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Love Hurts

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I remember my first date EVER–the song playing on the radio was “Love Hurts” by Nazareth (https://youtu.be/6pHNkOQCIzkLove Hurts)

Nick picked me up in his classic Oldsmobile, can’t remember the year but it was old.  When he backed out of the driveway,  his car wouldn’t go into forward drive!

It was quite a scene.

So, we drove in reverse down the street for a couple of blocks before it decided it would shift into drive.  All the while, “Love Hurts” was playing on the radio.

That is one of those moments etched in my mind.  My first date turned into my first love and Love did Hurt!   It went on and on with make ups and break ups and lies and betrayals and all kinds of HURT!HeartVibrating

“It is better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all.”  Those are the words and feelings I tried to embody after that  first break up with my very first love in life.  They were simple words that did soothe the pain.

Now, 35 years later, I find comfort in the words again .  Yes, my heart has broken into a million pieces because what I thought was going to be a perfect partnership, turned out otherwise.  LOVE HURTS!

Yes, from the place I sit today, it feels like it would be much easier to just avoid the love offerings out there.  You know, just stay out of the game and sit on the sidelines so I don’t have to get bruised and burned again.

That, though, is the ultimate betrayal.

Being in a relationship that becomes deep and intimate is such a gift–a gift of learning  about ourselves through those other eyes.

I have learned so much about myself this time around and now it’s time to go back to work on healing my precious Tara within.  I will get back to loving myself completely before I can even attempt to love another.  He simply reflected to me, like a mirror, all the ways I need to love myself more.

 

I really did think I loved myself fully.  I guess I can say I was fortunate to go through this to see that I’ve got more work to do on ME!BlissfulFullness

So, even though LOVE HURTS, I am willing–willing to love myself fully and then and only then will I want to get back on the field and play the game!!!

 

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Their View Mirror

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I have noticed something that I just keep getting clearer and clearer about it.  Every time I get down or go into a depression, it is almost always because I am viewing my life from someone else’s view of me.

To say it another way, I love my little life.  I live in a funky environment that is rare and doesn’t necessarily FIT into what society views as normal.  I absolutely devour my nights at home and LOVE my living situation.

Yet, there are times that I find myself depressed.  Lately I’ve been able to pinpoint why–it’s because I’m viewing my life from THEIR view of me.TARAreflecting

People say things to me that are so inappropriate and with such pity aimed at me.   Please don’t pity me just because I’m not living the life that you would live!  I am me and you are you–please consider that when you judge!

When I view my life from within, I am blissful and happy.

When I look through THEIR eyes, I become that poor pitiful person they see me as.

Really, I ask you, why does it have to look a certain way?  Why do our lives have to conform to everybody else’s way of living or society’s view of what a successful existence is?  It doesn’t, and the clearer I get about this, the more I thrive in my own reality.

“The older you get, the more you understand how your conscience works.  The biggest and only critic lives in your perception of people’s perception of you rather than people’s perception of you.”
― Criss Jami

Brilliant!

So, when it all comes down to it, I AM in charge of my thoughts and feelings.  When I feel what people are perceiving my life to be, I don’t have to allow those perceptions to permeate my being.

Our lives are our own and when we embrace them with a sense of wholeness, we thrive.

As Emerson said, “Envy is ignorance and imitation is suicide.”  God I love that.

So, this I say to myself and to you if you care to receive it:   our lives are our own and we get to decide what we value and what feels good–nobody else.  I suppose it is easier said than done but with some introspection and breath work within, we can come to the place where it really is okay REGARDLESS of what THEY think!BrightLightLantern

Safe and Secure? Not So Sure

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Security is an illusion. 

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure.”  Helen Keller

These are the words that ring in my mind when I think things seem too daring for me, I remind myself that security does not really exist and that avoiding danger is no safer than exposure.

When at the precipice of anything new, there is always the urge to turn back and go to where our lives are comfortable and “secure.”
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I’m 7 months into a new relationship that has been full of love, miracles, connection and synchronicity.  I’m glad I reminded myself of Helen Keller’s sentiment because with anything in life, there are the balancing energies that cause a bit of fear and the desire to go back to when things SEEMED safe and secure.

Risk, vulnerability, and an overall letting go of concern for the future or the past, now that is a trick.  Love, new and developing love, is always unsure.  Why not think and feel in the direction of hope and trust?

If we stay focused in “back then,”  we miss being here.  If we worry about what’s going to happen, we miss being here and now.

Oh how we cling to our ways though, I had gotten so comfortable being on my own, when things became challenging in our relationship, I thought about running back to when it was all so much easier!

