.

We stopped at Cabela’s to get Jim a rain coat. It rained on us as we left the store.

Didn’t make much progress today but we stopped for the night at the Econolodge in Harrisburg then drove down to Troegs Brewery for dinner. We had Sophy in the car and Silver remained at the motel. All was well when we returned.

My idea of surrender, and why I need it

I think about surrender a lot, because I am over forty and have learned how to control quite a bit of my life.

Something happens when a person reaches that age group. As a twenty-something I would often remark on how bitchy forty year old women were. They just seemed angry and bitter about everything. Well, it’s amazing how the life journey can give you some perspective on that.

To my twenty-something friends, you aren’t wrong about that observation! I’ll tell on myself a bit there. :-). Here’s why that bitterness tends to rear its ugly head at that time in a woman’s life (men too, I imagine). Since I can only speak for myself (others are undoubtedly wiser than me), I will cast this information in light of my own experience.

1. I’ve been working really hard in my career without sufficient regard to my other life needs…when I really need to work smarter.
2. I think I can keep the house clean all the time, even with four teenagers and animals and a full time job.
3. I fail to fully consider how I spend my commute to and from work.
4. I overlook the mathematics of the value of my time and give away too many hour of work to my employer.
5. I have been responsible for everything so long that I have forgotten how to be irresponsible – how to delight that inner child.
6. I stay too wrapped up in what didn’t go right yesterday and what I’m worried about for tomorrow to realize that in this little moment called NOW, there is a sunbeam and the coffee is awesome and the og is less than five feet away.

From my atheist / agnostic upbringing as a child, my concept of surrender is more practical than holy, although it certainly works to have a holy idea of surrender to God.

Surrender = acceptance of a bigger idea or plan than I cannot know all of at any one moment.

It also involves letting go of the idea that I can control what happens to me, and opening myself to serendipity that can move me forward spiritually. Even writing this line, I feel resistance within myself. Sometimes someone I care about makes a suggestion for something fun to do. If it wasn’t already in my plan for the weekend, maybe I will say no to it because I might see it as a distraction or predict it is not going to give me the contentment I am after.

But I also must acknowledge the truth that when I spend my weekend in exactly the ways I intended, the probability of feeling dissatisfaction by the end of the weekend is about the same. So what’s really going on here?

Lots of stuff, most of which I call ’emotional static’ that’s a result of not centering down enough. Emotional static is caused when there is a lack of discipline in my mind. I might be wrapped up in ‘shoulds’ about others in my life (i.e., things I cannot control) – cleaning up meal dishes without being asked, not leaving socks under the couch, not sticking toast with peanut butter behind the couch, not eating all of the cereal in one sitting.

It makes me tired just thinking about it! And just so you know, I still haven’t learned what the perfect balance is to living with teenagers, and I am still exhausted when I spend more time at home, and I am still relieved to send my days in a more predictable office environment.

Emotional static also comes from sensing others’ moods without being consciously aware of them, being mad at myself for lack of action or too much action, and nervousness over something that still needs to be done (like bills or taxes).

I can describe the problem of not surrendering in great detail – what I need to do next is describe the process of surrendering in great detail. I see it as a series of many decisions throughout the day to let go of things.

Sometimes it’s impossible to let go of a particular moment, but maybe it’s better then to say, well, that’s one moment, let’s try for the next. Maybe some days are so bad that I am doing great if I can just snatch one innocent, happy, expectation-free moment in the entire day.

If any of you also have this challenge (and fighting for survival in New Jersey seems to make this more prevalent), I suggest a few starter activities that won’t require too much of your time and energy (and thus will be harder to blow off).

While taking one of these little moments, remember to stop your thoughts and take a few deep, slow breaths, focusing on one pleasant thing about it at a time – the simpler the better. On returning to the routine, practice a little emotional discipline and avoid letting negative thoughts slam back into your mind – refocus on the pleasure of that moment.

Here’s the thing I noticed about these practices – they will not appear to be worthwhile when you first think about doing them. You will slowly get more joy from them as you continue practicing with the intention of contentment.

First thing in the morning:
While waiting on the dog to do her business or the child to eat, find a sunbeam if you can, listen to birds singing, or take a sip of something delicious like coffee or juice.

