personal space at nautilus teachings

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we all know them
the ones that get
super close to our faces
to speak,
so close
we can smell
what they had for lunch
or tiny droplets land upon
our cheek as they talk…
they mean well
and i am not sure
they realize
we are not
DEAF
but ultimately
they are invading
our sacred space…
i guess for the most part
it’s not a huge deal
unless it makes you
uncomfortable
as it does so many
introverted people
people suffering from depression
and those of us
who just like air to breath…
it’s like the car that rides
the center lane
nearly kissing your car
so you slow down
veer to the left or right
anything to avoid
a collision…
this is how person space works
we must wait to be invited into
someones space-
even for a hug
because guess what
even though you make like hugging-
and i
do do do love hugging,
some just don’t.
they don’t even like to be touched.
i was recently hugging
a dear friend of ours
when i noticed
he was not hugging back
so i untethered myself from him
and placed my palms on
either side of his cheeks…
he looked down at me
and said,
“what are you doing?
why are you touching me?”

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now this is a close friend i love
and we hug all the time.
this,
this was my sign
that something is off
i had prior knowledge he was not himself,
but i was trying to make him
feel loved…
see that?
“i was…”
“make him feel”
this is a big
no no no
but little ole’ me
just blinked my eyes
smiled
dropped my hands
stepped back
and said,
“i love you.
i am here for you…”
then i walked away…
he wandered around
the festivities
never really talking to anyone
definitely not making contact
with another human being…
d and i shrugged
held each others hands
and i said, 
“listen…no matter what
you will never scare me away
and if you are ever silent
or off i will pull you in so tight
you cannot breathe, stewart…”
he just smiled
and gave me that
‘that’s my blonde ambition for you…’ look
he gets me.
but i felt bad that i invaded
our dear friends
personal
and very private space
when what he wanted
was to be left alone…
we are faced with decisions like this
sometimes in our lives
and today,
three days later
i can tell you,
i am no longer sorry
i did that because
it may have been my last chance
to hug him so tight for a while
and i needed him to know
i love him-
unconditionally
regardless
of his circumstances at this time…

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i learned a long time ago
that people can die
without warning
especially when you are told
‘they are not going to die’
-as my father told me
about my mother-
and then,
WHAM!
their last breath
leaves you
numb…
never be stupid about any illness
in those you know and love…
every moment
we encounter life
healthy or otherwise
we are given a chance
to listen
speak
hug
kiss…
let that person know
they matter in our lives
because like the quote says,
“don’t judge me,
you have no idea
what battles i may be fighting…”
rise up each day
thank God for blessing you
another morning
be kind to everyone
even before your coffee
if need be…
just grasp every nano second you can
spreading happiness and joy
always remembering
there is a minuscule chance
you may never see
anyone again
because tomorrow is not promised…
so,
when someone gets in your face
or your personal space
and it is making you uncomfortable
i recommend you giggle
gently nudging them
backwards with grace…
trust me
they will get the hint!

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peace within you at nautilus teachings

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leaving
runny away
loss
giving up
digging a hole
turning our back
hiding…
no matter what
happens
or what label you give it
sometimes
we
just
shut
off…
for most of us
it is a day off-
at the beach
sleeping
watching tv
playing catch up
manicure
reading a book…
we all have a way
to nurture and feed our souls,
but what happens
if we have a disconnect?
what if that jar
of self love
was empty?
what if instead of
caring for our self
we find we
are sinking into a dark hole?
choosing instead
pills, alcohol, detachment
silence, darkness…
what then?
how do we find
our bubbles of light
and air to feed us
calm peace, healing love?
it’s a tiny word
but oh, so strong…
FAITH
we fall back into
and upon our
FAITH…
what if someone you loved
very much
chose the darkness side?
what would you do?
turn your back?
call?
listen?

