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I remember one night when I met a handsome stranger and said yes to having a drink with him.

It was a liberating moment- I followed my intuition and did precisely, exactly, perfectly what I wanted with wild abandon. Not in a self destructive, wanton way, but rather with calm acceptance of the present moment and for once, not worrying about the past or trying to control the future.

I said yes to him and yes to life.

Right now, I am floating on cloud nine. Though there are some minor administrative details to work out, I am moving to Paris. The city I love because I love it, because such wonderful things happened to me there and for some reason it just feels home to some part of my soul. It sounds like a clichy but hey, it is actually so ridiculously, laughably true. And yes, dreams do come true.

Maybe I will even share another moment or two with my handsome stranger, who didn’t stay a stranger for two long.

The quest back to Paris has been tough. I have doubted everything, especially myself. I lost hope. And despite my best efforts, I resigned myself, I surrendered to fate, though on some passive level I kept hoping and praying. I thought the journey back to Paris might just take longer than I expected and be a bit more roundabout. I realized that the journey I was on was not the one I originally thought I was taking, and I no longer wanted so much to go to the places I originally set out for. Paris was calling, and I did all I could to answer the call.

It wasn’t enough, or so it seemed.

And then, out of nowhere, from the least expected source, came a heartfelt conversation that lead to a unexpected career direction that lead to a referral that lead to an interview and here I am.

While the direct chain of events that lead me to this point seems to have nothing to do with all the heart ache and the dead ends and wrong turns I had pursued, ultimately I was prepared when the opportunity came. The voyage was far from in vain in terms of my career, or in my life, come what may with the handsome stranger and the continued friendship with the traveling companions.

It was worth it to see and do all that. Much as I gave up a lot to do so.

Every month when I pay my student loan bill, I’ll think, Yes, this is my life. And it is a beautiful life indeed, far beyond anything I could have imagined. No matter what I might think of the educational system or economy or circumstances over which I have no control, yes, I did the best I could with what I had, I stumbled and fell and made mistakes and lost hope. I gave it my all but I couldn’t wouldn’t always give it 110%. Because I didn’t have 110% to give. sometimes I gave it twenty or just an ironic grin or depressed sigh because that was what I had that day. I was very human along this voyage.  I was not always a swashbuckling hero. I was self indulgent and whiny and eating my feelings and leaving things to the last minute and depressed and calling my mom to say it was all a mistake.

But nothing is really a mistake.

And along the way, I just had to learn to say Yes. To focus on what is. To accept and love myself, unconditionally. Even when I look back and feel embarrassed about myself, and need to let go of shame. I’m not perfect, and that’s okay. And I’m never going to get there either, no danger of that. I can and will keep on being myself.

And that is ENOUGH.

So today, I am celebrating how happy I feel. I am celebrating the fact that some desire fulfilled really do bring satisfaction, however temporal and ephermal, this is a real deep feeling I have here. And it’s called gratitude. Not just for my recent Heaven sent success but also for the journey along the way. Even all the fast break candy bars and nights spent along along and embarrassing bitter meltdowns.

Yes, even that.

Today is the day I say yes to myself. To all my crazy plans and schemes, to living in the moment, and following my song, my very own song, and rejoicing that I have it, I have it , I HAVE IT!

Happy to be alive, happy to have existed.

Yes, God, I’m finally here.

 

Namaste,

MJ

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