On your way to the office:
If you drive, play songs that make you happy and sing with them. It’s hard to frown while doing so. Or listen to stories to take your mind elsewhere.
If you take public transportation, sit someplace that’s a little more pleasant if you can. I walk all the way down the train to the quiet car on the end and sit on the east-facing side so the sun shines on me.
Also when on trains or buses, watch the people. if they don’t make you smile, go sit or stand somewhere more entertaining. It’s okay to have fun and notice other human beings in a crowded place.
If it’s cold, wear your softest, warmest, happiest scarf and hat even if they look funny. Especially if they look funny because others will smile at you.
If you walk, play tunes on your headphones that make you happy.

You get the idea – there is one of these moments in every part of your day – give it a try for a week and see if it helps!

What would a day without expectations be?

Okay, maybe that concept is a little too abstract even for the most “zen” among us, but let’s try this:

What if we picked a day and, when asked for our preference/order/decision on something that day, instead described the outcome we’d prefer in more general terms?

We could call it the Flexible Wish Day. Or maybe Surprise Me Day. What would you call it?

Here’s how such a day might play out:

I’d wake up in the morning and do the stuff everybody needs to do to get ready for work. Instead of selecting the exact shampoo I want, I’d grab whatever’s closest. Instead of worrying about my outfit, I’d close my eyes and grab a shirt from my wardrobe, then select stuff to wear with it that matches.

Walking the dog, I’d let her go where she wants, wherever that might lead us.

At work, instead of listing all my “to do” items and ranking them by urgency/priority, I’d jot down 2 or 3 things that are foremost in my mind and then think, how do I want my morning to feel? If creative, I’d work on the thing that helps me feel that way. If social, I’d work on an item that required collaboration. If detailed, I’d work on spreadsheets and stats.

Instead of planning ahead and packing a lunch, I’d go to the grocery/deli and pick whatever attracts my eye first, without further deliberation over price or nutrition. I’d eat it with care and enjoy any surprise it delivered.

For my afternoon, instead of being pulled from task to task by urgent emails, phone calls and in-person interruptions, I would stop answering the phone and email, put on my headphones, and think, how do I want my afternoon to feel? Then I’d pick one of my priorities and work on that.

On the way home, I’d put on my iPod and hit Shuffle, even though I have 20 carefully selected podcasts saved which are exactly long enough for my drive home. Whatever played, that would be groovy. At stop lights, instead of thinking how I can get in front of the slow guy, I would look around at the faces of the other drivers and see if anyone is doing anything interesting, or better yet, if anyone would like to smile back at me.

At home, when one of my peeps asks me what I want for dinner, I’d smile and say, surprise me! If that throws them, I’d breeze into the kitchen and randomly put my hand on a box in the pantry or an item in the fridge, saying, why don’t we do something with that? Or, if the mood suits, I would say, I don’t care what I eat but I would like something spicy. 🙂

Or maybe we decide to go to a restaurant, only this time I am driving and my family does not yet suspect I am having a Flexible Wishes Day – great fun! I drive randomly until some restaurant catches my eye. I apply no criteria whatsoever to making the choice. We go in, and the waiter asks what I would like. I ask what he would like to bring me. He tells me the specials. I say, I want something warm and crunchy. And wait. Whatever comes will be a surprise! Yes!

Afterwards, the kids want to play a game. I say okay, and they ask which game. I say, surprise me! And they do.

On expectations and blessings

This morning while sitting in silence with the Quakers, I began to explore the extent and impact of expectations in my life. What are the kinds of events/things/people/relationships we expect in our life? How do they steer our daily existence and our opportunities? Do they give us hope or do they limit our happiness?

We are a goal-oriented society; we all must to some extent have an idea of what we want, or we likely won’t get it. At least this is true for material things like jobs, cars, houses, or fitness. But is this the right frame of mind for experiences like relationships, people, and opportunities?

It seemed to me that the more detailed and complex my vision for my life was, the less space there would be for surprises (otherwise known as blessings) to occur. I explored that for a long time, thinking of each expectation, goal, or plan I had for my present life.

To me, blessings are a stealthy thing. They sneak up on you and wait for you to notice them. They probably won’t impact your life for the better unless you see them and let them in. And if you’re focused on the script for how your life is to play out, maybe you won’t see them at all. I visualized myself at the center, sitting cross-legged on a folded towel on a packed dirt surface. Blessings and love shone toward me from all sides, but between me and them was a round brick wall tightly encircling me. Each brick was actually an expectation of how my life should proceed, as in:

I will work for a marketing department.