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depression is real
this is the season
for it to take ahold of
people we never thought
would ever
suffer from it-
you know the ones…
they go to all the parties
put on the masks
but really,
if you look close
they are flat
standing there
just listening,
drink in hand,
nodding…
they are quiet
they showed up
so no one would know
the battle they are fighting…
or what about the one
who stops answering your texts-
goes into stealth silent mode
refusing to talk
pick up the phone
or even engage in
day to day life?
in my growing up
i was always an observer
a watcher
a woman of few words
sitting in corners
drink in hand
sipping slowly
while all around me,
life happened …
i was called rude
stuck up
a bitch
and perceived by some
to be the elusive
‘you cannot talk to her’
person…
which is so untrue
but i get it…
i am an introvert
social gatherings
had always made me
uncomfortable
until 12 years ago
when i chose
to find out
who i was…

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i am still an observer
only now i speak,
‘are you ok?’
‘how can i help?’
‘i am here for you…’
i learned to listen
to hug
to hold
to stand beside
those in need
supporting them
when they feel like breaking…
i hold secrets
never to be revealed
but given to me
in private release
by those i love
those i just know
and some,
even strangers…
leaving
runny away
loss
giving up
digging a hole
turning our back
hiding…
what do you call it?
do you know someone
who needs help?
reach out to them.
invite them to dinner,
yoga, for a walk,
to church…
just engage them in conversation
then observe their response…
you will know,
immediately…
depression
affects
1 in 10 Americans.
it is a real mental illness.
how can you,
just little ole’ you
help someone
you know who suffers from it?
be there.
don’t give up.
call.
text.
drop in.
invite.
listen.
hug.
love.
accept.
such easy things
and
guess what?
all of them are free.
we have one tiny, precious life
turn off the tv
put the cell phones on mute
put yourself second
take off your rose colored glasses
and open your eyes.
someone needs you.
let your faith lead you
to them
knowing for certain
that peace within
begins with you
and it’s tooooo powerful
not to pass on…

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hugging it out at nautilus teachings

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who doesn’t love a
good hug?
i love hugging.
my favorite hugs
are when you just
don’t let go
you hang on
or they hang on…
last night
d and i went to
Cocoa Beach’s first
annual Christmas Fest
down town…
i was hugging everyone i saw…
my hubby even said,
did you see Eric?
he came back for an extra hug
and said to me,
“Christmas came early!!!”
d knows i love hugs.
some of our close friends
were in town
and i kept hugging them
because you just never know…
tomorrow is not promised
to anyone!
hugs are a sharing of a moment
you can never erase.
i will never forget
my moms last hug.
it was 29 years ago
and i can see it clear as day
it was a ‘barely able to
raise her arms up
please hold me tight
sheri, i love you hug’
it was her last gift to me
12 hours later
she took her last breath…
but even an air hug
can work wonders
just like air kisses
we send them all the time
over the phone lines,
when we are face timing with
someone we love,
even when we see a friend
across the room…
when my kids were little
and having a disagreement
i would put them face to face
as their arms were crossed
faces angry
apologize
and then had to hug it out
til they were all giggling…

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every time a friend of mine
asks for prayers on FB
i put “sending hugs and prayers”
we want people to feel our love
and this is the most simplest way
to grab them from the front
or the back and squeeze…
have you ever seen someone
who is sad and walked over and just
hugged them?
if not,
do it!
or a child who has too much energy
and is driving you a little cray cray-
just hug them…
they will melt and calm down.
it’s such tiny amount of energy
which is needed-
just the thought of…
‘i love them’
so we hug
we kiss
we share
a bond
which is
irreplaceable…
one of my favorite quotes is from the movie
Love Actually
“Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often, it’s not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it’s always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. When the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know, none of the phone calls from the people on board were messages of hate or revenge – they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around.”
if you have not seen this movie
DO IT!
in the scene above
everyone is hugging
and kissing
it makes you cry happy tears
and remember everyone you miss…
this is a busy time of year
many of you will be rushing
from one thing to another-
especially if you have kids-
trying to fit it all in
don’t forget to hug
smile
air kiss,
not just those you know
but also those
who just look like
they could use a big hug…
“if you look for it
i’ve got a sneaky feeling
you’ll find that
LOVE ACTUALLY
is all around”
tis’ the season
everyone
to hug it out!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUoxXpqof8A

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depression at nautilus teachings

