The Struggle is Real

Last weekend, I had the privilege of attending a contributor dinner hosted by the publisher of Chicken Soup for the Soul. It was an intimate affair, with those feel-good vibes going on the minute you entered the room. We were all strangers, smiling politely at each other as we introduced ourselves and then launched into the social game of twenty questions, searching for what we had in common. It’s always fun to find a match, something shared upon which to base a conversation. And soon, folks were engaged in casual chit chat as the sounds of laughter echoed in the air. I approached a half -filled table of women and asked if it was “the fun group.” That seemed like a good ice breaker, and they

The Portal

I have always been fascinated by the idea of a portal. As a child, the adventures of Alice, who went through the looking glass into a mythical land, complete with tea and cake, caught and held my attention. Growing older renewed my interest in such things, perhaps even more so recently. My personal health crisis has certainly made me wonder about the threshold to eternity and the ultimate journey to the Great Beyond. There have been numerous books written about near-death experiences, stories of people who were involved in almost-fatal accidents or who were comatose for months. The tales of what they saw on “the other side” are varied and intriguing. I am curious about such encounters, que

The Power of Now

Over the past year, I developed a bad case of “experience envy.” Perhaps I always had it and just didn’t realize it, but my guess is that illness merely magnified those feelings. I found myself wishing for exotic vacations and adventurous moments, things to fondly remember when I reached the end of my life. I arm wrestled with regret over chances not taken, opportunities that had passed me by. But in my frustration, I had an epiphany as I came to understand that other occasions are equally as important. Today, more than ever, I am aware of soul-to-soul talks, delicious meals, and outrageous laughter. And I appreciate them in ways I never did before. I have come to see that lunch with a goo

The Boost

Television shows like Survivor, Naked and Afraid and the newest, Castaways, interest me. I often wonder why people would choose to leave their comfortable lives to go out into the wild, sleep among untamed animals, and face the challenges of the elements. With a fast food drive-through on every corner in urban America and easy accessibility to mega supermarkets, few of us have experienced ongoing, gnawing hunger. And yet, the folks who participate in these shows must willingly face starvation. (And bugs) It defies all logic, doesn’t it? Since the beginning of time, man has tested his limits. Explorers and adventurers have bravely attempted the impossible and illogical just to see if it can

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