My house should be clean.

There should be plenty of food in the fridge which everyone in the family can eat.

I should have friends.

My dog should behave herself.

My car should always work.

My man should treat me well at all times.

I should be a healthier weight.

My hair should not be gray.

Each of the kids should have a nice birthday with a cake I bake myself.

My cat should not puke on the floor or meow too loud.

The kids should always help clean the house.

New Jersey should be nice to me.

I should get over my mom’s death.

And so on – try this exercise yourself and you will begin to see how many you have too! I was amazed. It became clear to me that every expectation I had could obscure a blessing waiting to come to my life. And some of those blessings might actually help me with many of my goals and dreams, but what they required was serenity and trust.

I’m a type A from way back, so this is not an easy task for me. In fact, I immediately began to think of new goals that would help me get more blessings into my life. Aha. More bricks in the wall, not fewer. Okay, breathe, Sylvie.

Lacking in answers, I did a little positive visualization. I imagined myself punching out those bricks one at a time, after visualizing the expectation first. I give up my attachment to a constantly clean house. Kaboom. A little ray of sunshine sneaks in and bathes my shoulder with warmth. Another one – I give up my expectation that my man provide me with attention at every opportunity. Crunch. A little bird flies in through the opening and sings a pretty song to me.

I visualized punching out every brick and walking out into the world to be buffeted by chance and opportunity. I realigned my view of the world – now I was a leaf in a stream, spinning and swirling downstream past rocks and other obstacles, sometimes floating with other leaves and sometimes rushing past. Now it’s a journey and you take the impermanence of it along with the joys. I read that the Buddhists say change is the only constant. Also: If you can accept that inevitability, you can begin to be content.

So have I completely transformed my existence from this exercise? Heck no. That would be too easy. But this gives me some more information and some more questions to work on.

January progress report on my life

I feel as though I am waking from a long and troubled winter’s sleep. Christmas was a hard time for me though I do feel I injected some hope into the season which will help me have a better holiday next year.

I was not suicidal and I don’t need antidepressants, but just going through a catharsis about Mom being gone from my life. Her birthday was Dec. 25 and she died 3 days after her birthday in 2006. Christmas is just not the same for me. Plus the shallowness of the holiday really wears on me – it has no real meaning anymore. Just an occasion for giving people stuff they don’t need anyway. We all have too much stuff and it pulls our focus away from more worthy endeavors.

I had a sore back around the same time and decided to go to a chiropractor /  sports doctor. I am feeling so much better and now doing exercises to avoid reinjury.

I restarted my yoga practice last week with Yoga for Restoration class. And just before Christmas I began visiting a nearby Quaker meeting, though I am not a Quaker (yet). I love their silent worship and how anyone can speak out of the silence. There is no pastor and the ugly issue of money hardly ever gets mentioned – they value simplicity as do I. I am meeting some kind souls there including one amusing older man who has invited me to a writer’s group at his house in Morristown.

There is a drum circle that meets once a month at the Quaker meeting house – not affiliated, just uses the space. But I intend to check that out as well. I am working to bring more positive energy and positive people into my life. And Jim and his family are a wonderful benefit for that.

I do have a new job as of Sept 09 and I am working to manage job stress better. It’s a pretty hectic scene sometimes. Sometimes I feel that I am actually an editor in a marketing manager’s clothing, LOL. I’d love to also have the chance to do more editing, esp. something related to my new life journey like health, spirituality, kindness, whatever.

And in the back of my mind is the comforting idea that I have with a friend from SEG – her name is Spring. We want to write and record meditations for podcasts. We are working on ideas and will be corresponding with each other about this as it develops. I hope to jump in and try one sometime in the first quarter.

I miss my friends and family who are scattered across the country – I am grateful to still be in touch with Dad, Lisa, Aline, Diane, Valerie and Julie and many others. I often get distracted and time slips by before I reach out again, but I always feel better when I do reconnect. I think about them all with gratitude and love.

Moved to New Jersey

Here is an update on my new intention to open my heart and learn to live life fully and with gratitude for the dear people in it. Having seized the day (Nov. 1, to be exact), Jim and I drive the moving van, with Subaru in tow and animals loaded, across eight states and more than 1300 miles in 2 days to arrive in New Providence, NJ in the wee hours of Nov. 3.

