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This Phoenix Speaks

Seven years in the making, my first published book, This Phoenix Speaks , is now a reality. The tireless and tiring work invested to ma...


What do you keep on shelves?

My first thought is for all of my books and movies. Then I think about my collectible mugs and other knick knacks. I also think about the clocks and pens and stickers lying in piles on the window sill and other shelf-like places around my home.

Dishes and other housewares are piled on shelves in my kitchen cupboards. These are a different type of shelf though. They get paid attention to on the daily.

Then I think about my heart. I put it on a shelf a few years ago because I was too afraid to get hurt again. I set it in a corner to collect dust, thinking it was for the best. I couldn't trust myself to choose someone who would choose me back. Or so I thought. I was really just having a really long pity party.

I've taken my heart off that shelf and been dusting it off for awhile now, and it feels good. It feels like it is long overdue actually. Hearts need to used on the daily. They need to love and be loved. Just like the dishes. For daily use.

serenity soon

I'm unfamiliar with this term, serenity. I've heard it is quite the treasure, and so as I find myself inching toward the border of this uncharted territory, I catch myself holding my breath from time to time, waiting for it to not be so good. Yet somehow the landscape just keeps on getting better and better.

Don't get me wrong, I see the mountains in the distance. For sure. Life wouldn't be life without mountains and valleys and earthquakes, but life is also about smooth waters and blue skies and sunshine. Right? I just haven't seen much of the latter in such full measures for a very long time.

I truly can't remember when the last time I felt like I was at least nearing serene shores. I've had excitement and fun and kindness and friendship and affection, but I have not had so much directed solely in my direction from one person with such tender loving care in an indeterminate amount of time. It has been that long.

It is astonishing as I try to write about it. I do not think I misperceive either, and I honestly feel so many butterflies of pure joy that I do not know what to do with it all. Grown ups are typically settled a little better by now, and here I am with so much newness on the horizon. It is amazing.

Acceptance and affectionate friendship are part of what is leading me toward this well of serenity. I have become so vulnerable—I've made myself this way because I am too bold for my own good—that I create mountains for myself, yet I am surprised with acceptance and forgiveness that I don't even have to ask for really. It is just there, waiting for me as I open up and tear down my walls.

How could tearing down walls lead to serenity? It is almost counterintuitive, right? But I tell you, I am feeling what I believe could possibly be serenity or close to it. My heart is at ease in all its excitement. It is wishing and wondering yet confident. I don't even know what to do with it all.

And then I wonder—does anything I am writing make any sense whatsoever? And I laugh. I hope you do too. I am so happy right now, so at peace, carefully walking along the edge of serenity so as to not disturb any falling rock.


A blank slate of a day ahead of us—a lovely unplanned day
Quietly taking shape as the hours turn to afternoon
With the sun cutting the winter air in half and half again
As it warms the sidewalks and then the street beneath our feet
Walking and talking and sitting and laughing
Driving and listening and wishing
For a clean slate road like the one we found today
A little rough in patches but not so bad when you look ahead

Blue skies and lovely water lapping the marshy edges
Perfect in its imperfection
Showing me how relaxing is done
Giving me a change of pace as I take a second glance
Looking down the lane
I see a joyful road ahead of me—with you

friends forever

Have you ever received a gift that got you thinking about the real gifts in your life? When I got a custom-made mug in the mail, I sat there crying as I held it in my hands because the realization of what I have, a 30-year friendship, is the gift. The mug just stands as a manifestation of the bond of love we share.

Looking back on all the times my BFF Forever (my term of endearment that began with irony but has stuck) has been there for me, my breath is taken away. She has been with me in one way or another through every heartbreak I've ever experienced. It causes me to wonder if she signed up to be one of my guides before we came to this earth. I don't believe in coincidences, so it must be the case. She's just always there.

That thought then causes me to wonder how I'll survive without her. I can't even imagine not having her to run things by and to laugh with and lean on. I can't think about that anymore!

I have so much on my mind now, and it all started with a custom-made mug tugging at my heartstrings.

everyday creativity

Creativity is part of my everyday life. I don't really notice how infused it is until I come across someone who doesn't know me well and makes comments. Most of the time, people say stuff like how amazing something I put together/arranged is, but sometimes, I get looks like I'm trying too hard. Getting snapped out of my reality to notice how I might seem weird or even strange to others is always interesting. I look around me and wonder what else might appear unique, and I feel out of place for a bit, but then get right back into the swing of creativity. There really is no other way for me to be.