Trust, faith, and moving in the direction of the light are what I strive for.  If I listen to the concerns of society and some who spend most of their time in fear, I am bound to draw back in fear and doubt.  If I’m not careful, I’ll hear those concerns coming from my own mind chatter!

It reminds me of a piece I wrote, Pronoia.  Are we going to be paranoid and expect the worst to happen or are we going to turn paranoia upside down and expect the best!   https://naturegirltara.wordpress.com/2013/02/09/choose-pronoia/

Yes, that’s what I choose.  I choose faith and I choose a daring adventure.HappyTara

I choose the daring adventure, even when it gets scary and challenging because that’s just the illusion creeping in.

I told a friend, “I want to spend most of my time living in the realm of NOW, the space of being in the presence of God, the presence of Love, and the presence of what is possible.”   Amen!!!

Those times when I find myself wallowing in the “what is” consciousness, I wake up and fill myself with the knowing that there is no Security and that life really is a daring adventure that can start right now, if we allow it!

Goethe writes,   “Whatever you can do or dream you can do, begin it.  Boldness has genius, magic, and power in it!”

 

 

 

 

25 years Of Living & Learning In Los Angeles

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June marks 25 years living in California.

 

Here are 25 things I have learned about living in Los Angeles after  25 years of living here:

 

1)  I really don’t have to fit in with the crowd here–NOR do I want to!

 

2)  In time, everyone talks like a “Californian.”  We say things like, “yeah, traffic was so great today–I took the 405 to the 101 then down Kanan to PCH into Malibu, then back up Malibu Canyon to the 101 to the 405 and home–I flew the whole time!”

 

 

3)  There  are so many natural places to play, it’s not just a cement jungle!  There are the San Gabriel’s, the Santa Susana’s and my stomping grounds, the Santa Monica mountains.  Play, play, play! EagleRock

 

 

4)  When I go to Beverly Hills, I feel like a fish out of water!  There are oversized lips and boobs and the gaudiest cars and stores and everyone WANTS you to see them.  It just feels odd.

 

 

5)  My environment caters to my healthy lifestyle–everywhere I go! Health food stores, restaurants, markets, healthy pharmacies, juice bars, and yoga studios abound!malibugymsteamroom

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6)  Meetup.com inspires me in more ways than just meeting people.  Meeting people is easy because there are a lot of people and there are a lot of people wanting to meet people! MeetupPhotomy meetup hike

 

7)  Riding my bike along the 22 mile ocean bike path from Pacific Palisades to Palos Verdes has been a dream of mine since I was 10- pure joy and exhilarating beauty!IMG_0268

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8)  Yes, you CAN find lots of places to ride horses and yes your childhood dreams can come true and yes you could live on a private horse ranch and learn more than you could ever imagine about horses–I did!

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9)  Yes, you can go to the beach in the morning and be on the ski slopes by afternoon!  Road trips up North are my favorite–the whole of this state thrills me!  The hike/climb up to Half Dome in Yosemite is a major highlight!purple passion point dume

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10)  Rainy days are embraced and cherished, they provide a much-needed break from all the sunshine!

 

 

11)  Malibu really does feel like a small town.  It is as beautiful as you might imagine.  Malibu is where my soul resides, it is my Shangri-La! onewiththetrailtara

 

12)  I love the endless choice of yoga studios in Santa Monica–The Mecca of Yoga.  I’ve learned from many teachers and they’ve all been in Santa Monica.  I know how fortunate I am to live HERE.   I can’t imagine my life without my yoga practice!taratreeinyosemite

 

13)  People who live in affluence are not as you imagine–most I have met, anyway, are the real deal– lovely and generous and some of the nicest people in my sphere.  To judge anyone for any reason is the most limiting activity there is!

Classy Cat!

Classy Cat!

14)  Even though this is a big city with lots of people, sometimes a person can feel very alone.  Other times, it is so small and I run into people I know all over the place!Papparazz

 

15)  Driving in traffic can be beautiful, honestly!  I see massive amounts of beauty from high atop the freeway overpasses.  And no, traffic doesn’t only happen in Los Angeles, traffic happens in every city!  I love my electric car,  it actually gains miles on the battery while in traffic instead of sucking up gas!

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17)  Not driving my car and riding my bike to work is freedom!

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18)  Yes, you can enjoy going to museums–my favorite is  just across the canyon–The J. Paul Getty museum off the busiest freeway–the 405!  I have a confession to make though, once I took a friend there and we didn’t even go inside and look at the art.  We stayed outside looking at the gardens and the views of the city!  The art IS amazing though, so hard to comprehend the precision and talent that exists in all of us.GettyGardens

 

19)  I have made more friends here than anywhere I’ve ever lived.  Most of my friends I’ve met through the myriad of personal growth I’ve been through.  Landmark Education (http://www.landmarkworldwide.com/the-landmark-forum) stands out as a huge influence in my transformation.  I am supremely grateful to the work they do in over 20 countries worldwide.  My Abraham-Hicks cruise friends and local meetup meetings with like-minded people sharing uplifting stories of worthiness and the magic and miracles that happen everyday is priceless.  Sharing.

