Growing Up in One Afternoon

February 26, 2021

Sometimes you have to grow up in one afternoon.  Maybe in an hour. 5 minutes, even.  I wonder why we are not given longer. Why does it have to be almost instant.  On the spot. Nailing us to the wall.  What am I talking about?  Conversations, interactions, experiences that were unexpected and gruesome.  Someone saying something to you that hurt like crazy.  Something happening at a family gathering you didn’t expect.  You missed the mark at a talk you had to give. You failed an exam.  You lost money. A friend getting mad at you for no reason.  And the air is taken out of your lungs. You skip heartbeats.  Your thoughts are either stopping to a halt or come crashing down. It feels like an expander in your stomach.  A bulldozer over your lungs.  A needle on your heart.  And yes, you can have growing up moments in every decade of your life.  I had one this week. It was hard.  They always are. Aren’t they? For this particular moment the bulldozer was especially felt.  While it’s happening you can’t make a sound.  And you can’t let anyone know about the needle in the heart.  The expander in the stomach. You carry on looking normal.  Until you can leave the room, the call, the conversation.  And go and figure out what just happened. These are the kind of growing up moments I mean.  I know you know them. Had them. Survived them.  I am here as your witness.  And thank you for being mine.  These growth spurts will continue to happen until the end.  It’s what makes us human.  Those who don’t feel the expanders in their stomachs I don’t trust so much.  And why you and I are such good friends.  We have the same kind of needlework in our hearts.  Don’t we?   With many nails on my walls, Christina

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Mother Nature’s Icy Castles

February 19, 2021

When Mother Nature knocks on your door, you get down on your knees and pray.  You pray for your family, your self, your neighbors, the people around you. You lose all safety, in an instant.  You lose the ground you have been on.  The physical world around you becomes a threat, an enemy and you pray for Mother Nature to stop the storms, the ice, the cold and to cradle you like she did before.  Before when it was warm, and you had food.  And the sun was speaking to you.  I live in Austin, Texas and in the last few days we were thrown into an eerie and cold world where snow looked like glue, and the air stopped breathing around us.  We were met with an unwavering icy stillness.  It was like we were on our own, away from everyone.  Almost as if planet earth held us upside down for a week, while everyone was watching to see if we could hang on. We hung on.  In the midst of undrivable roads, contaminated water, freezing indoor temperatures we saw people helping their neighbors.  Furniture shops opening their doors, drivers with pick up trucks helping those stuck on the icy roads.  As I am writing this letter to you, the temperature just started to rise and by the time you get this, the eerie, glue-like ice will be melting. Mother Nature will be moving on from us, leaving us with almost nothing and bruised knees from all the praying.  Wherever you are today, whether you live in Texas with me, or in a small town in Ireland. Down under in Australia. Know that no matter how scary this week has been, it will end.  Nothing lasts forever.  Not even Mother Nature’s Icy castles. (Click to tweet!) Not even sticky ice.    With warm blankets, Christina  

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Am I Living The Right Life?

February 12, 2021

What would it take to live the life of your choosing.  Not of your dreams, even.  But of your choice.  And then, when you dare make a different choice, do you wonder if you made the right one? What if the new choice is a choice you can’t take back.  Something you can’t un-choose.   I ask myself, am I living the right life? Did I make the right choices for myself.  For who I am.  For the things I like and dislike.  Lately I started observing my anxiety, intimately.  Witnessing the moments I feel dread.  I found myself dreading things that were easy, basic.  Things that should not even be of any significance, like paying a bill, opening a bank account. I found my anxiety in the most unexpected places.  Hiding, waiting for me to show up for the task.  That is when I asked the questions.  What if my life choices were different, would I be feeling less anxious?  Would it be the same?  And if I could choose differently, what would I choose?  Oh God, you made it this way, didn’t you?  A puzzle. A maze.  You made the easiest question, have the hardest answer.  The answer to the question, what do I want is always the most difficult to answer.  Not because we don’t know what we want, but because the brain has claimed these choices, labeling them as too risky.  Too messy. But is it too messy to live the life of your choosing? (Click to tweet!) Would anxiety find you there too?  While you are brushing your teeth, walking to work, falling asleep.  Or would it not even find you there.  Just maybe, anxiety would lose her way to the life of your choosing.  Thinking she would find you at the same place she always has. At the old life.  You see, all these years she took your presence for granted.  She thought you would never leave.  I am thinking maybe, we could sneak out of this life for a few moments.  Sneaking out while choosing something different for our day.  Something that belongs to the right life.  Whatever that may be.  What will you choose?  With new choices, Christina   P.S. This week’s Dear Life Podcast Interview is with someone who found her way to a new life after the loss of her infant daughter. Listen HERE

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Growing Older

February 5, 2021

Today is Eric’s 50th birthday.  My second husband’s birthday.  This morning I woke up grateful for him being alive.  Breathing. Moving. Being here to celebrate his 50th year.  For those who don’t know my story, my first husband died when he was 35.  Eric’s first wife also died at 35.  For us, getting to 50 is such a blessing.  We celebrate aging.  We scream it from the rooftops.  I am going to keep my letter short today, as I want to go and spend time with him.  People like you and I understand the magnificence of the present moment.  The passing of time. And the blessing of another chance at love and happiness.  Forgive me for not writing more, my brain, my heart is with him.  And one more thing.  My first husband Bjarne would always shake his head when people would complain about growing older. He would say, I wish I was that lucky.  So, wherever you are today, however old you are, take a deep breath and stay in this moment, it is our one and only forever.    With so much love for you, Christina

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