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he didn’t show.
you knew he was lost
you knew he was in pain
you kept texting him
you prayed for him
but
he
did
not
show…
the garage was open
the invitation
not just extended
to him
but accepted
by him…
but the fact
was
you knew
in your gut
he would not come
that his illusive nature
would take over
his close to the vest
personality
the,
“i know i am failing life”
persona
would
win…
but you still wait
because the sun is awake
darkness
has not encompassed
the earth…
you put on the christmas lights
pour yourself a drink
and sit
waiting
for him
upon your front porch chaise…
soup in the crock
in case he is hungry
empty glass
for his drink
but
he
won’t
show…
in your heart you knew this
but you brain
wished otherwise.
at this very moment
he is suffering
a break
he is wrestling
with memory
of death
of his spouse
the gift
of accepting
new love
fighting the urge
to stay away
from work
and one by one
people
are beginning
to cut him off…

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it’s not that they don’t care
or love him,
it’s that
life must go on
and his depression
sadness
lack of energy
is bringing them down…
so they turn their backs
walk away
say things like,
“i can’t do this with him…
he needs help, more than
i can give…”
so he screams
in a big house
alone
in the darkness
surrounded
by memory
as everyone else
laughs
loves
lives…
he curls up
with another
pill
one more drink
puts his phone on silence
and
turns
off
the
world…
what do you do?????
you pop in.
you call.
you text.
you bring food.
you hold.
you sit.
you listen…
you do whatever it takes
because
you love him
and you know
if it was you,
he would do the same…
the sun is getting low
you get in your car
and you drive
to his house-
soup in hand
ready to wrap him up
in a bear hug…
but the house is dark
he does not answer
his dogs bark
and then,
you worry…
“what if he…”
you grab the key
to his house
he gave you
and unlock
the door…
you enter
call his name
and
nothing…
just still
empty
blackness
you walk around
searching for him
knowing he is in pain
lost
floundering
in a sea of
“i don’t know what to do,
or how to go on…”

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shoes.
you see his shoes
under the desk
so you turn around
put on the soft light
and see him
curled up
crying…
“go away…
leave me alone…
i want to die…
just let me, please…”
what do you do?
you lie down next to him
take his hand
and cry
with him…
this is what friendship is-
it is the understanding
the acceptance
the forgiveness
of everything…
it is being there
all the time
but especially
when they check out
of life…
you are their life vest
you sustain their buoyancy
you breathe into them hope…
we all fail
at times
we are all weak
and break…
this time,
it was unexpected
for you truly thought
he was good!
happy!
in love again!
so
you no longer wait
to see him,
you place him
his life
his happiness
above all else
knowing
one day soon
he will smile again
pop over for a titos
and argue
about sports
politics
food
life…
kindness matters
people are worth
the effort
we do heal…
it’s just some of us
heal slower than others
and it is ok
to not to be ok,
just never give up
on them
never walk away
for you
truly
may be
their only hope…

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annoying loved ones at nautilus teachings

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do you love someone
who sometimes
annoys the
crap out of you?
makes you mad?
maybe even makes you think,
“i want to put duct tape over their mouth…”
if not,
then you are not married…
marriage is passionate work!
it’s the acceptance
and understanding
that you are both flawed.
the problem though,
lies within having that sixth sense
when they walk in the door
which says,
“they had a bad day
they are in pain
they are over hungry
tired
in need of shhhhhhhh…”
but they blaze in so fast
and your attention is on
12 other things
so you don’t notice
the brisk walk-
always a sign…
so you smile
say hello
and when you try
to kiss them,
they cheek you…
instead of thinking
wow
they have had a hard day
we get offended
put off
and now
we are in stealth mode
thinking,
that butthead
what is wrong with them?
they did not even look
at the dinner i spent
three hours making,
nor kiss the kids
pet the dogs…
nope
they just breezed on past
all of us
to their place of refuge-
door closed
tv on
numbing themselves
to their day
of stress and
exhaustion…

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they are in need
of food,
sleep
and silence…
but the house
is not ready to settle
the kids have not been bathed
the dogs want to go out
and you need to
fill up the minutes
during dinner with…
“OMG! today……”
as they roll their eyes
and kindly ignore you
stretching their neck
and ear to hear and see the tv
you get
offended…
well that mf
i will show them…
tell me you are giggling now
that you are identifying
with even a small piece of this?
the night wears on
they try to tune everything out
they rewind
over and over
the show
because,
“would you please be quiet,
i cannot hear the television…”
by this time you
are concocting in your head
one million ways to kill them!
you are ready to loose it yourself
because,
yes!
the kids are loud
and the dogs are obnoxious
and you want a sweet silent
30 minutes with your love
but your love is
in a blech mood
so you
pour your titos
grab your blanket
crank down the AC
throw the kids
in bed,
unbathed
and retreat
to your room
alone,
with your shows
and your dogs…

