Hello my lovelies! It’s July! 2017 is half over. In six months we’ll be musing about how quickly the year went, wondering where it went and thinking about the new year.

Let’s take a moment.  How have the first six months of 2017 been for you?  How can we reap the best of the rest of the year? What do we need to change? Or is everything going swimmingly?

2017 has been like nothing I expected or wanted when it started out. It’s been difficult a challenge.

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The bronze Spirit Warrior Sculpture by Ogala artist Colleen Cutschall at the Indian Memorial. Little Bighorn National Monument, Montana.

 

I can hear the followers of Camp Liza canceling their subscriptions as I write.  Because who wants to read about death?  The fact is, if you think about death, like the Buddhists do, you will live ever so much a more beautiful, rich life. And we all want that.

So today, let’s think about death.

This post is inspired by the accidental death of a friend last week. It was a day like any other. An artist, he went to work. A big machine fell on him. Yup.

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One day last week I cried so much I had to drink tall glasses of water for the rest of the day to rehydrate myself. I cried for different things that both were and weren’t happening to me. I won’t bore you with my “stuff.”  I’m sure you have your own.

I invoked Tony Robbins’ “90 second rule” — but I turned it into a four hour rule, because 90 seconds seemed a little too short for me (haha). The 90 second rule is to let yourself feel your pain, sorrow, suffering for 90 seconds.

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Lately, fear has crept into my life.  I can’t pinpoint exactly when, why, where or how.  I never used to be a fearful person.

When I was younger, I’d make a plan and go for it.  Move to New York and go to grad school? Yes! Quit my job and start a business? Yes!  Move to a foreign country to write a novel? Yes! Marry a foreigner?  Be the founder of the Merida English Library?  Yes and yes!

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choco crackles

⟡ Breaking with tradition ⟡

You all know how I feel about tropical Christmas.  I wrote about it last year. In general, I  take comfort in traditions.  The ease of cooking Thanksgiving dinner, menu always the same.  The cherished Christmas ornaments that I pull out of the box each year.  The Easter ham.  The Fourth of July barbecue. But this year with the holiday season in full swing, I’m feeling the season in a different way. [Read more…]

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Andrew Wyeth “Master Bedroom”

Is not for sissies

If you are getting tired of reading The Dengue Diaries, imagine how I feel living it. This painting captures, for me, the peace and yes, somewhat desultory nature of being sick alone.  Perhaps the dog is enjoying a cozy nap, but there is a moment of utter solitude in this picture which speaks to me right now. [Read more…]

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Andrew Wyeth “Wind from the Sea” 1947

Oh, are you still sick?

In the grand scheme of life, dengue and chinkungunya are nothing.  Pfft! There are truly horrible things that people suffer with and die from.  Bottom line:  it’s not cancer. I’ve lost count of the weeks.  It doesn’t matter anymore.  I really wish people would stop asking, “Are you still sick?” in an annoyed tone, meaning, haven’t you gotten over it yet?  Followed by a grudging,  “Well, you look good.” My reply?  “I hope you never get dengue or chinkungunya.” [Read more…]

Surrender-Dorothy

The hot topic

This is the view from my third week of dengue, still in the house, on the couch. Surrender is the hot button on the internet, the “new” cure for all that ails you.   But it’s an age old, traditional Zen concept.  Some people say surrender, others say acceptance.  Surrender seems more active, there is movement, a letting go.  Whilst acceptance seems like sitting back, chilling. [Read more…]