I had decided to quit my job and say goodbye to my dear friends to move to New Jersey, where I had seen great jobs advertised (for my field of Web Content/Online Editor) and where I had several new friends whom I met on Second Life. I also was volunteering for a discussion group in Second Life about meditation, and they were based in Princeton, NJ, and they had flown me up twice to work with the group on projects. All signs pointed to this area, as if I was sliding down a funnel and would inevitably end up going down the center hole into a bottle.

I am staying with roommates Jennifer and Rel in North Brunswick because Jim’s landlord doesn’t allow pets, but we are looking for a rental house in New Providence and expect to be moving in together in December. He has four kids (2 of which live with him all the time) and they all like me and I like them. I’m glad I am here and I am looking for a job. I’m meeting with a recruiter about doing some contract/consulting work in the Web Content area.

Jim and I both have talked about move to Portland someday. But for now I will enjoy seeing NJ and hanging out with my friends in the area. The NYC area is a 1-hour train ride away! Fun fun!

Jim took me to the New Jersey shore today (Island Beach State Park) and it was wonderful. My dog Sophy was so excited. She did the puppy bark thing for about an hour. After returning home, she crashed hard and has been sleeping it off.

I’ve changed almost everything about my life and I am excited about my future, which is great because it’s been a hard couple of years with Mom’s illness and then Randy’s dad’s illness. I could use some smooth sailing for a bit! Not that it’s going to necessarily happen starting this instant (LOL) but maybe gradually, bit by bit.

Here is a wonderful song by Blues Traveler, called “Fledgling” about a young bird who is being counseled to spread his wings and simply fall. That’s me.

People I am grateful for:

  • Jim, who flew to Tulsa to help me drive a grueling 1300 miles to get me safely to New Jersey, and who treated me like a valued and loved person the whole time.
  • Jennifer and Rel, who trusted me sight unseen and took me in as a roommate, and who helped me lug my stuff into the apartment.
  • Sophy and Meaghan, who as pets put up with many changes in their little environments and routines with good humor and flexible spirits, never losing their basic sweet natures.
  • DeAnna, for her hours of work helping me move boxes into the storage unit.
  • Jessie, for her kind acceptance and gentle spirit.
  • Laura, for her sweetness to Sophy who needed a friend.
  • Jamie, for being adorable.
  • Lynn, for reaching out to me and taking me to a local dog park (my first ever!) by way of welcoming me to New Jersey.
  • Steven, for checking on me every step of the way and helping me feel better about the changes.
  • Valerie, for being a fun and sincere friend who shows her love without reservation.
  • Julie, for sharing her troubles and hopes as I have shared mine, and walking with me.
  • Ceci and Will, for being great friends during the trying times (Ceci: wine-tasting Thursdays and Will: concerts that make me young again) and making me sincerely miss I could “fold the world” and easily give them hugs.
  • Sarah, for writing an amazing going away card and making me proud of my time as Web Content Manager at SEG.
  • So many other people who added to my joy and eased my burdens along the way.

An update on Sylectra’s life

I just returned from a wonderful experience at the Gathering of Circles, a camping and fellowship event held every year in Cloudcroft, New Mexico. The give away ceremony at the Gathering of CirclesMy mom attended it for years and she was well known by everyone I visited with there. I also got to meet Carol WhiteWater Dawn, a medicine woman, mystic, and all around wise and wonderful lady. Mom had said many many wonderful things about her but they didn’t hold a candle to her personal presence. She looked calmly and directly into my spirit when Dave took me to meet her; she was totally focused on what I said (which wasn’t a lot because I was hoping to listen more than talk). I looked at her Web site and I was very interested in the fact that she quotes from so many spiritual teachings of different kinds. Obviously she is a versatile and intelligent thinker.

I’m still volunteering (helping with meetings and the wiki) with a discussion group in the 3D virtual world Second Life called Play as Being. It talks about exploring the nature of reality and perception using various multidisciplinary practices like meditation, prayer, etc. It brings together the most wonderful and diverse people to discuss things in a very open minded way.

