San Jose – first impressions

I was transported from the airport to Hotel Luz de Luna by Eric, a very nice man who spoke as much English as I do Spanish – muy, muy poquito. He got me here safely, but it was a bit hair-raising. I was somewhat prepared, having visited Honduras 11 years ago, but honestly, I am amazed they don’t have more accidents.

The city is old, and very crowded, with lots of traffic. Besides cars, there are buses and small motorcycles. The cars and buses merge unexpectedly without signaling, and in the crowded two lane streets, people on motorcycles “white line” even when there’s no white line!

The drivers seem to have a rather mysterious method of communication via honking. Sometimes the honking means “you are in my lane, move away” and other times it means “go on ahead of me.” At one point, Eric rolled down his window and yelled at someone, then apologetically turned to me and said “stupid people” and a lot of Spanish words I didn’t understand. He then proceeded to drive at breakneck speed through what seemed like back roads.

Alto doesn’t mean stop when it is on a red and white sign that looks like a stop sign. It apparently means “slow down just long enough that when you enter this road you probably won’t get hit.” And traffic lights don’t seem to serve much purpose!

Funny thing is, I wasn’t really scared.  Even when Eric didn’t seem to be paying much attention to his driving because he was texting and calling almost constantly, I only slightly tensed up. Everyone drives this way here, so I somehow knew everything was all right. I felt an overwhelming sense of happiness and serenity that I was finally in Costa Rica.

Tomorrow, we get on a bus for an eight hour journey to The Turtle Project on the Northern Peninsula (where, I am told, wifi will be sporadic). We being me and 8 other women, seven of them from the UK and the 8th from Canada. Great people, lovely accents, and I am looking forward to sharing the adventure with new friends.

IMG_20190323_182427.jpgIn the meantime, we enjoyed complimentary Sangria at the bar in the little restaurant here before having a delicious dinner at a restaurant down the street.

Not my first rodeo! (or why getting married at 60 is better than at 20)

Well, obviously, I’m a lot smarter than I was 40 years ago. I’ve made a lot of choices, and in spite of some of them looking bad at the time, I have no regrets.

As I muse, on the eve of my marriage to the man who will be my third (and last?!) husband, I do ponder my life with some amazement!

I married my high school sweetheart at 19. What babies we were! I thought it was forever, certainly planned for it to be forever. We had a roller coaster ride, and along the way seven wonderful little lives were created and birthed into this world. Certainly can’t regret that!

Midlife came along, and until you are there, and then well beyond, you don’t understand what a midlife crisis is really all about. For me, I had the first realization that life was short and I didn’t want to keep living the life I was living. And the only way I knew to change it, because of the rather narrow vision I had at the time,  was to change husbands.

Now I know that I created my world, and I could have created change in a different and more healthy way. But that’s not what happened, and I got just what I thought I wanted. At 43 I divorced and quickly married again, tried to make it work for 12 years. I had wanted more pizzazz in my life, and I got it, but not in a healthy way. What got birthed through all that was an older and wiser woman! I learned to take responsibility for my choices and learned to make better ones! I don’t regret that!

And I was done with marriage! I was 56 years young, feeling strong, and made plans to have a whole lot of fun that I had missed out on in my pursuit of living the perfect marriage. I minimized and moved, and started living the exciting single life.

I joined meetup, because I only wanted to meet people, not date. Oh no, I was done with men! I went to parties, happy hours, restaurants, went to running groups, did all kinds of things I’d never done. I did get involved with someone, but it was always known that it was just for fun. I  went out with a few guys, but it was more out of curiosity then wanting a real relationship.  Then, only a year after I was divorced, I met Robert.

I’d gone to yet another meetup, at the wine bar down the street. He was there, along with a bunch of other people, and there was no love at first sight. Just another guy. But we met again, at another meetup a week later, and that is when something magical happened. I had this moment when we were sitting at the table talking, and the rest of the world just kind of faded away, like in a movie.

So, long story short, that was four years ago. A year ago Robert proposed to me right before my fabulous 60th birthday. (He threw me a great party, btw!)  I’ve had enough time and experience with him to know that he is the real deal, for me. I know what I want, and don’t want.

The biggest deal is that I am entirely safe to be who I am in this relationship. There’s no big drama, no narcissism. There is a constant love and acceptance, and an understanding that love isn’t always FELT. Rather, love, the marriage kind of love, is a knowing. Knowing that you feel good with this other who is a mirror of your true self. Knowing that life is great lived without a partner, but somehow, with this person, life is a whole lot better.

So, never say never. Be open, be careful, be ready to be surprised!

Am I saying “til death do us part” ? No, not this time. Said it twice before, broke that promise. I fully expect it to be til one of us leaves this body, but saying that just doesn’t seem to be necessary.

I am getting married tomorrow!

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Quitting time

wp-1467466842516.jpegI’m leaving my job. I gave notice. I’m leaving. I did it, woohoo!! Dance around the room!

