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Uncovering Joy (#fivethings)

1. ‘I danced in the dark during that meditation,’ I told him. ‘I danced in the light,’ he responded. Wherever we go, there we are.

2. My howl at the Blood Wolf Full Moon lit a fire under my ass. I am a productivity machine, surveying and culling, sorting and tossing. Every so often I pause to consider the depth of this movement. Could it be that the excesses of our culture have taken us full circle to the true meaning of abundance?

3. We lived overseas during the most transitional years of this country’s oblivious journey to excess. From 1989-2001 we traversed the world like highfalutin' gypsies. He played the role of celebrated hotelier, I took the lead as the anything-goes, wild-child bride. During our absence, the US flipped onto its back exposing its underbelly. Bombs, propelled by US fighters, lit up starry nights in the Middle East, LA erupted in riots, Mother Nature rumbled through Florida, anarchy prevailed in Oklahoma City, and a sitting president fell from grace, as the horror of all radiated through cell phones and computer screens. The day we moved into our first US home, more terror struck the nation. Surrounded by half unpacked boxes, we watched in horror as towers, and the humans contained within them, fell to the ground. My husband called us with a shaky voice from DC as the Pentagon shuddered and smoked from the impact of the 3rd jetliner. He saw the terror play out through the window of his hotel room. For weeks after the attack, my children were terrified to go to school. ‘Why don’t they have a big fence around our school,’ asked my teary-eyed 6 year old daughter. The irony that my child felt safer in South Africa, the country of her birth, than she did in our home country was not lost on me. I can still taste the despair we felt when we realized we made a mistake fleeing South Africa. Mayhem and resolution came in many accents there. All South Africans embraced the dangers they faced, and took measures to protect not only their cities, but specifically, each other. Surprisingly, South Africans dealt head on with their racial divides by speaking brutal truths to each other, proving that dialogue can be constructive and peaceful at the same time. We often attended dinner parties where both CEOs and landscapers broke bread at the same table. They'd call each other names, then discuss the implications of their misunderstandings. I still marvel at the memories of these extraordinary interactions. In contrast, Americans seemed to be moored in delusions, false narratives, and hollow ideologies. The idea that America was ever the land of the free and the brave would prove to be the real danger the country blindly faced. Perhaps we find ourselves full circle now as an entire movement leads us to a place of relinquishing possessions in the most harmonious of ways. Hold it close to your heart. Feel the energy of the item. Ask yourself if it brings you joy. Could this be the plot twist we needed to swing us back into a higher vibration? Is this new wave, sweeping the country, going to transport us back to ourselves, ground us in authenticity, one lovingly bequeathed possession at a time? Does it have the power to unmask our gluttony and the terror that reigns both within and without us? One moment of sparked joy equals one step toward the freedom that is born of peace. Faith. Trust. Hope.

4. Discernment has changed the way I love. It has closed the door to gratuitous connections and opened the portal to true belonging. I am grateful for the choices I am making as my wise woman guides me to a life of contentment.

5. The lure of our ‘almost there’ has a strong pull on me. I find myself projecting into the future, disregarding the present. We are so close now, it’s easy to lose sight of the right here, the right now. I must be both vigilant and indifferent to our soon-to-be-realized dreams because this very moment is the most enchanting one of all.

DIARY OF A HOTEL WIFE

Barbara Anne Klein

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