I just came across an article from CNN on Brazil’s health crisis that just stirred a lot of emotions in me. The very first paragraph of an important session named “The Growing Perfect Storm” reads:
The Covid-19 crisis in Brazil has never been worse. Nearly every Brazilian state has an ICU occupancy of 80% or higher, according to a CNN analysis of state data. As of Friday, 16 of 26 states were at or above 90%, meaning those health systems have collapsed or are at imminent risk of doing so.
That’s the country where I grew up — where I…
“Don’t you wish you had a sibling?” I was asked many times as a child.
I wasn’t sure why people would ask me that question, to which I would promptly respond, “I’m not sure. I don’t think so.”
I didn’t know why having a sibling would make that much of a difference in my life. I had a loving family. I had cousins who were like siblings to me. Why would I want to change any of that?
Growing up with love and attention from my loving parents seemed to be more than enough. …
Toby put the water rose down and took a deep breath as he celebrated the end of his simple task. Violet’s marigolds didn’t need that much water after all or they would turn mushy and brownish the next day.
For the past twenty-five years, Toby had been watering his neighbor’s garden without expecting anything in return. He would also tease Violet about her name.
“How come you are named after a flower and there is no violet here?”
Violet would always giggle and thank her sweet old neighbor. …
I have been a spiritual seeker for decades. I have found books that inspired me, made me cry, made me angry. Books that have made me question the nature of reality and even myself.
One of the spiritual book gems I’ve read recently was a classic: “The Untethered Soul” by Michael A. Singer. Besides teaching you how to stop identifying with the monkey mind and play the role of the observer, the author gives us one of the most powerful lessons in one of the last few chapters of the book: a lesson on the brevity of life.
I’ve always wondered what living without worries and fears would feel like. I’ve always envied those who only worry when imminent danger is approaching, or in those moments when they need to act to protect themselves.
Part of me has always had worry or fear as a companion, and sadly it’s not something you can simply change easily. You can’t tell yourself to stop feeling emotions or thinking. The mind never listens to you, and it feels like that is its job to protect you. …
Nathan tried his best to warm up the cabin. He’d spent the last three days gathering logs in the backyard. He also made sure the place was secure. It took him a few days to wrap the wires around the property and to hang cans filled with dried beans. This way he would make sure if they came.
Because eventually, they would come. His best friend John, who was in the military, made sure he knew about that.
John had shown up at Nathan’s place downtown two weeks ago. His weary eyes told Nathan that his friend knew too much…
Clay carries his duffel bag on his way to the apartment. He’s so proud of his achievement — two hundred pounds lifted in a few seconds.
As Clay heads to the elevator, he can’t help it but hear the commotion coming from the stairs. Luigi, the little boy who lives next door, talks to his grandma.
“Who’s going to take care of us?” Luigi asks. Tears go down his face.
Clay notices the body being carried down by the paramedics. Luigi’s sick father finally passed away from cancer.
Clay quickly enters the elevator. …
I first came to the United States in June of 2008. I had left Brazil, my home for the past twenty-six years, with two hundred dollars in my pocket and one suitcase full of dreams. I had come to work as an au pair through an exchange program. It was a must-need experience for me because I was an English teacher in Brazil, and the whole “living abroad” experience would supposedly open doors for me professionally.
I was young. I spoke three languages. The future looked bright and promising for a passionate and young immigrant in America. I didn’t know…
How many times have you told yourself, “Just stop thinking!”
And just like that, your mind will not listen to you. Sometimes you may feel as if your mind is trying to control you and manipulate you so you can fall into old patterns of behavior and self-sabotage. Its incessant chattering can be so annoying and exhausting that you’ll end up yelling at yourself for even listening to it.
Arguing with your mind is tiresome and overwhelming, and there is no amount of talking back you can do that will free you from this toxic saga.
I’ve never had the…