How Not To Fight

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Overcoming Ourselves, Parenting and Family Relations

Why I fight. 

  1. Still brooding over last month’s mother-in-law innocent child-rearing comment. Get it out!
  2. Too-sterile, twice-breathed air of co-habitated space driving me crazy. Create drama!
  3. Far too long since intense sweat-panting, moaning sex. Make-up sex is a remote option. Go for it!
  4. Bad attention is better than no attention, and I can’t breathe, remember? Throw something hard!
  5. My fantasy body, lover, and life are a nose-diving joke. Triumph at least in this!

Pitiful, but true- fighting was once of my all-time favorite pastime.

Over-slept stumbled through the door, mumbling, “I’m, uh, gonna, drink my coffee outside,” until two and a half hours later when he shows up again, grinning. Not what we agreed upon. We were going do this with our children, with both parents, here, involved; and he conveniently gets lost. Lucky me.

Alone In A Hotel Room- Putting Together Who I Am After Vippasana

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Overcoming Ourselves, Vipassana Meditation

So, day 4 alone, in a hotel room, four hours south of my family in Siem Reap, Cambodia. I just made that up, you know. I totally shot that out of nowhere. I have no idea if I’m north, east, west, or southwest of them; but in the greater scheme of things I won’t lose much sleep over. I am far, far away; and contemplative. I wanted to say “happy about it” or “loving it” or “estastic” , and I am all of those things, but I am mostly thoughtful. I love my family so much, so much, so much; and have decided that I simply will not run away from them anymore.

I don’t run away, like go off for weeks on end all the time. This is the sixth time in my life as a mom (almost 11 years) that I’ve gone off for more than a few hours or a night. What I mean is that I feel like I am not present, really present, even though I adore, admire and love them to death. I’m there but I’m also running full-speed in my head, tensely, with brow furrowed, somewhere. Something to do, organize, think about, do, do, do. And so, my beloved (and I can’t say enough how cool this guy is. Go buy one today! They are in limited supply!); yes, where was I, my beloved has said stay as long as you like. When you are ready, come home.

Cuz You Haven’t Seen Me Shower Yet- The Great Neutralizer (Video)

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Vipassana Meditation

I know! We’re starting a post with a video of me showering. Ok, so now I’ve officially gone too far. You may have seen us in our nomadic family travel blog talk about everything inappropriate there could be. Here’s the list I copy and pasted for you:

and my newest, and most favorite (because it is full of my Vippasana reflections)-  Just A Butt In The Wind. But showering, we haven’t done yet.

And how is this spiritual? In so many ways, mostly because I am here, just a skin-bound soul, ma-tuk. “Ma” in Khmer means ‘to put or pour’ and “Tuk” means ‘water’. And so, shower for them means, ‘to pour water’ which makes much more sense than all of our fancy piping, no? So, enjoy the well shower, just me and my 7o closest Khmer friends, all nearly naked, and remarkably similar, in this greatest of all neutralizers.

Yes, I’d love to think what you think of my shower. Yeah, I did miss my left arm pit, and my back, but I was nervous in front of the shower. 🙂 Speaketh… or stay silent-th…. Gabi

The Last Meditation- When A Person Humbly Devotes Himself To Serving Others

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Vipassana Meditation


And she bowed. She did. She bowed to every single one of us.

This is it, the last meditation, and we’re already talking again, so the intensity of it all has gone down. I’m not allowed to record in the hall, nor to talk in the parameter of the meditation hall, though we’ve resumed eye contact and communication again.And so, I just bolted out of my cushion when the last chantings stopped, I bowed, and turned on the camera.

You can see the red blotchiness of my face, a new sign of things being released in me from the vippasana (since, gone) and the tiredness of that 6-am-been-awake-for-two-hours-but-so-grateful look about me. But what is far more significant is what is going on behind me: our manager is bowing to each participant.

I Can Never Repay My Debt- Vippasana (Battambang, Cambodia)

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Vipassana Meditation

I am your servant. You are the master. Please, master, tell me how it is I can serve you best. This is my job, to serve you.

That’s what she said to me. Seriously.  Those exact words.