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morning dawns,
you rise
start the day
get the dogs
and kids
going,
when
they enter
the kitchen.
you all stop.
stare.
wait.
and then,
they speak…
“good morning. i am sorry
i was quiet last night.
bad day at the office…”
then they smile
hug you all one by one
telling you each,
“i love you. have a great day…”
and finally
you breathe….
we all love someone,
who at times
annoys the crap out of us,
this
is
life…
so hide the duct tape,
tear up the list
of how to kill
someone you love
and get away with it
and embrace the fact
that for some reason
God decided
you get another day
another chance…
then grab your coffee
take the kids to school
walk the dogs
live your life
knowing this is all
temporary
so we might as well
let the little stuff go
knowing once and for all
it’s the routine stuff that matters-
they come home
even when they want to run
they stay silent
because they really want to yell
they wake up happy
because the space you gave them
was a gift.
love the ones you are with-
NOW!
today!
for tomorrow,
well,
tomorrow
is not
promised…

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a soft place to land at nautilus teachings

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the woman
had suffered loss
young
before she knew
her direction
or what her
true north was
heck,
she did not even know
her favorite
song, color, food…
no one taught her
how to let go
no one showed her
how to heal
or embraced her
letting her cry
for days on end,
in fact
no one allowed her
to mourn at all…
she was to take this loss
like it was no big deal
get up the next day
take care of the kids
cook, clean, create
and when the house was empty,
when HE
had left
the family gone home
she found herself
numb…
her tiny son
was the only thing
that kept her going
he was on a schedule
thanks to the person she lost…
lost.
did she loose her?
if so,
can she find her?
for weeks, months
which turned into years
her heart was missing a piece
skipping a bigger beat
than it ever had before
and still
no one talked about death…

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for a long time
she would dial up the phone
and speak,
“so…i really miss _____…”
but no one talked
they just changed the subject
so she sat
crying alone
needing just one person
to say,
“i miss her tooooooooo…”
but that never happened.
not by her dad
her aunt
her friends
her brothers…
and still now,
29 years after,
she mourns
for the loss
of the person
who held her heart
who taught her to walk
talk
sing
dance
love
give…
and to everyone else
it’s as if she never existed…
loss is hard
we deserve to mourn
to cry
to talk
to be heard…
yet for me,
this is what happened
when i lost my mother.
truly,
i say to you
still today
i cannot share with anyone
how much i ache
with the longing
to be able to go back
in time and say,
“mom, i never knew
you were really dying…
they all said you were not
they all lied…”
this is my truth.
what i live with,
every day
of my life.
my message today is simple-
sit
listen
accept
have the conversations
hug
break
hurt
love
and then you can heal…
if we allow our friends
and family a space
for loss
we gift to them
friendship
kindness
understanding…
for each tear we catch
we hold a memory
each sob we embrace
we say,
“you are not alone, i am here…”
each morning they cannot rise
and we open their front door
with coffee and bagels
we say,
“i understand you need time
so i will nourish you…”
all the texts we send
the calls we make
the messages we leave-
they do get them
but they are feeling their way
through loss…

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there is no set time limit
on how long we grieve
so be patient with them
keep a close eye on them
be in the knowing
that they are really ok…
don’t force them to mend quickly
don’t tell them to
“get over it…”
some people never do
that is a fact.
what i do
is embrace each person
i know and love
for who they are
at any given moment
because sometimes
they are cray cray
or angry
or silent
we must
must
must
as loving
forgivning
children of God
understand
we
are just human
full of flaws
and really,
when you think about that
about us all
being changeable
moldable
like a wad of silly putty
that one tiny
bit of knowledge
let’s us see
the importance
of being a reflection
of light and love…
people die.
people break up,
they get divorced…
all they need from you
is a soft place to land
not judgement
direction
a lecture…
love,
they
need
unconditional love
from
you…

