Tag Archives: courage

leaving home, goodbye

for the last year, i have been pretty much housebound.  some days i couldn’t get past the end of the driveway.  but a gal can’t live like this forever.  so having been freed up this past week, i’ve decided to take a road trip and who better to go with me than. . .

my trusty guides william clark and pongo the dog are with me!

my trusty guides william clark and pongo the dog are with me!  i hope they can restore my courage!

aim high — in this case 52 stories!

so i went to a yoga class at south boston yoga studio with my facebook friend mary mcmanus.  last year, she was friend number 168, meaning she was the one hundred and sixty eighth person i saw in 2011.  she took me on a tour of my older son joseph’s campus–in all four years he attended boston university, i had not once flown out to see him.  bad mother?  maybe.  but it was because i was afraid.   afraid of travel, afraid of flying, afraid of everything.  meeting all your facebook friends all over the world puts a dent in the fear of flying thing.

in any event, i told mary that my new year’s resolution for 2012 is to pay forward the encouragement, love and support shown to me by my facebook friends, mary most particularly.  she was my cheerleader.  she was always one for a good word of encouragement.  i wanted to give that to others and i told her i was coming into boston to meet two new facebook friends who have trouble with panic attacks and fear.  mary and her husband tom invited me to stay with them.  i went out for a three hour lunch with mary the moment i arrived.  i felt so loved and so happy.  we went to the yoga class in part because mary is devoted to yoga but also because i wanted to see for myself whether it had the anti-anxiety effects mary promised.

it sure did.  my acid reflux was gone.  for the first time in weeks, i didn’t have that horrible sword in chest feeling.  i’m not one for organized exercise classes, never gone in for chanting, but this was the goods!  then mary and i went to meet mary tabbi-fuller and her sister in law angela lopresti.  i was a little concerned about mary because she had spent the weekend in the hospital, suffering from an episode of low blood sugar.  i hoped it wasn’t brought on by anxiety.

the four of us ate lunch and mary had prepared a list of resources for angela and lisa to consider.  boston area doctors and therapists and, of course, the south boston yoga studio.   and then it was time to try. . .

there are many ways to overcome generalized panic and anxiety — but one that i really appreciate is conquering one thing and then taking that “wow, i did it!” feeling and applying it to other situations.  lisa and angela both were afraid of elevators but most particularly of heights.  lisa,  a phlebotomist, felt that some of her anxiety had led her to calling in sick more than was acceptable and she needed to get a grip on her fear.  we chose the fifty second story of the prudential center. . .

i was so happy walking into the light with mary, lisa and angela!

angela, mary, me, and lisa at the top of the hub in boston! notice we're not scared to sit by the window, which isn't something i could have predicted!


today think of something you’re afraid of that you think most people are not.  i’m not talking about playing with an anaconda.  i am talking about having a conversation with the barista at your coffee joint, riding the Ferris wheel with your kids, speaking up for yourself at tomorrow’s sales meeting, forgiving a friend and letting them back into your life.


we’re going to party like it’s 4710!!!!

today is another happy new year!  chinese new year is based on the lunar calendar and this year, year 4710, the first day of the chinese new year will be monday. but saturday is a good day to start celebrating with a traditional chinese new year’s eve family reunion dinner and to think about the coming year.  this year, for you i want good friendship–

the chinese symbol for friendship is two right hands facing each other. you will have a lot of people wish you long life, prosperity and health. don't get me wrong. i want those things for you too. but i especially appreciate and want your friendship!


legend has it that buddha invited twelve animals to dinner on the chinese new year’s eve.  he named a year for each one of the animals that showed up.  this coming year is the year of the dragon.  people born in the year of the dragon are supposed to be innovative, brave and passionate.  salvador dali was born in the year of the dragon.  so was john lennon.  i was born in the year of the rat which seems decidedly less glamorous.

if you’ve made a new year’s resolution — let’s say to lose five pounds or to visit every one of your facebook friends or whatever — you might have made that resolution on january one and now you might be feeling like you’re having a little trouble following through.  this is your chance to start again.  i have only a few words of advice:

aim high — if you aren’t scared of your new year’s resolution and your ability to do it, you’ve sold yourself short.  you should be scared of your resolution.

announce your resolution — to your friends, your family, to facebook, get the word out there so that you can have others hold you accountable the way you want to hold yourself accountable.

celebrate the small victories along the way and ask your friends to help you with making those small victories–if you don’t ask, you’re telling them you don’t need them.  

but i forgot that i have one other wish for you this year–

making any kind of change in your life requires courage. it takes courage to say that you need to and even more to follow through. i think courage is a good thing to put together with friendship.

this coming week, i will be visiting a young mom in coldwater michigan who will teach me about courage and friendship!

f2fb friend #107 has her own intentions about the year. . .

i am shaking as i write this because i’m about to start on a nine day barnstorming friend trip throughout the eastern united states and i can’t get myself to leave the house.  there’s a storm out there.  and i’m pretty sure i’m having a heart attack or a brain aneurysm or a nervous breakdown all at the same time.  but i have an intention, a new year’s eve resolution made in haste without regard to consequences.

at least somebody is packed and ready to go!

my friend laurie carver is someone i only see at parties or when she hosts her cabi line of dresses.  she has been a businesswoman for many years and i was surprised when she told me about her new bracelet.

i have been hearing again and again of people looking for love and i don’t think that urge leaves us until our last breath.

laurie and i grew up with the feminism of gloria steinem, ms. magazine, national organization for women, breaking that glass ceiling, power suits.  so i was really surprised at what she had to say about men and women.

laurie is someone i’m going to be checking back in with.  because if that bracelet brings her intention to fruition, i’m going to want one that will give me courage.  me and the lion, who sings

What makes the muskrat guard his musk?
Courage! What makes the sphinx the seventh wonder?
Courage! What makes the dawn come up like thunder?
Courage! What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the “ape” in apricot?
What have they got that I ain’t got?


there is just one thing i have to do now–get in the damn car!

i come home from tornadoes to snow!

i am having the most wonderful fun this year! and i’m having the most horrible time! i want to travel, i love the yearlong party, i want this facebook resolution, i’m going to hide in my house and call in a standing order to lakeside groceries so i never have to venture forth. i was completely into agoraphobiamode yesterday after i got back from north carolina and when i woke this morning there was snow–jeez, what a great day to continue the hiding!

but i had to get out there today because i was meeting up with the facebook friend i admire most, cristina persico.

i met cristina when she joined up with the cast for a benefit show i directed for the pta. she was the pick up the beat dancer, she was the fireball, she was the one who had a smile that made you think there could never be a bad day.

and yet she had ever reason to say “thank you very much world but i really don’t want to be part of things”. . . . her husband and her daughter francesca (frenchie) passed on within a short period of time of each other. i can’t imagine what courage it took to engage the world, to become a volunteer in the fight against cancer, and to show up to be in a silly musical comedy i wrote. she has the best game face.

i want that game face, i want to be like cristina. except. . . the dollface scheduled me in to be part of the classes she teaches. i had a good strategy–i pretended i had to film stuff.

can you imagine actually moving like this for an hour? and this was after she got in from the airport at one thirty in the morning.

i am grateful because cristina has embarked upon a romance. it is something she never expected. this year i see how much it means to people to connect with one person and to make this person their world. that desire doesn’t quit, doesn’t let up, is always with us. i wish her all happiness.

tomorrow f2fb friend #100–and i will ask him about silver, gold and other precious metals! or maybe i’ll just ask him about family. he’s got a rather large one. . .