I’ve donated money for this and that cause before, and always felt good about it. And even if it was to the guy on the street, who I am pretty sure went out and bought more alcohol with it, I figure it is my job to give it lovingly and his job to figure out how to spend it. We each have our end of the deal. Each his own responsibilities.

And then there was that emergency center in Houston where I arranged literally hundred of volunteers and thousands of donations (goods and monies) which I later learned was not all necessarily distributed the way we thought it would be. But, I release that, all of that. I gave, and empowered others to, and what became of it, the end result surely brought more good to others, whichever way it wandered.

But here, God I feel so awakened, so brilliant, so grateful for the care and service given to me, all in the loving hands of volunteers.

When The Silence Breaks- Speaking After 10 Day Vippasana Silence (Battambang, Cambodia)

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Vipassana Meditation

towards enlightenment, one step at a time

I’m out and I’m alive. I was scared of drowning, and I did. So, I happily babble cuz damn, it’s hard when you don’t speak for ten days! Oh my God, it’s hard. And interestingly, an hour after the silence broke, I realized that a- I was late for everything b- I lost my shoes, water bottle, and room key, c- I couldn’t stop talking, and d- I had the hugest headache. Unreal the chaos and disorder that enters your life when you start talking and interacting with others.

Being alone, within myself, with zero eye contact with other human beings, with no words being spoken, was a great honor. It was a level of peace and calm, and a safe haven for oceans of pain to come up to the surface and be washed (or at least lovingly caressed). This experience was life-changing, and officially the best ten days of my spiritual life. So, here is me, babbling, joyfully, as I show you the 80 plus wonderful souls I did my first Vippasana with, and what the inside of this world looks like.

A Mom Who Longs To Be

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Overcoming Ourselves, Vipassana Meditation

I went to the Vippasana course, and I came here, alone in this hotel room, to figure it out. The Buddha sat under the Bondhi Tree and said with great intent, “I will not move a muscle. May my bones break, may the blood flow out of my body. I will not move from under this tree until I reach Enlightenment.” Damn, I love a strong-willed man. Call me Buddhalala will you. I will sit here in this room. Alone in this room, for as long as it takes, until I walk out enlightened. Not fully enlightened, arahant in nirvana; just mundane enlightened to my own life. Just my own little, Earthly everyday life.

I’ve checked myself out of one life-changing, beyond-comprehensible Vippasana silent retreat and into a hostel, alone, in a room to think, to figure it out. What does that mean to me?

To go within, and rethink my life. Who I am, what I want, how I want my daily life to be a testament of what is precious to me. What are my priorities, who do I want to see in the mirror? What do I want to give to my children? Not forever, for now. For the next week, and month and two months, what are my very next, wise, loving steps as a mother?   In a month, in a year, in a lifetime, what did I do to live in my highest light, in my highest potential, in my highest joy? And if I am not there (I’m not), what will get me there?

Anatta- Releasing the “Me, Me, Me” Drama Story

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Overcoming Ourselves

A Little Gift to You- The Four Noble Truths

Written by Gabi on . Posted in Buddhism

light and inspiration for the soul

I love sharing. Unless, it’s one of the first bites of my food, chocolate, men, a long-awaited ice cream (food, I know, but it deserves its own category), my lap, books (that you return smeared and water-logged), money, or my laptop.

Ok, so I take that back. I’m self-centered, and don’t really love sharing all that much. Not ‘love’, not ‘like’, but ‘can’. Yes, “I can share, when I want to, and it has no ill consequences on me, and does not take away from my own satisfaction of the agreed upon shared item.”

But, knowledge I like sharing, and a lot. Spiritual knowledge, ways to improve our lives, light unto our souls, inspirational empowerment, new self-help insightful life-changing ideas; I LOVE SHARING. And so, I’ve a little gift for you. It’s actually four pictures that I think sums up some really good information. It’s four pictures that I’m made, for you, and I hope can remind you of four truths that can be at the core of changing everything.

The more we surround ourselves with inspirational information and light, the more it seeps into our souls, and becomes who we are. And so, The Four Noble Truths, in pictures…. Enjoy!