What is the most precious gift we can receive?

While researching recently, I ran across this article written by a young woman who possessed a truly special gift. The gift of having received unconditional love. She writes:

Grandpa and Granddaughter share a unique connection.

“Two years ago I lost my grandfather. He’d been ill the last time I saw him and I knew it was coming. And yet, I was still not prepared for the depth of my grief. I had lost loved ones before, but while I had loved them, they weren’t him. He was special. He saw me.

If you know what it means to be seen, I don’t need to say anymore.

If you’ve never felt seen, let me explain what that feels like: It is the very best feeling; better than love, better than friendship. It’s looking into another’s eyes and seeing complete acceptance, acknowledgement, and the truest form of love.

And I got that from him. Every time he looked at me. Every conversation we had.

Every moment we shared together. And then he was gone. He moved on and I was left feeling/worrying that I would never know that kind of love again. That I would never be seen.” (Yule-Rosen)

That “complete acceptance, acknowledgement, and the truest form of love” she describes is what we all crave as human beings. The unconditional acceptance that says you are just fine just the way you are, imperfections and all. It’s an emotional embrace…….that transcends our psyche into the very depths of our spirit, and fuels it, fanning it into a bright flame that lights the space surrounding it. Yet, how many of us, had a far different experience with the people who we spent most of our time with growing up?

When we extend this type of acceptance and true acknowledgement, we play a part in making our world a better place. Why? Because the better people feel about themselves, the more their self-esteem develops. When people have healthy self-esteem, they treat others better. Communities and societies function better. Everyone wins!!

Ghandi was quoted as saying: “Relationships are based on four principles: respect, understanding, acceptance and appreciation.”

Today, with the people who come across your path, practice unconditional acceptance and love. It IS a conscious choice, this business of loving people. Even the people who are difficult to love, that we have “issues” with, can be extended love when we separate who they are from their behavior. We don’t have to like or agree with what they have done that upsets us, but we can CHOOSE to love them as human beings anyway. Their VALUE as a human being is separate from the behavior they may be, in our opinion, foolishly or hurtfully choosing.

If we VALUE others, then we do our utmost to not mistreat them. It results in the world becoming a better place simply because we chose to extend love. Change your world today…..one person at a time!

Sources cited: Yule-Rosen, M. “Are You Hiding Yourself in Fear of Being Fully Seen?” Tiny Buddha – Simple Wisdom for Complex Lives. Accessed August 16, 2017 URL: https://tinybuddha.com/blog/are-you-hiding-yourself-in-fear-of-being-fully-seen/

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Who Was the Most Exciting Woman He Ever Met?

actress, acting, silent films, 20's, 30's, mexican, mexican-american, women's empowerment,
1933 Dolores del Rio, cross cultural actress of the Golden Era screen age

Orson Welles, the late great American actor, writer, director and producer in theatre, radio and film during the 20th century was quoted as saying, “Dolores del Rio was the most exciting woman he had ever met.” Who is Dolores del Rio? And why did she garner that kind of reaction? Dolores del Rio is known as the first Mexican born Hollywood movie star with international audience appeal back in the glamour film days of the 1920s and 30s.

She and her husband became acquainted with producer/director Edwin Carewe and moved to Los Angeles to pursue film careers, her as an actress and her husband as a screenwriter. Her first film, a silent movie, came out in 1925 and she became known from its success as “the female Rudolph Valentino.” Crossing over into sound motion pictures in 1928, with notably less success, she returned to Mexico in 1942 where she was offered a lead in the 1943 film Flor Silvestre skyrocketing her to becoming the most famous movie star in Mexico and filming in Spanish for the first time. Her collaboration with the movie’s director Emilio Fernandez and his team created what has been referred to as the Golden Era of Mexican Cinema in the mid-40s. Her career included not only film, but theater and television as well. She returned to Hollywood in 1960 and worked in various projects until her last screen appearance in 1978. Her iconic look has earned her almost mythical status as a Latin American woman said to be representative of the prototypical Mexican beauty to the rest of the world.

Why did she earn the distinction of being “the most exciting woman [Welles] ever met?” I believe it was due to a couple different things. First, it had to do with audacity…boldness…the willingness to step out and boldly go (cue the Star Trek music) where no woman has gone before! She was a maverick in her day. She is known for saying she worked very hard at learning English well enough to stay competitive when the talkies came around. She also did theater later in her career as a type of discipline and also felt that she had an enormous responsibility to use her power to influence the public in beneficial ways.

Secondly, I believe the quality that so endeared her to Welles was her liveliness and charisma. She claimed her secret of youth as being “to work, keep busy, and never be bored.” She was involved in life, doing work she enjoyed, that helped her grow and expand her skill set. She also believed in taking care of herself.

Her self-care routine included sleeping 9 hours a night, eating regular meals (whatever she liked in moderation), enjoying small portions of dessert, and taking short naps during the day whenever possible. She even had a daily “beauty rule” where she laid completely flat on the floor for 20 minutes each day – without interruption – and “let go,” relaxing herself progressively from the toes up. She credited her higher energy levels to this practice.

She didn’t believe in dieting, said it damaged a woman’s appearance and health. She wore clothing that reflected her personality such as, in the evening, wearing a cocktail hat that included a flirty nose veil, because not only did it “suit her,” but men loved it! She cautioned women to take care of their inner spiritual beauty, that  thoughts and deeds reflect in our faces and affect our outer beauty. She also claimed that cosmetic creams are a waste if we’re not taking care of our health.

Accolades to Del Rio for being one of the icons paving the way for professional career women with her example.  I hope, dear reader,  that you are in touch with that “alive” part of yourself, the true you, and that you have a self-care routine that replenishes and nurtures you from the inside out. Be a woman whose personality is expressed through her life each day, and make sure you are including in that daily life some things that make YOU an exciting woman!

Sources Cited:

IMDb. Biography. Dolores Del Rio. Accessed August 3, 2017. URL: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0003123/bio?ref_=nm_ov_bio_sm

Wikipedia. Dolores del Rio. Accessed August 3, 2017. URL: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolores_del_R%C3%ADo

Photo Challenge: Satisfaction

This week’s photo challenge was to post a photo of something that brings me satisfaction. via Photo Challenge: Satisfaction

music, women, empowerment, singing, vocalist, musician, yucca valley, kokopelli's, creativity, fun
Living out loud at Kokopelli’s Cantini during karaoke

For some people, music is an enjoyable thing and many like to collect CDs and build playlists to enjoy. For me, MUSIC is a need. The uplifting quality of music is something that never fails to give me energy, reboot me when I’m down, or inspire me to reach higher. There is something to the vibratory quality of music that resonates deep within my body, right down to the cellular level. If you don’t believe me, some of you may be familiar with that pounding quality of base speakers in the trunk of a souped-up muscle car. The sound actually hurts if the car is passing close enough. Those vibrations can have a positive effect as well. It’s that positive effect that brings me tremendous satisfaction when I sing. It’s the joy that comes from being a storyteller in song for 4 minutes, moving an audience, entertaining, evoking emotion.

It’s fitting that in the above photo, I was singing Kiki Dee’s “I Got The Music In Me.” It’s my current “theme song for life” and always picks me up when I listen to it.

Aahhhh…..sweet satisfaction!