I’ve been writing about this day for  2 years.  I’ve read some of my earlier posts and the yearning has definitely been there. I journaled about it ALOT.  I’ve planned for it ALOT. I can’t believe I’m actually HERE. (well really, I CAN believe it. It just seems strange)!

When I returned to work Monday, after the previous amazing week, I knew that I’d already made the decision. It’s been in my heart for a long time, and the lack of management support that has developed was the catalyst I needed. So it is done.

It is time. Time for me to move on. Time for new things. Time to open my heart to MORE possibility. Time to breathe. Time for more time to do that which makes my heart sing.

Ending and beginning

I have had an amazing week!

Just as I expected, the five day intensive to wrap up my ayurvedic studies was exciting, confidence building, wonderful, and intense! I got to spend 5 days with my amazing teacher and 20 like-minded people who became, in a very short time, my family as well as my friends – my “peeps”.

As I have been away from home, immersed in study and then for the last two days on a mini vacation, I have also been given inspiration on what to do next and looked at my present job situation with new perspective.

The first thing I am going to do is start a new blog which will be focused on ayurveda as well as my personal journey in finding it and how it can be useful in daily life.  I think it will be helpful to me to pull together what I have learned by writing about it, with the goal of being able to teach others and have my own clients.

Stepping away from my day to day usual routine and the job that provides me with a roof over my head and food to eat is always a mind bender, and this time even more so. I had set a goal a little over a year ago to quit my job in June of 2016, when I finished with this course. And here it is, June 2016. A few months ago I decided to stay, to not be so drastic, and then things started happening that make me think that I am being guided away. My boss quit, and I was evicted from the office space I’ve had for 4 years due to what is the equivalent of office politics in a hospital.  Middle management isn’t supportive, and upper management doesn’t care, and as I write this, it just makes me wonder what am I holding on to?

I’ve had a tendency to hold on to relationships and jobs long past time to let go and move on, and I think that is what I am doing. Fear, again. Uncertainty, as usual. As difficult as it is, it is the known. But I have a new tool that I gained recently. Instead of fighting with the fear, or running from it, I have learned to make friends with it, to look at it as serving a purpose. And so I will sit with the fear for a bit, talk to it, question it.

I will go back to the job.  I want to take a zen mindset with me. Zen as defined in the urban dictionary:

swans on the lotus lagoon

One way to think of zen is this: a total state of focus that incorporates a total togetherness of body and mind. Zen is a way of being. It also is a state of mind. Zen involves dropping illusion and seeing things without distortion created by your own thoughts.  

I’ve had a tendency to try to fight what is inevitable, to act as if I have some sort of secret power to change the minds of management if I just dig in my heels hard enough.  I think I’m done with that. I need to stop holding on to what doesn’t serve me well.

I know, deep down that the timing is perfect for great change. That there is nothing to fear. That walking away from a closed door is walking towards an open one.

You can’t win a battle against those who have no honor. There is no reasoning with closed minds and no persuasion that will open a closed heart.  – mystical Cat tarot card

 

And now I turn my heart towards home.

 

Inspiration

I spent five days with an amazing and inspiring group of people.

As part of my studies with New World Ayurveda, I traveled to Portland, Maine to participate in the first of two Clinical Intensives. Since I enrolled in this course about a year ago,I have been learning how to “read” people through looking at them externally, through pulse diagnosis, and in other subtle ways. It was really neat to get together and practice on each other. There’s nothing better than getting together with a group of likeminded people to boost one’s confidence!

Getting to know my co-students, hearing their stories, becoming friends through the intimacy of sharing our stories – that was even better. I was amazed to meet so many who have already walked through their fear and are living their passion, inspiring me that I CAN DO THIS, to stop looking back and keep looking forward.  I made new friends who give of themselves to pursue what they love, caring for family or traveling long distances, and just keep doing what they love. They gave me much to think on.

wp-1460249516517.pngWhat kept coming up, as others practiced on me, is that I still have some issues from the past that aren’t resolved. I have generally thought of myself as stating my mind, not being afraid to say what I think, yet the subtle vibrations in my pulse said otherwise, and as it came up it resonated with me to the point of bringing tears. I realized that I am still finding my voice and learning to speak my truth.  Thus I write here, and paint, and seek  out the company of people who inspire me to go to the next level.

“At some point, if you’re fortunate, you’ll hit a wall of truth and wonder what you’ve been doing with your life. At that point you’ll feel highly motivated to find out what frees you and helps you to be kinder and more loving, less klesha driven and confused. At that point you’ll actually want to be present—present as you go through a door, present as you take a step, present as you wash your hands or wash a dish, present to being triggered, present to simmering, present to the ebb and flow of your emotions and thoughts. Day in and day out, you’ll find that you notice sooner when you’re hooked, and it will be easier to refrain. If you continue to do this, a kind of shedding happens—a shedding of old habits, a shedding of being run around by pleasure and pain, a shedding of being held hostage by worldly concerns.” ~ Pema Chodron

I am inspired to push through the next wall of fear, to not look back, to dream big, to trust my intuition, and to love MORE.

If you want to learn more about ayurveda, New World Ayurveda is offering an introductory course. Check it out!