20)  The free concerts on the Santa Monica Pier in the summertime FEEL really good.  To be out in the night-time ocean air listening to music and meeting new people is my kind of night!

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21)   There are farmers markets everyday of the week all year round in my town and surrounding towns.  That is such a gift!IMG_2631

22)  In all the years I’ve lived here, I’ve not taken one day for granted.  I love where I live and have lived and I’m so glad I made the bold move out here those 25 years ago.

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23)  Again, I say, “fitting in”  is not an option for me here.  Authenticity does exist and only we can choose it for ourselves.  The alternative is working really hard to look good to all the people around you.  Ugh,  as Ralph Waldo Emerson writes, “envy is ignorance and imitation is suicide!”

 

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24) Take time to play, it is the secret to perpetual youth!  
25)  Listen to your intuition, your gut feelings, they are always correct!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Presence Is Power!

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Did you know– Gratitude is THEE most powerful spiritual practice to cultivate.  I spend my days looking for beauty and I always find it!  I am grateful I can see beauty everywhere I look.IMG_0785

Recently I had lunch with a friend and her sister.  I really wanted to get to know her sister better since I had only met her briefly in the past.  Instead of engaging in conversation, she looked past me and judged every person that walked by behind me.  Granted, we were sitting in a restaurant on Venice Beach and that is quite the place to people watch–I’ll give her that.

At some point though, we need to BE with the people we’re with.  Every comment was cutting and critical.  It was hard to be in that space since most of the people I spend time with have realized that I don’t like to go there.  

Truly, I’m looking for the greatness in others because I know that will enhance who I AM.CriticsEncouragers

I want to be present with people, not tear them apart.

After too many non stop minutes of this, I decided to do what is the biggest NO NO these days–I picked up my phone, started taking pictures of the beauty around me, posting to Facebook.

I’m sure that was frowned upon but, truly,  I had to remove myself from all the negativity.VeniceBeachBeauty

Something I learned a long time ago, whenever you judge anything, you hold yourself apart from all the things you are wanting to be and do and have.  All the attention on “what’s wrong” just pulls more of “what’s wrong” into your life!

The other thing I know is that we are all part of the same stuff, let’s stop tearing ourselves and others apart and start celebrating the greatness within and beyond ourselves.

I want to be with people when I’m in their presence — I don’t want to judge everything that moves behind them!  It’s a practice, it’s an art–to become present in the moment and fully absorbed in that moment with no distractions.

Presence within ourselves and the presence within our fellow beings is where ALL the power resides but it’s only here NOW!  I’m going to celebrate NOW. Please, please, BE With Me Now!

Time Passages!

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It’s a thrill to know that someone from over 30 years ago was thinking of me today, remembering me, speaking about me fondly. 

I got a message from one of my Facebook friends.  She is the daughter of my very first boss!

Tino, my boss who I haven’t been in touch with in almost 30 years, had some blinds installed in their home today.  As he and his wife talked to the young man who installed the blinds, he discovered that Tino was the co-owner of Howard’s Drugs in Livonia, MI.

That was the connecting fuse.  Paul ( a young man I dated briefly) knew me when I worked at Howard’s.

What’s very cool is, now I am going to be in touch with the very first boss I ever had!

For years, after leaving Howard’s to go out and explore new horizons,  I would always pop in every few months and just stay in touch.

It was hard to let those connections go!IMG_0508

Tino and Dennis (the Pharmacists and Co-Owners) were such a formidable part of  my growing up.  I started working there when I was 17.  I worked my way up as a cashier of the tobacco and candy counter  to the pharmacy where I worked for 6 years.  I learned a lot about life there in that pharmacy!

After several years of popping in and catching up though, they sold the store and there was something so sad and empty inside me–that I couldn’t go and see people that were once a part of my life, really a part of my growing up!  Home base.17yroldTara

Sometimes I feel that way about all of my past relationships.

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could  just “catch up” with everyone we ever knew and loved?  Well, maybe not everyone!

Facebook  has added a depth and richness to my life, we really are fortunate to live in this time–this would never have been relayed to me without my Facebook friend connection!

In his email reply,  hearing from me after all these years Tino said,  “I tell you I got just as excited as your old friend Paul– when he came running back in the house and said, “I was in love with Tara” and I said, “we all loved Tara.”  We both enjoyed the moment!

