I’m softer and rounder. I’m slower and kinder.
embracing my curves and
laughing the lines
watching the years turn
knowing where I came from
no clue as to what is ahead
I play more and stress less. I notice beauty in the everyday and I’m seeing lots of gray.
Turning 36 is the best gift I have.
I’m healthy. I’m happy. I’m content.
I feel free and creative.
I have support and am surrounded with love.
I give love. I do good work.
I love my children and these beautiful days. Seems like one after the other..
There is no beginning to this, no end. It’s just my life.
I’ve developed my practice and found a teacher.
In this moment, 36 is full of life. All the intentions and the dreaming and wishing has expanded my world into deep happiness.
It comes with struggle, for sure but it’s different now.
Turning 36 is an honor, a privilege really.
This morning, in my yoga practice I did something I have never done. I brought myself back in time, to a young couple far from home.
Rebellious & optimistic, these 2 decided to have a baby. unmarried,unplanned, no promises.
I don’t know much about this time, but I know it did not last long. I know they were not meant to be together. My parents were NEVER “my parents” they were always, my mom & my dad. I have always had totally independent relationships with them. We were never ( in my memory) a family.
But THIS morning, I took a moment to go back to my birth. What was that day like for them 36 years ago. Who were they? What did they feel? Was that the only moment, the only day we were a family of 3? I know so little about this time and I don’t need to.
Whatever the reason, they brought me here. And since I have never been happier in my life or felt more connected or alive….. I have to thank them. They brought me here to this moment, in this life.
Where the sun is peaking out of the clouds.
The birds are singing to me.
Milo is chatting quietly to himself in the other room before he falls off to sleep.
There were many times when I felt lonely and lost, empty, scared and angry. I spent days and years wishing my parents were different, wanting us to live “the perfect” life, dreaming to be someone else.. and when that all stopped…. I woke up to my life, with the people they are and the reality of it all.
BOOM, my heart opened. my life became lighter. I felt ease. I saw love. I let go.
So today might be the first time I have told them, Thank you for this “birth” day. Please know I don’t take it for granted. I know how lucky I am to have been born to you. You taught me empathy, acceptance, you gave me REAL life, you gave me you.
This is what you gave me, the ability to see this, to understand love, to know we are perfectly flawed. We are whole. We are love.
“I’ve learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow. I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights. I’ve learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you’ll miss them when they’re gone from your life. I’ve learned that making a “living” is not the same thing as making a “life.” I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance. I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back. I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision. I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one. I’ve learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back. I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn. I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
I started a project on the blog 2 days before I moved. It has been too much to keep up with what I thought I could do and instead of stressing out or staying up late, it is just on pause.
I have a huge list of beautiful woman who I will write about. might be more like all summer than 1 month.. but I will get there.
in our new house, there is less. less technology, less space on the inside &
more on the outside. it has shifted my life and my flow, in a good way.
instead of computer or work time- I have been creating my spaces. what I have found is that I have a hard being grounded without my sacred alters.
so I took time the past 2 weeks to sort & arrange my favorite things. creating areas in my new home, dedicated to THIS time in my life. what feels impt to
me now, what I want to manifest & surrounding myself with the beautiful.
I will be back with more writing on my fav women but right now- we are headed to the beach for a 4 day family vacation and I plan to disconnect as much as I can…
it has been, magic.
my word for the year.
too many beautiful snowy days & sun shining mornings.
trips to Yogaville & Grailville.
sitting. sitting. stretching. crying. feeling. letting go. moving on. being still.
wow. I see the magic in this day, after day, after day.
I can hear the drip of the rain outside our windows of this new -to -us home.
the magic happened when we sold our house of 9.5 years & moved into a new space, a new life, a new view. rain sounds different here. its hitting a pipe of some kind that is like a bell, a chime. reminding me to come home. to awaken to this beauty.
magic is no less than what has happened.
a dream turning into reality on a much larger scale than I ever imagined.
reflection takes me to gratitude.
new teachers for our yoga home who practice & study & learn with our growing community.
new relationships with mentors and opportunities to play with my new found love & passion for Circus Yoga.
only 8 days ago, it wasn’t this easy. drowning in boxes, feeling tight & sad & over my head. but space and nature and practice and connection brought me back.
this isn’t always easy, but it sure is beautiful.
it is magic.
Yoga MAMA LOVE #6
Michelle Cohen & I met at Itsy Bitsy Yoga training.. and we connected quickly. I noticed her bubbly and chatty personality and could not believe the energy in this little lady!
I have seen Michelle TOTALLY commit to her own personal growth & happiness, “stand in her own power “and use boundaries in a positive and meaningful way for her own life.
In the past few years I have seen her take personal responsibility for her work / life balance and make sure to set boundaries around her top priorities. Michelle & I have worked together on events that have been life changing for me, bringing Katrina Kennison & Karen Maezen Miller to LO along with co- hosting seasonal retreats for LO and Mother’s Day events.
I LOVE working with Michelle and find her work inspiring and heartfelt. In the past 2 years she became a Doula and is now a POWERFUL force in the birth world in DC. I hear beautiful stories about her commitment to her clients and her impact on the birth of their children.
This year, Michelle also committed to her meditation practice by attending a zen retreat for the first time.
