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Find the center of your hurricane, which isn't always the weather.

Find the center of your hurricane

Find the center of your hurricane, which isn't always the weather.Find the center of your hurricane, which isn’t always the weather.

As I write this, the remnants of Hurricane (now Tropical Depression) Guillermo is dropping rain on us.  Hurricanes in Hawaii are a big deal.  We’re thousands of miles from any help and each island is a sitting duck for such a natural disaster.  Thankfully, Guillermo is bypassing most of the island, though heavy rains are expected for Oahu and Kauai.

Guillermo has been a threat for over a week, and we’ve watched it approach since before it had a name.  Reports arrived daily from specially equipped airplanes which flew over the eye.

The eye is the center of calm amidst the chaos.  I think we all wish for a similar space in our lives, where the outside rarely intrudes and a calmness rules.

It’s tough.  The world is a hectic place with demands that don’t get any easier.  Jobs, family, friends — it’s a never ending carnival ride with increasing pressures.  Finding time for yourself is next to impossible, but it’s crucial that you carve a little bit of time from your day to center yourself and live in the joy of the now.

Pay attention to what’s important. It’s not always the weather.

Put down whatever you’re doing and notice what your family is doing.  Savor that moment.  This morning, I was babysitting my 18 month old granddaughter and had brought along a book to snatch some reading, even if it was a paragraph at a time.  But I put it down and watched her as she rested against the sofa, eating a piece of cheese, as she dumped crayons out of the box then methodically put them all back, over and over, as she ran to the lanai to watch a plane fly overhead.  All mundane activities and none needing close supervision (maybe the crayons), but all opportunities I would have missed if I’d continued to read.

Maybe your demands don’t allow the time to read, or think beyond what has to be done at this moment.  But step back, carve out a fixed point in time, and look around you.  There’s beauty in everything.  Find it, draw peace from it.  Take a deep breath.  Recenter yourself.  Find the center of your hurricane and smile.

Blessings!

 

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Moving thousands of miles from home involves more than selling everything you own and buying it again months later at Goodwill. Your entire infrastructure dissolves - doctors, dentists, the car guy who won't rip you off and your hairdresser.

Moving from home means losing your infrastructure

Moving thousands of miles from home involves more than selling everything you own and buying it again months later at Goodwill.  Your entire infrastructure dissolves – doctors, dentists, the car guy who won’t rip you off, and your hairdresser.

Moving thousands of miles from home involves more than selling everything you own and buying it again months later at Goodwill. Your entire infrastructure dissolves - doctors, dentists, the car guy who won't rip you off and your hairdresser.I’ve had three haircuts (or is it four?) since we moved, including an overzealous stylist who took a bit of my ear with the hair.  These were big box salons, the ones who peg you as “A Number Five”. The type of place where you never have the same stylist twice.

The other day, I needed a haircut and decided to gamble on a salon near my local grocery store.  It couldn’t be worse, yeah?

I opened the door. When I regained consciousness from the fumes of permanents and medieval hair tortures, I gave my name to Flora.

I love Flora.  When I told her “don’t be afraid to go short” with my already short hair, she didn’t question it or nibble off an eighth of an inch, but enthusiastically said, “Now you’re talking!” and got to work.

It was the best haircut ever.

My infrastructure is slowly rebuilding.  Thank you, Flora.

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The tragic news of the destruction of the World Trade Centers made in indelible impression on the world.

Tragedy after tragedy reminds us of what is important

The tragic news from Sandy Hook Elementary has galvanized the nation in support of dozens of grieving families. Blame will be cast and speeches made, urging reforms on gun ownership and mental health treatments. We can only speculate on whether our government takes action on any promises.  It’s easy to talk when tragedy overcomes our nation.

I’m at an age that I can look back at several tragedies in American history.

November 22, 1963 

A Friday. School officials let us out early. Only after we arrived home did we learn an assassin had taken the life of our president, JFK. Before the birth of CNN and FoxNew and a hundred other cable stations, we had three local stations. All weekend, our family was glued to the television, watching NBC’s coverage of the death of John Fitzgerald Kennedy. I was eight years old.

January 28, 1986

I watched in horror and a sick fascination as the Challenger exploded over and over and over again, as we tried to make sense of a senseless act. I watched the launch because of the novelty of having a teacher on board. If not for this anomaly, coverage wouldn’t have taken place.

I was home on maternity leave. My daughter was six days old.

October 14-16, 1987 

The nation was glued to the developing story of Jessica McClure, an eighteen-month old girl who fell down a well. It took rescuers fifty-eight hours to pull her out alive. I was six-months pregnant with my son.

September 11, 2001

A man I worked with received a call from his wife, and he informed us of the hit on the first tower. We listened in horror on the radio as the plane flew into the second tower. I heard Jim Miklaszewski report live from the Pentagon as the third plane slammed into it. Someone turned on the television in the cafeteria, and we watched as both towers collapsed. Numb, the events too surreal to comprehend, we tried to stay focused on work. I was to attend a five-year anniversary dinner for my investment club that night. Instead, I spent the afternoon scrambling for emails and phone numbers (this was before yahoo groups) to tell the members the easiest decision I’d ever had to make: Go home to your families.

The World Trade Centers before the tragedy of their destruction.

Columbine, Waco, Oklahoma City and now Newtown, CT. The names run together in a sea of senselessness and grief.

It’s sad that we need a tragedy to remind of us of what is important – our families. Your character’s angst isn’t important. Deadlines can wait. Forget the little things that keep you apart from the ones you love. Pick up the phone, email a note, Skype, do whatever it takes to breach that gulf. Hug them, hold them, show them how much you love them. Do you want to go to bed tomorrow with their names on a list circulating the globe?

Hug your family today. Never forget what is truly important.

 

 

 

 

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