AND Create the Space

July 20th, 2014

The reminder to write a weekly entry for this blog travels with me wherever I find myself traveling for work. Whatever is going on, it is as if I have an alarm clock in my head reminding me that I need to have the entry ready for posting before early Sunday morning.

I am not someone who delights in making lists of things to do. If I do so, it’s to compensate for a memory that might fail me in making sure I naturally meet a deadline that I don’t want to miss. In those cases I will make a note and post the reminder somewhere on my desk. The reminder to write an AND entry sits prominently on the desk, encouraging me to write early. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Separate Fiction from the Real Story

July 13th, 2014

I am fascinated by the power of a book or theatrical play to transport us to another world so completely that we forget any other reality, if only for a moment. The gift of attaching ourselves so quickly to the characters presented offers insight into our willingness to be sucked into others’ stories and to unconsciously make them our own. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Seize the Moment

July 6th, 2014

The sun was warm on my back as I walked the beach in the early morning. A cool and refreshing undercurrent of air gently brushed my skin, as I walked along the water’s edge. The sky was blue without any clouds. One man was fishing with two children. A few people passed by with a nod or smile.

The beauty of the beach with its overnight deposits of shells, several with creatures still inside, wrapped me in a moment of peace. The line from e.e. cummings’ poem, “as small as a world and as large as alone” played in my head. AND in the moment, which may have been several minutes, I felt my connection with the oneness of a universe to which all living creatures belong. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Celebrate Independence

June 29th, 2014

In thinking about the upcoming Independence Day celebrations in the US and reflecting on a recent trip to Holland during World Cup festivities, I am struck by the promise and gift of independence. Flag waving and dressing in the colors of the country team during World Cup games reflect the gift of freedom to identify with something bigger than ourselves, something we share with others. AND in these times, I also find myself acutely aware of countries where such independence is currently unattainable. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Ease into the Rhythms of Nature

June 22nd, 2014

Summer is a good time to recognize whether we are attuned to rhythms of nature or running at unsustainable and unnatural paces. I love to watch the waves break on themselves in storms or otherwise gently ease their way to shore, depositing whatever treasures they happen to be carrying at the time.

No matter what else is going on in the world, the tide comes in and six hours later it goes out again. And the cycle continues. In its own pace and at its own natural rhythm, the ocean displays its beauty for all to behold. At the same time it is a perfect illustration of following your own rhythm, unattached to anyone else’s reaction or response. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Thanks to all the Dads

June 15th, 2014

I reread last year’s entry for Father’s Day and found that I marvel at my Dad just as much today as a year ago. I have borrowed from the prior entry and added some new points as my Dad continues to be an inspiration to me and the many people whose lives he touches every day. And I know that many others serving as dads do as well. In a time of changing roles for many dads, I hope those who choose to guide and parent realize the impact they have on their kids and the ripple effect of their influence. The reach is exceptional. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Remember the Power of Community

June 8th, 2014

On a trip to Santa Barbara last week, shortly after the shooting at Isla Vista, I was again struck by the power of and to reframe our experience and open new possibilities. The UCSB campus community, still deeply reeling from the shootings, was quieter than I have experienced on other visits. Kind smiles and welcoming hugs continued to be present among the staff that I know well. One group sponsored a guacamole tasting contest at 9 in the morning and elicited only smiles, fun conversation, and yummy connections. They added light and lightness that others gladly fed. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Choose For Now

June 1st, 2014

We seem to be in the middle of a major social transition. You can tell by listening to what people are discussing and the number of people whose work or personal situations are shifting faster than they feel ready to address. Topics of inequality and access to resources for those who feel and are marginalized in their places of work and wider society are appearing on the news and in print with increasing frequency.

Along the way, I hear people looking for how to feel solid and grounded when the winds around them shift. AND at the same time I hear people say things like, “For now I’ll just do…” AND I want to wave a flag and ask if they are listening to themselves because their own words reflect a wisdom worth noting for how to deal with transition—keep the focus on what can be done now. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Take a Stand

May 25th, 2014

As we celebrate Memorial Day this year, I find myself thinking about what it means to take a stand for what we believe. The courage of one’s convictions, willingness to take a stand for what may not be politically correct or aligned with the powerful, is within the reach of every one of us. The question is how committed we are to living the democratic ideals that value and welcome the contributions and voices of all of our citizens.

We live in a time where democratic ideals may be challenged by the choices, especially economic, that we make as a society. Taking a stand for ensuring greater access to individual and collective dreams, the pursuit of happiness, means challenging the status quo. As a country, we have fought wars and sent young women and men into countries to support principles of democracy. Read the rest of this entry »

AND Recognize Means and Ends

May 18th, 2014

Over the past several months one of my sisters and I have been planning a surprise party for another sister. We set out to bring family members together to celebrate one who usually takes care of celebrating them. In the process, and to accomplish our ends, we found ourselves having to anticipate and cover any gaps that could undermine the surprise. AND such commitment to the end meant—of necessity—keeping secrets and engaging in conspiratorial detours and distractions. Read the rest of this entry »