Think about it.  Life is  long.  We touch lots of lives and go through many stages and take all kinds of paths.  To hear that someone from all those years ago is remembering you, talking about you, wondering about you — makes you…transcendent!TaraPikeMarket

Can’t think of any other word to describe it.

I

You

We…

Transcend Time!

We go BEYOND the limits of time!tara-and-the-coastline.jpg

There’s just something so sweet about that.  Even though people are gone from our lives, they are still part of our lives and we are still part of theirs. Our soul is our home.

I’m not sure if it’s just that I’m a very reflective person or if it happens to everyone, but so many people pop into my conscious thoughts and memories.  Mostly just flashes, but it’s enough of a flash to be a thrill.

Yes,  I do believe I’m living my heaven on earth when I have those flashes–all the best characters of my life  visit me everyday.  Thank you!

Love IS– My Sister Valorie!

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It really does seem true–the people we’ve known and loved the longest seem to be taken for granted the most!

Well, let me tell you about my sister Valorie!

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Our bond started early, she spoke for me.

I’m not sure when I did start talking but my mom had to have a real serious talk with Valorie because whenever someone asked me a question, Valorie always answered it.  “What’s your name?”  “Her name is Tara”.  “How old are you Tara?”  “She’s 3” ….Mom had to sit her down, get her attention and explain how important it was to let me start talking for myself.

Thanks to Valorie, I speak up  for myself and I’m good at it!

Valorie was always there for me.  Even though she is only 2 years older than me, she was the closest thing to mom that I had. ValandTaraFerrisWheel

Until she wasn’t….

As I got a bit older, maybe from the age of 10 to 15, Valorie became a bit of a bully to me (I suppose I was a bit of a brat too).  Not all the time, but a lot of the time, she was really rough on me.

She once rubbed dog poop in my face and mouth and sat on my head and pulled my hair til it felt like it had all been pulled out.  

If you see her wrist, there’s a big scar on it–she went to punch me (after I kicked her)  and I shut the door as she punched–right through the glass window.  Oh I thought she would kill me after that one!  There was blood everywhere, we had to go get her some stitches.  Drama–but this is what growing up with a sibling looks like, it’s not always love and light !  This is life at it’s best, really!

 I survived.

As the years rolled by, we grew up.  Valorie became a girlfriend to a couple of different guys–I still know their names and can still see their faces vividly.  They weren’t good enough for Valorie and her intuition guided her out of those places.  Not  long after,  she found the love of her life and she’s  been married to Glen for 35 years.   They have two lovely daughters who are off in the world and living and enjoying life.ValandGlenBLUE

Even though the closeness Valorie and I  shared as children marched forward in years, we still feel the essence of that closeness in this present time.

Valorie has rooted for me and supported me in a myriad of ways.  Although they may have been unspoken, I have felt them.Sister

There is something about those early years that just imbeds itself  into my  cells and my memories.  Feelings and emotions are hard to encapsulate into words.   To me, though, the feelings and emotions that came from being loved by my sister Valorie have just held on–as if in an infinite embrace.  I am supported, I am loved.

I am held in an infinite embrace.

So, even though we don’t often speak our respect and appreciation frequently and freely, it will always be there in the depth of my being.  The space it holds feels so dear to me.  There is no questioning that space–no doubt about her love for me– it just remains and it just IS.TarAnd Valorie

To the people who know my sister Valorie, you will all agree, she is so much to so many people.

She is a friend and confidant to everyone she knows–they can all count on her ear to be there for the listening. 

Valorie is a loving mother,  a loving wife, a loving daughter and a loving daughter-in-law.  She is constantly giving of herself to everyone around her.  Her job is so perfect for her–she gets to help welcome newborn babies into the world since she is a labor and delivery nurse–that is the most powerful place on the planet–in the presence of those miracles– and she gets to be there all the time!

It is clear to me, she deserves to be in that miraculous place because she is such a gift to everyone she knows.  GlowingValorie

Out of all the people I’ve known throughout my lifetime, Valorie is the most open-minded and open-hearted person.    She can hear a story, feel the emotions and be the first to want to engage with someone who may have been emotionally detached for a lifetime.

She is just plain fair and sensible and loving and always expecting the best out of people.

Gosh, I hope she really gets who she is for everyone in her life–the words I use certainly cannot give her the praise she deserves.

Even though she knows in the depth of her being  how I feel about her, I wanted her to hear it again–at least once in sentiment and words.  Her spirit fills me up –all the way  up–all the time that I’m in her presence!  My love for Valorie lives in infinity!ValorieFritzyTara

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