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stopping the world at nautilus teachings

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“stop the world
i want to get off…”
have you ever
felt like screaming that?!!
i think we all have
at some point in our lives…
this is the
loudest time
of year for this
to be said,
but so many people
are silently
curled up
in their beds
crying alone
just needing one person
to reach out
listen
hug
just be there
even in their silence…
not everyone
can be a lucy!
some of us
are just
charlie browns
down
depressed
in need of
peace on earth
and good will toward men
always trying to
kick that football
knowing
every time
some one person
will yank out
our glory….
so what do we do?
how do we smile
through all the madness?
some
charge up credit cards
others drink to much
and then there are the
silent mask wearing people
who hide behind
a plastered on fake smile
laugh with you
go to all the parties
let you cry on their shoulder
talk to everyone
and eventually
go home alone
to a dark house
that is not decorated
there is no holly
and certainly
they do not feel jolly
but they are good
at hiding it
they
are
the masters
in disguise…

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i can tell you from experience
once you get used to pretend
it gets easier and easier
the older you get…
you’ve heard the quote
“it hurts,
but that’s ok,
i’m used to it…”
i said this for 37 years
about abuse.
when i began telling people my real story
they had the nerve to call me a liar
someone close to me said,
“oh, it wasn’t that bad…suck it up…”
i was absolutely flattened
by these comments
and not a one of these people
is in my life today.
i was not looking for sympathy at all
what i wanted
was someone to just
shut up
and listen…
for it to be ok to cry
about my bad choices
to let me talk it out
and hear myself say,
‘i was an idiot for staying
and i won’t take it any more…’
but i never got that.
so i stayed until i broke…
someone d and i love
very much
suffers from depression
and when they crash
i make sure i am there
just to sit
listen
dry tears
hug…
we need each other
to uplift
and not tear down…
yes,
this is not the 1960’s
of my youth,
i know that
but as humans
we still need people…
my girlfriend and i text
each other whenever our hubbies
do something we don’t necessarily
agree with-
‘men are dicks!’
it makes us both lighten up
and laugh
because we know
women can be
how do they put it?
oh yes,
‘pains in their ballsacks!’
be an observer
hush your
beautiful self
and notice
who is
shouting,
“stop the world,
i want to get off…”
even if you don’t know them
i promise you
a smile
kind word
hug
will change their whole
outlook on the day
and,
what do i always say?
“in the end,
only kindness matters…”

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sucking it up at nautilus teachings

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i am sitting
at the end of the driveway
upon the morning sun pavement
warming up
my sleepy self.
i am waiting for a friend
to come pick me up
in his big, bad boy truck
so we can move some furniture…
across the street
there is a huge cypress tree
that was ‘tipped’ forward
by hurricane matthew…
the owner has trimmed some
of the branches
but it still needs work
and d and i both know
this will never happen!
i glance up at the clear
gorgeous
blue sky
and notice
the moon-
or half of a moon…
it makes me feel very small
and reminds me
of the new christmas commercial
John Lewis did
with Age UK
to help seniors
who may be alone over the holidays.
with the little girl
looking through her spyglass
at the old man,
who sits alone
on a bench crying
on the moon.
http://www.wimp.com/little-girl-discovers-a-man-on-the-moon/
we really are just
tiny specs
in this huge universe
we call home.
this makes me think of
horton hears a who-
“a person’s a person
no matter how small…”
think about this premise
another town
on a flower
we walk by
every day
ignoring it
walking upon it
plucking the petals off
to make wishes
and this one silly elephant says,
“there’s a tiny person
on that speck
that needs my help!!!”

arent’ we all,
at times,
screaming to be heard
even in our silence?

