The Adventure

The flight to Orlando goes off without a hitch.  That much we get.  At that point, the most annoying part of our journey is the fact that our connecting flight in Orlando — which will bring us to our first destination in Salt Lake City — was delayed by 45 minutes.  But we board without issue and I’m already looking forward to when we land — when we can pick up the rental car and drive to our hotel and rest our travel-weary heads before embarking on our mini-road trip across Idaho and into Montana.  I’m already looking forward to the dawning of the next day, when the sun will peak over the mountains of Utah and we start our adventure.   We’re two days out from our 6-year wedding anniversary and my head & heart are filled with what we will do.

As we’re preparing for takeoff — as we are literally preparing for takeoff, plane on the runway, engines firing — the captain comes on and tells us we have to turn back to the gate.  Something is wrong with the air conditioning system.

We return back to the gate.  We wait in the plane, all the while a very upbeat captain with a slight brogue tells us that it shouldn’t take long — and that he doesn’t want to deboard the plane over something as minor as making sure the cooling and heating systems are working.

Twenty minutes later, we have to deboard the plane. Continue reading

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To Do With Myself

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On Sunday — on Father’s Day, no less — I finished my in-person exam/practicum, thus completing my 300-hour training in yoga therapy.

It capped off an amazingly busy May into June; a time where there seemed to be so much going on at once that I could focus only on the most immediate deadline.  From my maid of honor duties, to my best friend’s wedding; from leading workshops, to taking them; from hosting dinners & barbecues, to my in-laws coming in from Ohio.

It also capped off a gently transformative and evolutionary 10 months, a time where things fell into place — where light was shined where it needed to be shone — and everything tumbled into the exact spots they were always meant to be.  It was a 10 months that were never calm, never linear, never one-thing-at-a-time. Continue reading

Thelma & Louise

My maid of honor speech — at least, the written draft:

Like any good maid of honor speech, I’m starting off with an anecdote.

(Bear with me on this one – at least this anecdote involves us jumping out of a plane.)

I should just jump ahead and say that it was a skydiving plane, for skydiving purposes. It wasn’t like we were on a commercial jet and decided, “YOLO.”

But that’s just what we did the summer after our freshman year of college.  And it all came about as we were driving around the shorelines in our hometown area south of Boston, reliving the days when we would do this practically every evening and weekend in high school.  I forget exactly who proposed the idea at first, but I do remember the conversation going a little something like this:

“Do you want to go skydiving?”

“Yeah, sure.  Let’s do that.”

And, with that, we turned the car around, drove back to her house, got online to find a skydiving (because this was before smartphones back in the dark ages when you had to find a computer to access the internet), found a skydiving place, and made a reservation that day.

Two weeks later, we jumped out of a plane. Continue reading

Wounds vs Scars & Desperate for Stories 

It started with a conversation about writing a memoir — particularly, my memoir (or, perhaps, technically, second memoir) and how I’ve hit the brakes a little bit.

“I don’t understand,” my husband said. “I feel like, when I was growing up, the only people who did memoirs were presidents and generals, and it was usually a look back on their lives.  Nowadays, it seems like there are all these women writing memoirs about one or two events that had happened to them.”

I had never given too much thought to that before — that we live in a post-Eat-Pray-Love-world, one where the nonfiction section is lined with memoirs written by women about somewhat recent events.  I thought of the fervent successes of books like Wild and Love Warrior and the response to my husband’s inquiry came flowing out, as if the answer had been hiding in my subconscious the entire time.

“We’re desperate for stories,” I said. “Women are.” Continue reading

You Are That

It hit me over the head while I was knee deep in what was essentially my yoga teacher homework.

Knee deep in ancient readings and modern-day people’s analysis on them, scanning through the Grand Pronouncements from the Upanishads, and stumbling upon a simple phrase:

Tat tvam asi.

You are that.

It hit me over the head like only one phrase had ever done so before.  It struck deep, leaving a loud and reverberating message:

“This is my next tattoo.”

Continue reading

Battle Scars

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I didn’t want to wear blue jeans when I went to pick up my car, for fear that the blue dye would tint the leather in the seats.

It was my first car in over 7 years — and it was my first brand new car, ever. The car I owned from ’04 to ’06 was a ’99 Chevy Cavalier, a former rental car with a subpar braking system. Nicknamed the Chevrolier, I drove that little green clunker as recklessly as any teenager would, blazing down the roads of my hometown, hugging corners like a NASCAR driver and deliberately speeding up over hills to make the car gain air.

How I survived those years without a single ding, dent, or speeding ticket, is beyond me. Continue reading

Return to Racing

Check-in this year is mercifully indoors.

The day’s weather hangs on a precipice.  All it takes is a slight breeze or the sun going behind some clouds and it tumbles into an arctic chill.  I’m dressed to be comfortably warm in the middle of running.  I’m certainly not dressed to be comfortable in the meanwhile.

It’s the city’s Shamrock Shuffle — a fun two-miler around the downtown area before the parade.  We check-in and get our bibs and find our group of friends.

“The cheapskate in me wouldn’t even sign up for the race,” says one of our friends, as we talk about getting our money’s worth. “I’d just run alongside everyone for free.”

“Grab some green construction paper and some safety pins and hope no one notices,” my husband adds in.

Last year, sign in was outside, when winter was mild and meek and spring had subtly slid in.  It takes a while, but eventually I realize that my last race was the race last year.

“It’s good to be back,” I think to myself, even as I shiver at the starting line. Continue reading