I am so proud of her. Just a few short years ago, she was dreaming & wishing that some day she would be able to make an impact in DC birth and yoga world & community, be of service, spend quality time with her family AND her self, and commit to a meditation practice. AND NOW it’s all happening. It is such a pleasure to watch her shine.
Michelle & Eli at our FIRST LO staff meeting, 2010
it’s a wonderful gift to be pregnant with your oldest friend.
I met Erica Moffitt Dilks the day she came home from the hospital. Her older brother and I were buddies.
I have literally known her, her whole life.
I have so many wonderful and hilarious memories of us…from childhood games and running back and forth between our houses to making after school snacks ( like chocolate, bananas, syrup, cookies, in the blender…) and riding bikes all over the hood. As we grew, we had more in common and became closer. We had a blast, always singing songs in the car, meeting boys, going to the mall, driving around town….
Erica became a reporter after college and I was SO proud of her. She is amazing on screen, so smart, so interested and so real. She makes news reporting look easy, ( WHICH it is NOT!! I have learned so much behind the scenes info and it’s super tough!)
I remember being little girls and dancing around the house singing and dancing and pretending we were famous and on TV. And to grow up and see her best friend ON TV – living her dream, it’s truly magical!
Erica was on my first date with MEL… She was visiting us at GW for the weekend when I took her out on our friend date to meet this “older guy” I was interested in….and then of course she was in our wedding.. and I was in hers 5 months later. It was a fantastic year for both of us.
Erica and I have literally been through every up and down that 30 + years of friendship can bring.
What amazes me is her spirit to persevere & her incredible creativity in the kitchen for her kids. AND she is hilarious. She has made me laugh and been an incredible person in my life , for a very long time.
I love that she takes so much time to make life fun and meaningful for her kiddos. Thank you MAMA for being in my life, for so long and for just being YOU- no one else. Your light & energy & humor- I know I will treasure for the rest of my life.
Little Graces MAMAS
Today’s dedication is to a very special group of women.
When Saylor was 18 months, I joined a playgroup and met a fabulous group of moms.
Steph, Kaci, Renee, Liz, Jamie, Victoria, Christie, & Shari
I adored hanging out with these ladies. The kids had a blast together and we started happy hour playdates on Friday that were fun for us too!
We still meet for non book club dinners to share stories, recipes, laughs, and good times. It’s so nice to have a group of mom friends that you can always just be yourself around. When I was opening lil omm in Palisades, they sent flowers & took classes. I remember that year, sharing my dreams for LO with them. And I’m so glad we kept in touch.
Today, I honor my friend Katie LoMonaco. People used to ask us how we met, how we became such good friends.. and we would laugh, not sure if we should tell the truth. The truth is that when we met, she was a bartender at our local Friday night hang out. we went so much and she worked so much that we became very good friends. Katie has the most warm welcome smile and presence. Everyone was her friend and she always took good care of friends and customers.
Over time, we became very close.
I asked her to be in my wedding and shortly after she asked me to be with her while she was in labor.
Katie has been a solid anchor with no friend drama for a long time. She now has 3 kids and and lives an hour away, and even though we don’t talk regularly. She is always a part of my life with any major transition, issue, problem or celebrations. And I know she feels the same about me.
When she calls, I pick up. True friends are the best. I love you, Katie!
lil omm has a “godmother.”
Someone who takes care of us, remembers our birthdays, bakes for us, shows up for all the classes and tells everyone about the studio.
Mary Ann Reed is an incredible woman.
She takes care of her family with such love, with such intention and devotion.
Mary Ann has an incredible spirit and anyone who is her friend knows how amazing she is, we are the lucky ones.
She is so committed to her life, to her family, her yoga practice and to her health.
When she learns something new to DIVES into , she takes it full on, she embraces is spreads the word to others that she cares about.
I remember her first class at LO, and her 100th class ( We brought balloons & flowers!).
She has babysat my kids when I needed an extra set of hands, cleaned up the studio lawn and volunteered with her family at every event.
I am so blessed to have her as part of the LO family and she is the mama that I love today.
On May 28, I turn 36. I want to celebrate these years by honoring a number of MAMAS who are true gifts to the world. Women who have deeply influenced and inspired me along the way. I want to say thank you.
So here is day 1…
For the first day of MAMA LOVE,
I want to highlight 2 women who have been ” like moms” to me since 1996.
In 1996, I went to GW as a very moody freshman. And there I feel in love with 2 girls who would become my sisters.
(I have written about Chrys and Mere before, and you can read that here. )
BUT little did I know, that I would ALSO adopt 2 moms. That Ruth & Jeanne would bring me into their home and treat me like a daughter from the moment we met.
Ruth, Chrys’ mom is one of the biggest hearted, sweetest and positive people I have ever known. She has incredible loyalty and fierce devotion o her family. We have spent many hours together talking and I love that she has taken me into her life and always made me feel part of her family.
Jeanne, Meredith’s mom is something else. She is incredibly sarcastic, intelligent & been one of my biggest supporters the past 18 years. Every time I have an idea or have done anything- there she is – saying “go for it” or ” I believe in you.” She is truly a character who tells it like it is and someone I am so grateful to have on my team. We are always laughing… ( or crying)
At a time in my life when I was lost, these two women helped me find my way.
Thank you Jeanne & Ruth for being so loving and mothering me, I know we have been through a lot of life together and I’m glad I had you with me along the way. I deeply appreciate you.