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and if no one hears us
or takes the time to listen
then why do we keep screaming?
validation.
we want acknowledgment
that we are here for a reason
that we matter…
the wind picks up
i hear the loose leaves
wrestling in the street
almost clamoring for
a spot upon the waving
green grasses
so the street sweeper does not come
and mash them
and take them away from freely roaming…
we all dream about safety
security
love,
our own
“soft place to land”
yet there always seems to be
someone out there
trying to take away
our peace
begging us to get
caught up in their cyclone
of sadness, hatred, ugliness
willing to take us out
at all costs
if we do not agree
and join in their crusade…
i want to be like the moon
i am good with being
that tiny speck
amongst millions of
other shinning tiny stars
i don’t care if i am never discovered
or become famous
i am not in need of millions of dollars
or anything fancy
Jack on the movie
the titanic states this truth perfectly…
“I got everything I need right here with me. I got air in my lungs, a few blank sheets of paper. I mean, I love waking up in the morning not knowing what’s gonna happen or, who I’m gonna meet, where I’m gonna wind up. Just the other night I was sleeping under a bridge and now here I am on the grandest ship in the world having champagne with you fine people. I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it. You don’t know what hand you’re gonna get dealt next. You learn to take life as it comes at you… to make each day count. “
so i leave you with
one last quote
guaranteed to make you giggle
when life is not going as planned
“suck it up, buttercup!”

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nostalgia at nautilus teachings

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ah nostalgia!
the good old days!
do you remember being asked
to get up and turn on or off the television
to go answer the phone
and stretching the cord to the nearest
closet so you could have privacy????
in the days of my youth
which was the 60’s
i lived outside chicago
we had no AC
no camera
no television
we walked everywhere
unless it rained
or was across the town.
on weekends
and in the summer time
we were let outside
after breakfast
and told,
“i will ring the bell
when lunch/dinner is ready,
until then have fun!”
we were young
wild
and loved life.
every day we had
home made baked dessert
which you did not get
unless you finished your meal
and the best ones
were always on the nights
mom cooked liver and onions-
UGH!
i sat at the table falling asleep
on a few occasions
because i refused to eat
and the rule was, 
“you will sit there until you finish your dinner…”
thank goodness we finally got a dog
so i could spit out my food
into my hand and feed it!
the only day we ate dinner
with our parents was sunday…

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sunday was church day
the day we had ‘linner’ (lunch/dinner)
at 3 instead of my brothers and i
eating alone at the kitchen table
mom pulled out the dining table
we said grace
and once linner was over
we went for a ride in the car-
a ride to nowhere
just the windows down
and radio on…
i would close my eyes
and feel it all.
it was a safe time,
our adventures,
my brothers
could not pick on me
and they had to
be quiet
or the hand would come
from the front seat
and WHAM!
it would silence them!
my father taught us
quiet vigilance
as he was a man of few words
i always thought
he stuttered
because he did everything in three’s
tap tap tap
then the coffee cup went down
well well well
then he spoke…
you could always tell he was thinking
but never knew what…
by the time i was 5
we had a television
so, after our drives
we all would sit upon
the blue rug
watching
“my favorite martian
star trek
animal kindom
ending with
the wonderful world of disney …”
we would also get
a new treat mom had discovered
like bugles or doritos
once in a while we got
rootbeer floats.
but for the most part
the only sound was the tv
on sunday evenings.

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we learned to love
science fiction
animals
and imagination
and to this day
we are all
star trek and
star wars fans
we all have at least
2 animals or more
and each one of us
in some way
ended up in creative fields
for out of the box thinkers…
we all passed this down to our
children as well
all raising our children
to think for themselves
live their passion
be an original…
none of us are rich financially
but we are all individually blessed
with close family,
as together
my brothers and i
do not speak
accept rare instances…
how does this happen?
i cannot tell you for sure 100%
but the one thing we all agree upon
is,
unfortunately
it was our
i, i, i…
father
or lack there of.
of all the good things
he did give us
what we really needed
was him to listen
to guide
to punish fairly
to lead
but he just did not know how…
so, if you fast forward to now
we are 54, 57, 59 and 65
life rushed by us
tore us apart
and the fissure
is just toooooo deep.
i love all my brothers.
i have forgiven them.
i love my father
i have forgiven him.
but to just be able to go back
for one day
lay upon the floor
as a family
with the windows open
breeze blowing
cubbies playing on the radio
or Walt Disney
welcoming us to his show
while we munched on
special treats with mom and dad
always behind us holding hands
and smiling…
well, that would be A.O.K.
with me
which is why every year
i sit alone,
candle lit
on christmas eve
and watch
“it’s a wonderful life…”
yes,
life is wonderful
and
yes
“every time a bell rings,
and angel does get its wings…”

