the spirit of the journey.


i believe that i am a patient person in many ways. patient and accepting of others. but, when it comes to processes… not. so. much. at least not right now in life. my love & i have this thing about hating the process, we talk about the process of brushing our teeth before going to bed, of walking to work, filling in forms, of waiting for answers… so, perhaps i don’t mind the process, it’s the waiting that i hate. when i know i want something, then i want it. like this whole moving thing… i am thankful to get to spend spring in sweden (hoping that it turns out to be a beautiful spring. so far, not so great), but on the other hand, i just want to get this moving thing underway. i’m ready to move on.

yeah, i’m not so good at letting things take their course. every morning i find myself talking to the trees. begging them to please just show me a few little buds, something, anything,  to let me know that they will have some leaves eventually. right now, it’s hard to believe.

and any learning process, any personal growth. forget it. i just wanna hop right to the lesson to be learned. i don’t wanna put up with the shit, the tough times, the hard challenges.

and paperwork. applications. job-searching. apartment hunting/waiting. i don’t want any part of it. nope. just get me the job. move me into my new apartment. and let me get started on my new way of life.

and yet, i know that without the journey, without the process, i will miss out on life. so do i really want to skip over everything? it’s like that quote or saying that i’ve heard somewhere about life being the stuff that happens in the middle. it’s not the dates of when we were born and when we die, but what we fill our days with. if i skip over the processes, the day to day living, and skip right to the end, then i’ve missed out. big time.

think about taking an airplane on a trip. it’s like magic. i get on a plane in one country, sit for some hours, get off in another… with totally different cultures, climate, and people. and while i love that air travel gets me to far away places quickly, i love road trips way more. i love getting in a car (especially when i’m driving) and discovering something new, or taking  unplanned roads all along the way. the road trip becomes the destination. the whole journey is the way. it’s not only about the beginning and the end, but about every curve, diner, landmark, mountain, valley, desert, motel, person, picnic, photo opportunity, and random stop all along the way.


photos from pinterest

so, since i’m such a lover of road trips, surely i can take that spirit of adventure with me into every aspect of my life right now. surely i can calm my soul enough to center myself, breathe deeply, and trust the process. let everything take it’s time. to be a calm, sturdy, secure, grounded, person filled with peace that spreads to everyone i meet…. that’s what i really want. besides, the process is the adventure of my every day life… and i certainly do not want to miss out on anything.

breathe deep. and trust with me. peace.

23: technology.

my first apple. still using the way, check the time. now look how bright it is outside. crazy sweden.

with technology, we always think about moving forward. progressing. everything getting better. faster. thinner. sleeker. cooler. smarter. and to be honest, that is what happens with technology. it gets “better” with time. it improves. i mean, when i was in college/university blah-blah years ago, we only had 1 computer lab. we had to sign up for a time to use one of the schools 10 computers if we wanted to have our papers typed, not hand-written. true story. i had a word processor in my dorm room. do some of you even know what that is? it’s a fancy typewriter that had a 3 inch screen that showed what i was typing on the paper that came out the back as i typed it. yep. and then, my cell phone. it was in a bag, and it sat on the floor between the 2 front seats. i plugged it into the cigarette lighter and it was only possible to use when riding in the car. it was a car phone. there were no real cell phones. i listened to cassette tapes & eventually had a crapload of cds in my car, all over the floor. in order to change the cd, i needed to stop at a stoplight or pull over, since it required so much effort to find a cd, take it out of it’s case, & insert it into the cd player. oh, and don’t even get me started on the internet. it was just being introduced to the public. i remember some conversation with an old boyfriend about email accounts. he had set up one (he was always on the cutting edge. still is.) and i had not idea what the hell he was talking about. why would i need an email? couldn’t i just call people? or visit them? (i had the same battle with texting some years later. hehe.)

so, in a rather short amount of time things have changed drastically. for the better? well, yes, i think. although, i could name a few negatives too. but, i’m not gonna do that in this post. in this post i’m admitting that i’m a techie junkie. there i said it. lina & i want the newest things. these things are fun & exciting, but smart & practical in many ways also. they make things work better, make life easier, allow us to communicate & keep in touch better. yes, yes, they’re expensive too. generally. but, we save our money & decide to spend it on these kinds of fun things, instead of buying new & expensive clothes, shoes, bags, etc. all the time. it’s our choice. and we choose to invest in cool, new, up-to-date technical things. yep. we’re  little bit nerdy in this way. and perhaps a little materialistic too?

however, today as i’ve been thinking about technology & all the great things it has done, i thought in general about moving forward. is it always good to be pushy & move forward? always anxiously waiting for the next great thing. is it good to always be so eager to progress? perhaps the desire to progress and move forward at warp speed is a symptom of desiring to be in control. at least it is for me, in some ways, i think. i want things to move on, to what i want them to be. and i always associate moving forward with being better. i want things done in my way, in my time. therefore, i want control over the situation. i suck at backing off & letting things be. but, perhaps i need to slow down. to accept & take things as they come. things will progress. that’s natural. but, perhaps sometimes i need to back off and stop trying to control the progression. just let it be. let things take the time they need to take. and while it’s taking it’s time, try to be aware of what’s actually happening now, how i’m feeling now, instead of always missing the now because of wishing/hoping for what comes next. besides i can’t get to “then” without experiencing “now”. i need today. and won’t i be a better person for living for today instead of always looking toward tomorrow?

in other words, wait. trust. hope. live.

it’s a fine balance, being proactive with our dreams, hopes, and futures… and waiting, letting things take their own sweet time, letting life unfold, trusting the process. life moves so fast anyway. why would i want to be in a hurry? i’d be missing out on so much.

