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“The Gifts of Gratitude and Passion”

On the cusp of my 55th birthday, with vanilla candles flickering in the softly lit living room and with romantic Chicago-Step music wafting from my jumpy laptop’s keyboard, I am sitting here, racing the clock. I want to post this blog, my first one for the New Year. I want to be clear within. I will make time to blog in 2013.…before the clock strikes midnight. It is already 11:01 PM, but I am fearless, which is my avowed mantra, my birdsong for the rest of my life, not just a resolution.

We make time to do what we love. Blogging is no different.

You know, I have always lived waving the flags of gratitude and passion. Somehow, though, the two heavy hitters have taken on wholly new dimensions this year. This time around I am charged, inspired. The water is there. And I fully intend to walk it. The higher that limb, I have every desire to sit there, breathing in the freshness before I leap into the desires of my heart.

Nothing is stopping me. Nothing can stop me. I am invincible. And it is only when I forget, that I realize that I am the only one who can stop me.

There are a plethora of people and things for which I am grateful. To publish my gratitude list is to publish my Soul. It is to live, to race right out on that field of lions, knees knocking, teeth chattering, pulse racing and heart throbbing, again and again, realizing in this moment that I am alive. ALIVE.

Funny. All things truly work together.

On the way back to my sister’s home tonight, my son driving my car, his twenty-six-year-old foot deep in the gas tank, I listen to Nikki Minaj rapping that fabulous line “Everybody dies but not everybody lives.” Niesy, his girlfriend, has it playing from her cell in the front passenger seat. Laila Amor, my two-year-old granddaughter, is singing the chorus sitting in her car seat beside me. I am titillated with joy. At Minaj’s rhythm and rhyme and its capacity to regale a baby. At the song’s line about “being alive in this moment.”

I am so grateful to be alive in this moment. I am grateful for 54 fine, fabulous years on this earth. I am grateful for the gifts I came to enjoy and share with others. I am thankful for my family, immediate and extended. I am blessed to have a cast of friends second to none. I am humbled before the beauty and power of words, written and spoken, and their joy at doing my bidding. I am enchanted at the Universe’s prowess for bringing beautiful people to my heart’s door. I am in awe at the path I travel on this journey and where it has led me and where it promises to take me.

Indeed, I bow to the beauty in all of my experiences. I have been up and I have been down. I have held the key to new homes, never lived in, and I have been homeless, and although there are some who would say I am yet homeless, I am humble, realizing that roof or no roof, I am at home in this Universe. My laughter comes wild and free. I awake each morning, awed, gazing towards the sky’s spotlight, grateful for another day to pursue my bliss. I am grateful for my vision, both inner and outer. So what if I am virtually blind, if I pop out my contacts or remove my glasses; I cherish the sight I have!

That is how I arrived where I am. Pursuing my bliss.

No, I do not judge. I am grateful for it all, every moment, those that left me reeling, wondering how and where the next need would be met, knowing everything was as it should be in the midst of a lonely darkness. But calm was ever near, is yet here. So I drift through my days, enchanted and amazed. Consequently, when the winds blow and I am reminded that I have no key or the world’s idealized security, Spirit whispers softly, “There is no place on the board of life that you can move, that you can be, that I do not have you.” And the world is right again.

I am grateful for my Purpose. I am charged with hyperlinked joy to my Higher Self when I am writing the love stories that emanate from my heart. My purpose is to open my mouth, my voice loud and throbbing with life, and speak the love in my heart, whether I am speaking to beloveds in my immediate world or those on my virtual horizon or those on the other end of a podium. I love every one of them…even those from whom I must walk away. I came to regale with laughter and dance, be it burlesque or belly dancing (my latest undertaking) or boody shakin’. I call them my three B’s of dance! It’s me, and I’m comfortable with all my parts. I am a delight, honey! Not only that but also I am here to travel the world, to experience the wonder of its people, their customs and lands, and share my smile and my generosity, and of course, receive the love and respect I bestow. Indeed, what is giving if you know not how to receive? And above all, I came to love and be loved.

What would your life be without passion? Think about it.

If you’re rarely or never passionate about anyone or anything, touch yourself. Are you living? Really thriving? Does anyone or anything ever move you to tears? Bow? Fight? Rise? Strive? Love? It may be time for you to love somebody.

My passion drives me to love deeper. To release judgment of myself and others, even when I’d like to think I’m above judging! That passion whispers to me to do those things that I am afraid to do first, to embrace everything, to see perfection in imperfection. To be grateful for a special poet who calls on the new day of my birth just to sing “Happy Birthday” and wish me 1,000 blessings! To write profusely, powerfully and promptly, as if my laptop will die tomorrow. To never pass up the opportunity to dance. And welcome more people in than the number I choose not to allow over the threshold of my heart.

Yes, it a new day, my 55th birthday! It’s 12:10 AM. Friday. I can hardly believe it!

Good morning, Beloved, I whisper to myself. I love you! Be fabulous this year, unapologetically. Call your twin, Claude Jr. No, on second thought, text him. We may not share the blessing of being nocturnal.

My heart is free this morning, this January 11th. I love me, and because I do, I love you, too!
Happy Birthday to me! Even if my Internet connection is yet out!

IN THE PHOTO, I GIVE YOU MY CLASSIC CLAUDIA POSE!
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A this time, Saturday, January 12, 2013, I am officially 55! MUAH

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