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turn down the volume at nautilus teachings

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“honey, can you please turn that down?”
have you ever been asked to
shhhhhhhh, anything?
be it your radio
your voice
the kids screaming…
i know a few people
who have no OFF button
they cannot stop
analyzing
critiquing
commenting
they just go on and on and on…
or how about the people who
you ask a simple
yes or no question to
and you get a whole book
of them explaining why
they said yes or no?
right now our media
cannot help themselves
with their continuing blurbs
and for a girl who does
not do politics
or television
my world has become
even more calm…
noise
opinions
free speakers
bullies
hard headed
stubborn
people who live in boxes
never venturing outside
because it’s just
how they are raised…
i say F-that
start thinking for yourself
if you are interested in
any one thing at all
then be educated in it
but also be kind…
in a world of
7.5 billion people
of which only
325,044,071
live in the united states
we are going to have
thousands of points of view
and you wonder why
there is so much noise?
upheaval?
fighting?

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lack of compassion
empathy
kindness
and forgiveness,
that is why…
yes, this world
needs a huge group hug
yes, people need
to be quiet
and start listening…
of course a universal hour
of candle light only
while we all meditate
letting our minds be still
allowing only gratitude to enter…
yes, restaurants, bars and all public places
need to be no wifi zones
because guess what?
nothing is that important in this world
that we cannot pay attention to the NOW
sure,
you have clients
patients
family
friends
who all need you right away
but in this techie world
people have forgotten
to roll down the windows
and sing with the music
feel the breeze
kiss their skin
talk to another person
in the waiting room
or while in line somewhere
or to notice someone
in need of a hug
a listening ear
or just a smile…
as my d would say,
“SLOW THE FUCK DOWN!
really?
really?”
he says,
“really? that phone call, email….
was so important it could not wait
1 hour to watch your child’s game
listen to them sing, read, dance
have dinner with your spouse
go visit your grandmother?!!!”

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he is a very wise man
who counsels thousands
he
is
einstein…
he makes people think about reality
he jolts them into taking off their
rose colored glasses
and see life as it is
people for who they are
and i love this about him.
he watches and listens to tv and talk radio
he educates himself on the brain, genetics
just human nature continually
and then
there is me
the one he chose
to be his love.
i credit d with helping me find my voice
for it truly was his few words
“blondie, figure out who you are
and be that. show the world your colors…
challenge your fears
and chase your dreams…”
that changed my life…
together
we sit back
in our time to
enjoy a coffee
work on the yard
go to the beach
maybe watch a little
normal television at night…
and then day breaks
he leaves to help everyone
and i get to write
paint
meditate
i get to help
those who read my blog
take my free classes
come to my paint nights
look inside themselves
find gratitude
learn forgiveness
self love
self care
who believe in art
and in me
who trust me
thank you…
don’t forget
your time with me
allows you
immunity
from normalcy
standardization
and analysis
i don’t give awards
for anything
what you get is
absolute
consent
to be
exactly who you
were meant to be
and that
everyone
can create…
please,
“turn down the volume…”

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moms middle finger at nautilus teachings

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this week
tuesday
became my wednesday!
i met mom at
the drs. office-
what a mess!
her dr recently retired
which left her without refills
for her much needed meds
and at 87
she cannot walk,
and is in an ALF-
we hire
a wonderful company
to carry her both ways
to her necessary visits-
handi-cab
we both arrive early
because,
“we need you here 30 min early to fill out paperwork..”
i pop into starbucks and get her
a warm chocolate croissant…
the delicious smell
fills up all my senses-
YUM!
we get searched
receive our stickered
name tags
allowing us entry
take the elevator up to 5
and we sit in front of the window
overlooking the river
as we are way too early
and,
“i’m sorry, she had no paper work to fill out!”
duh! i knew that
but,
i do not argue.
she enjoys every bite of her treat
then turns to me and says,
‘let’s go, i’m nervous…’
so we go into the office
and
SIT
15 minutes later we are in
the room with the PA-
a room i hope we never have to go back to
he was rude
cold
incentive
and downright mean…