In fact, my help and involvement with the Play as Being group may grow and my life is being enriched as a result of it. I am passionate about Second Life because I think the Internet is going to become a 3D environment before too long – maybe as soon as five years. The leader of the PaB group works at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ, and I am flying out to meet him and some of the other volunteers this week to have a day of discussions on the group’s possible transformation into something bigger. I am so excited!

In addition, I invested in myself by booking travel and attendance at the Second Life Community Convention in Tampa the first week of September. I will meet many of the people I have been privileged to know in-world. I hope to learn a lot about education and business in Second Life. I am also in touch with another group, Metanomics, that runs discussions in Second Life about the economics of running a business based in a 3D virtual world. One member of this group, Beyers Sellers, is going to present during the educational session.

In my SEG job, I am working with the different departments (we call them ‘business owners’) to get changes made to their pages. The part of the site where we have total control is the News page. We also do an e-mail newsletter called the SEG Extra and help others edit and send out their newsletters too. We’re getting ready to change to a more versatile e-mail vendor and install some social networking tools on our site. Workflows are being built so that staff members can help enter new content and changes to content; the workflows help the review process happen seamlessly and efficiently.

So you could say I practically live online and you’d be right. But I did so enjoy the recent chance to be again in my favorite forest (Cloudcroft) with the lovely breezes and the rain and the nice firm earth. The people at GoC were so welcoming and kind, I felt right at home. I worried about being able to measure up to my mother’s legacy but decided it was impossible even to try. Luckily everyone seems to accept me on different terms than those they knew with Lou Dale. My first name means girl of the forest, by the way, which is ironic since I grew up in the deserts of El Paso, Texas.

One of the great things about the Gathering of Circles is their respectful use of rituals and ceremonies with Native American elements. These include sweat lodges, dances, drum circles, a womens’ bundle ceremony, feasts, and the give away ceremony. The give away ceremony allows participants to give away something that once was important to them and now they are ready to let go of. Many symbolic and emotional objects are given away in this manner. The items are placed in plain wrappers like paper bags, and laid on a blanket in the center of the circle of participants. There was a fire going near the blanket at this one. One by one, participants went to the center, talked about their Gathering of Circles experience thus far (optional), and selected an item. The person who gave the item came up and explained what it meant and why they let it go. There are a lot of really personal and wonderful sentiments shared during this ceremony and talk is formally controlled by the passing of a significant object indicating whose turn it is to talk, such as a walking stick in this case.

I talked about how Mom’s journey into the next world worked a peculiar kind of magic with me. I resolved early in 2005 to really be there when I was with Mom, and not to miss a moment of the experience, no matter how painful it was to witness such a beautiful lady suffering. I flew back and forth often to her home throughout 2005 and 2006 as we went through various stages of the process. We knew it was probably over in October 2006 but she was so brave about the whole thing. She did acts of service for others and was a warm and comforting presence at a time of great uncertainly for her. I did what I could to be her emotional support, although to tell you the truth, it was probably the other way around more of the time. When she died, we knew that she had chosen the time that was optimal for her. She gave a speech at her Christmas feast (on her birthday) and then quietly passed away in the morning two days later, after I had flown back to Tulsa. I dreamed of her several times, knowing in the dream that she was on the other side.

My husband’s father was sick with COPD and cancer in 2006 and died in Oct. 2007. He also was brave and unselfish about his journey, and I have dreamed of him, too.

Anyway, I sort of took a year off from feeling anything from about April 2007 through March 2008. Then I woke up. I suddenly realized the lesson from Mom – it’s time to LIVE and make those dreams happen NOW, not when it’s too late. I have so many things I still want to do before I die. I need to get started right this instant. And I have. I dove into making connections – personal and fulfilling friendships with others, including on Second Life. I started volunteering with Play as Being, and learning all I could about furthering the Web 2.0 stuff for my company’s web site and for other web sites. I realized I had put off plans to travel more and see the people I loved, because my husband had quit work to help care for his dad and start a business. I knew that my journey would take me out of Tulsa and to parts unknown, and that it was going to be an adventure but I would need my income to be more in the service of that. I want to go to India in less than 5 years, etc. We decided to split up amicably and are in the process of separating accounts, paying off debts, etc.

Though I have some sadness and certainly some loneliness, my life is taking off and I love the mystery of it all. I am already living part of my dream – traveling and getting to see people I care about more often, and nurturing my career path with attendance at conventions and seminars that interest me.