Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Thursday, July 9, 2020

joy

Gosh, I keep meaning to blog but, big sigh, time just slips away. Which is weird because during the pandemic, I really can't go anywhere or do much outside the home. I'm keeping busy by learning to play the piano via online lessons. And reading. Lots. And doing 1000 piece jigsaw puzzles. Lots. And one day a week I get to have my twin 2 1/2 year old grandchildren for the day and a sleepover.

For the last year or so, for oh so many reasons, I was unable to do lots of the activities that filled my heart with joy  - singing, dancing, and writing. But I've done some healing work and suddenly I find myself singing and dancing again, if only in my own living room all alone. One of the insights that came from my healing work is that I am the source of my own joy. I've always looked to others to give me something I thought I needed, but I know now I am whole and complete just the way I am. It has freed me up to express that joy in more ways than just with my precious grandbabies.

May your days and nights be filled with joy.
Blessings
Karen

Sunday, May 24, 2020

hello again

Hello again. It's been such a long time since I connected here and I've missed visiting all of you.Part of the reason is technology. I have a mac and use Safari and because of that, I can't comment on other blogs unless I switch browsers so I just gave up. But I realized I've missed blogging and connecting with y'all in this way, so now I'm using google chrome for blogging to see how that works.

To quickly catch you all up, I am now living in Baltimore, MD to be near by two and a half year old twin grand babies. I'm in heaven being so close and being able to see them frequently. They have sleepovers at our house once a week and my heart is filled with joy. I'm grateful I was here when the pandemic hit because if I had been in New Mexico and unable to see them, I know I wouldn't have been able to cope as well with being quarantined.

I was hoping to begin writing again, but for some reason my brain doesn't want to work in that way. I am learning to play piano using chords (via youtube) and doing water colors on pre-drawn paper to feed my creativity needs.

Please share how you've been coping with the virus and all its ramifications to our lives.

Blessings,
Karen

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Insecure Writer's Support Group - September

Hello bloggyland,
Welcome to IWSG, the brainchild of Alex Cavanaughwww.alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com. Please check Alex's blog for all the details on how to participate.

Well, I can't believe it's September and summer's almost over. It has been an intense one for me. My singing partner of eight years found something else her heart wants to do, so she left Sugartime. The good news is that one of the original Sugartime gals from 10 years ago has moved back to Albuquerque and is willing and able to do Sugartime with me, so I don't have to stop doing what I love. But it's very intense trying to bring her up to speed with song lyrics, choreography and just plain performing. It's going to be wonderful, but since we have such a short window of time to get our act together, so to speak, it's challenging.

That is taking all my time and energy, so I haven't worked on my novel at all. I'm hoping this month to find a balance between Sugartime and writing. I know this project is something I want and need to do. An idea that hasn't left me for 30 something years is not something I want to ignore.

On a personal note, my twin grand babies are almost two and as I've said before, my heart has been totally kidnapped by these two beings. I am absolutely besotted. Sorry, but I'm not allowed to post pics of them (sigh!).

Tell me what's happening in your world, writing or otherwise.

Blessings,
Karen

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Insecure Writer's Support Group - August - Research research research

Hello bloggyland,
Whew! So much happening in my life, but what is relevant here is that I am researching the novel whose idea was planted in my brain some 35 years ago. See...it's never too late. I never could have written this book then -- I'm not sure I can now -- but I'm going to enjoy the process of getting it out of my head and down on paper.
So, what's happening with all of you?
Blessings,
Karen

Friday, June 7, 2019

help - i can't comment on other blogs

Hi
I've been away from blogging for quite awhile and now that I'm trying to get back into it I can't comment on other blogs. A blogging friend told me the problem might be my web browser (Safari) but I don't know what to do about it - that works for me because I have a Mac. Any thoughts, ideas, suggestions.
Blessings
Karen

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Insecure Writer's Support Group - June

Wow - I can't remember the last time I wrote a post for this group. Thank you, Alex, for not removing me while I took a hiatus from this and well, from writing altogether. Since my grand babies were born 1 1/2 years ago, I'm guessing that's how long it's been. Sigh!

Turning 70 was a huge transition for me emotionally and psychologically. One of the biggest things to come out of that transition is that I miss writing - terribly. It's so much a part of who I am. That missing part was filled with caring for the twins, but now that they live on the other side of the country from me and I only see them every few months, that missing part is much more prevalent.

So, I've decided to begin again. There are three projects that are calling to me. One is to write a narrative to go along with a picture book of my life, including what little information I have about my parent's parents. The second is to write personal essays. For now, I will probably just post them here on my blog. If I begin to think about publishing, I get overwhelmed and won't even want to write. The third is to complete a novel that only has the first chapter (written over 25 years ago). Two friends found that chapter and both asked "What is this and where's the rest of it?" The idea hasn't left me so I figure it's asking to be written as well.

My intention is to just have fun writing and to make it a kind of spiritual practice every day, like Natalie Goldberg, one of my favorite writing teachers, talks about in "Thunder and Lightning."
So, wish me luck my dear writing buddies. We're off...

Blessings
Karen

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Music Magic on the Mountaineer

Well, it's a month and a half after my big 70th birthday bash. The party was a smash, and of course, just like life, it didn't go exactly as planned. I had laryngitis and couldn't really sing, but that turned out to be a gift. Because I couldn't sing I wasn't afraid to sing so I had more fun up on stage than ever before. And I got to pretend to be Ginger Rogers and dance with my tap dance teacher, Kevin, who is my Fred Astaire. Plus, my twin grand babies were there and well, you get the idea. The day was very very special.

But the title of this blog post is "Music Magic on the Mountaineer" so I want to tell you what happened on my recent vacation to Canada. When you book a trip on the Rocky Mountaineer, you are assigned seats in a certain car and for the three days you are traveling through the magnificent Canadian Rockies, you keep those same seats in the same car with the same people. If you’re lucky, there are some nice ones you enjoy talking with and no obnoxious, loud ones who make the trip unpleasant. On this recent trip I was luckier than that. A man came onboard with a guitar - someone close to my age who loves to sing as much as I do and who grew up with the same music I did. On day one of our trip, he began playing and I walked back and stood by his seat singing along. In front of us were a couple from Australia, joining their voices with ours. To the right were some folks from England, also singing along. And down about four rows was a family from Shanghai China. Only the father spoke English. One younger Chinese girl, perhaps late teens or twenties, began taking pictures of us singing. But when we started singing an Elvis song, she started singing along with us. She giggled shyly, but just kept taking our picture and singing. 

In that magical moment, I was astounded that people from such diverse countries and cultures would know the same songs and, in the case of the Chinese girl, even sing in a language she doesn’t know. I had no idea that American music was so universally known around the world. And it made me think that music connects us in ways nothing else that I’m aware of does. For those few moments of song, there were no religious or cultural or political differences. We were all simply feeling the joy of music through singing together. It made me wonder why we focus so much on our differences rather than trying to find ways to connect with one another.

Blessings,
Karen