here’s to all of us finding the courage & strength to back off a little bit. to slow down. to let time do it’s thing. here’s to trusting that, in time, we will all feel peace.

the love of my life.

i’ve always thought that love conquers all, that love can be strong enough to keep hope alive & make all things well. i still believe that. only now that i am a bit older and wiser, i know that love cannot do it alone. love needs patience, trust, hope, and commitment by her side in order to win. luckily, i have found that kind of love in my life. it is my overwhelming joy to share love, patience, trust, hope, and commitment with my wife, my everything. sometimes the road forward is not easy, but i am filled with hope because of our  love. sometimes the journey is filled with beautiful moments of bliss, and i am left breathless. to share the dark moments, the scary moments, and the breath-taking, heart-pounding, sunshine-y moments with someone… that, for me, is love. that is life. and this love, this life, is a gift that i have been given. you can be sure i do not take the love that has found me for granted for one second. i cling to it. i celebrate it. and i commit myself to nurturing it over & over again, every day. come what may.

 “the greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.”

~ from moulin rouge 

sending love & peace to you tonight, dear readers.

sometimes i just need a reminder.

some days you expect the sun to shine, and instead rain falls from the sky.

and then, other days, you believe it will be rainy & cold, only to realize that the sun breaks through the clouds and warms your face.

yes. in life there will be rain. but, there will also be sun. it will return. hold on. hold fast. just believe. never give up. and remember to always breathe deeply. you are never alone.

sending you peace. and the strength to persevere.

high above the clouds.

you were born with potential.

you were born with goodness and trust.

you were born with ideals and dreams.

you were born with greatness.

you were born with wings.

you are not meant for crawling, so don’t!

you have wings, learn to use them and fly.

~ rumi

wishing you a day of soaring high above the clouds, filled with peace.

what would you die for?

for me, today is all about passion. surrender. and trust.

    • passion for a cause, or a belief, that is so strong that one is wiling to risk his or her life – literally or figuratively.
    • surrender to a life of non-violence, peace-making, and love for others… instead of power, violence, greed, and love only for one’s self.
    • and trust that, in all things – even the worst possible moments – good can arise, transformation is possible, and love ultimately wins… call it karma, call it faith, call it universal truth.

because i believe in these things (passion, surrender, and trust), i can face the darkness of today. the darkness of life. naive as it may sound, i know (not in a “i know more than you, you should believe me” kind of knowing, but it a “this is a very personal, from deep within my soul, unexplainable, spirit-driven, buddha-ish enlightenment” kinda knowing) that darkness does not win.

today, i am celebrating good friday. not a good & happy day in itself, but a day that looks ahead to sunday – the third day, a day to celebrate new life, new beginnings (hence the name “good” friday).  in sweden today is  called “långfredagen” = long friday (fits a little better, i think). it is a long day, if i allow myself a chance to reflect instead of pushing right on toward all the good stuff waiting for me on sunday. it’s typical of humans, though, to not want to face the darkness, the suffering, and the pain in our lives. but, i am one of those weirdos (call me emo or something) who wants to soak up today for all that it is. i’m not morbid. but, somewhere, somehow in my life, i learned that in order to fully understand & feel the joy in life, we must have the pain. light is only as bright as it is, when contrasted with the darkness. spring only seems so beautiful because we struggled through the dark, cold winter. get my drift? i don’t exactly understand this ying & yang, this balance between the black & white… it is a mystery. but, nevertheless, the balance is a beautiful mystery, i think.

 a rainy, snowy, gray good friday in sweden.

for me, good friday is about remembering the passion, surrender, trust, and death of jesus. essentially, the day that God experienced exactly what we experience, as human beings: pain, suffering, betrayal, hopelessness, fear, abandonment, and death. whether one believes in jesus as being fully human & fully divine at the same time or not, i believe that there is no argument that this was a man who, according to the accounts we have, lived passionately his mission in life, staying true to himself at all times – spreading a message of love and hope. a man who surrendered his needs and wants, his fears and doubts to a higher purpose. a man who trusted in the power of love over anything else and faced his death; even though, in the end, he did not completely understand the suffering and abandonment he experienced. he passionately surrendered, & trusted anyway.

and there are so many others who have followed in his footsteps… martin luther king, jr. mother theresa. ghandi. but not only those we always think of… there are also many today (known & unknown) who put their lives on the line for a cause or a belief – facing violence, bullying, prison, even death. the protesters in egypt last year, those standing up against racial and/or sexual discrimination, the 99% protesters in the states, holocaust survivors, haitian women fighting for political & social equality, teenagers at my internship who have turned their lives around & now want to give back… the list goes on and on.

the point is, we don’t have to be someone famous or rich to change the world, to make a difference. in our everyday lives, we have a choice. will we live passionately, true to ourselves, surrendering our own lives, trusting in the power of love? or won’t we? will we open our eyes to see the possibilities and opportunities to share love, hope, justice, & peace all around us, or won’t we? just a smile, just an ear to listen, just a tiny gesture or love to someone in our family, to a friend, to a stranger.. that’s all it takes. we don’t have to be burned at the stake, but some of us will be. and we will be bullied. we will face violence. we will be surrounded by darkness. confusion. pain. suffering. it may be our own, or it may be another’s.

the question is, will we give up? or will we keep fighting? will we turn and run, afraid & pissed off? or will we remain steadfast & true to ourselves? will we live with passion & love… even to the point of death?*

quote of the day:

you can choose understanding over anger, believing over nonbelieving, [non-violence over violence], action over inaction. it gives meaning to every choice we make.”

~ Yolanda King (human rights activist & Martin Luther King, Jr’s daughter).

*and by death, i mean literally (because some people do die for what they believe in) and figuratively (ex. dying to our plans so that we can live a more authentic life).

sending you peace & courage to make it through the darkness.