- a mom with one wonderful daughter who is my heart,
- a Nana with two sparkling granddaughters, 10 and 7, who light up my life
- a mother-in-law with a great son-in-law,
- a daughter (my Dad is alive and will be 78 on Tuesday; Mom crossed over in 1990 and we all miss her incredible personality and abundant love),
- a sister with two amazing brothers; when we're together, the conversation and laughter is non-stop; I love them both so much! I have a sister-in-law who is wonderful and generous and so good and ever-loving to my brother.
- a friend with deep, close relationships with people who have walked into my life and share my journey with their love and support
- a cousin and niece to a wonderfully connected family; with each passing year, I treasure my relationships with my cousins more and more
Those are some of the people in my life. I also have an ex-sister-in-law who I love very much; she is like a younger sister to me.
I play piano; not really well and I can't play by ear, but I sightread passably well and I love to sit and play my favorites with all the windows open and the ocean breeze caressing my skin as it flows through my small townhome. My neighbor, Steve, will sometimes yell across the fence "Play some more Elton John!"
I studied ballet for about 10 years and I am passionate about dance. When my daughter was growing up, I bought tickets for the ballet season each year at our performing arts center; now I go with one of my treasured friends. We see dancers from companies around the world, sip champagne at intermission and people-watch the Russian balletomanes when the Russian dance companies perform. The Russians come dressed in fur coats and smoke cigarettes at intermission, their Russian words filling the air along with their smoke.
I've also studied ballroom dance and salsa, performing in two amateur salsa groups. After one performance, our director called me back onstage and introduced me to everyone as a grandmother! Wild applause - I don't know whether for my dancing or for being brave enough to get up there with a group of 20-somethings!
I currently study yoga, the physical side as well as the philosophical/spiritual side. Yoga has been an incredible experience for me in terms of managing some health issues. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 1995 and it's been a journey to learn how others deal with the constant pain and to find ways that I can manage it. Last year, I was diagnosed with spondylolisthesis and transitional vertebrae, which means I have some vertebrae that have shifted forward out of alignment with the spinal column and press on the spinal nerves, and other vertebrae that fused together, probably as a baby, which could explain the scoliosis that I have. The doctors mentioned extensive spinal surgery to address the problems, but I just increased my yoga practice and went for more aggressive, twice-weekly chiropractic care which has made a huge difference in my mobility and pain levels. No knives for this girl! I love my yoga and feel incredible after 90 minutes of sweating and working and getting in touch with where my body is each day. I hope that what works for me can also help others who have pain and health issues.
... to be continued ...