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here is this small 87 year old
wheelchair bound
new patient
and
BAM!
we endure
try to lighten things up
we ask questions
everyone is answered
with a lecture
not a bit of kindness or caring…
we are then told to get an X-ray
as mom took a tiny tumble
and her hand is a bit swollen
one hour later we are back
upstairs and waiting
this time they move us to
an empty room-
in fact the whole place
seemed empty
which was weird
because it took me 8 weeks
to get her in…
hmmmmmm
the nurse
who is a very kind young man
has a sense of humor
is gentle with mom
and laughs along with us
at our jokes
especially when he tapes moms
lefthand middle finger
because she fractured it a wee bit…
the tape is lime green
and moms finger is saying
‘look at me’
mom and i look at each other
roll our eyes
smile
as i say,
“hey mom! look which finger it is,
what do you say?”
she does not miss a beat
she sticks up both middle fingers
jams them up a bit
and whispers
‘fuck you…’
we are dying of laughter
i think all three of us
wet our pants a bit!

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we are then released
but not before we make
another appointment for three months
down the road
to “check that she is really taking her meds,
and refill her ‘controlled substances?’”
i get that there are rules and regulations
governing some drugs
and i don’t disagree
but in some instances,
like mom
her drugs are all locked up
and administered…
i could not find a loop hole for that one!
throughout our 3 hours together
i hear over and over
‘i’m so sorry, i am such a burden…’
‘i’m sorry you have to be here…’
‘i’m sorry, i’m sorry, i’m sorry…
being with mom is not a burden at all
i love being in her space
she is funny as can be
incredibly loving and kind
everyone loves her.
at the end of our journey
as she is getting ready to be
loaded back into the
handy cab,
i hug and kiss her
tell her i love her
and the last thing i say is,
“mom you know how i see all this?”
‘how?’, she replies
“i get to be with you. i am blessed to have
a life that allows me the gift of being
with you…never forget that…”
and like always
when to much emotion
chokes her up
she closes her eyes
smiles
then very slightly
raises up both her middle fingers
toward me
as i giggle and reply,
“yup, fuck it all mom!”
may you all be blessed
with one person
who has a great sense of humor
and who changes your life
forever…

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little dancer at nautilus teachings

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she was there
tiny
golden locks
dancing upon her shoulders
collecting small
acorns
always a smile upon
her pink lips
i watched her,
remembering myself
as a child
doing the exact same thing.
i wanted to run
pick her up
twirl her around
letting both of our giggles
echo across the
cool soft dusk of night
i wanted to grab my paints
take her hand
and say,
‘come on, let’s paint faces upon the acorns,
then we can pretend they are fairies…’
but her parents whisked her away
and i found my eyes following her
wishing to be young
just for a moment once more…
tall beauty dressed in white
her dad is a retired fireman.
as he walks her down the isle
she really looks like
‘daddy’s little girl…’
standing side by side
he gives her away.
there is a pause
a knowing glance exchanged
a long kiss on the cheek
and then
release…
she knows her dad is there
feels her mother’s love
surrounding her
as
she
takes
loves hand…
then,
magic
through tears
and smiles
they become one…

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we walk towards the bar
grab a drink
and decide to munch on some
of the nibbles waiting…
when,
WOOSH!
the golden haired beauty
runs by
plate in hand
acorns adorning the table
where she is sitting
i notice her silver sparkle shoes
soon she is doing handstands
in her puffy white skirt
with shorts on underneath
of course
pink top
bright green bow in her hair
she never stops smiling…
d and i giggle
sip, relax and eat.
the band is playing
beautiful music
lights are twinkling
while an old couple
decides they will
be the first dancers
of the night…
their step is perfectly timed
as he twirls and dips her
spreading happiness
to the onlookers.
then,
BAM!
little princess is there
she runs in between the couple
they pause
smile
and each take her hand
inviting her to dance.
i marvel at her spirit
her no fear attitude
when the music stops
the couple bows to her
exit the dance floor
and she stands alone…
she twirls
does a few more hand stands
and then
she dances
to the next song
not a care in the world…
we all remember our first kiss
first heartbreak
first loss
so many firsts
but this one
today
reminded me
of my first bike ride
down the long winding hill
behind my house
the day my father
let go of my bike
and said,
‘sher, no one catch you now…’

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