This week I want to do a bit of a recap: to bring you up to date with where I am now, to share your comments and suggestions, and to reflect on what I’m feeling.

My Liver

I have an appointment to see a Providence liver specialist the end of May. This is the one I scheduled last fall. As far as my efforts to get seen sooner by other medical facilities, OHSU still hasn’t gotten back to me. But I have an appointment with the University of Iowa. And so I wait.

And what’s my mindset around this? I’ve decided to act as if what’s going on with my liver is hereditary, to continue to eat good food, hang out with friends and get exercise.

My Eyes

My eyes are almost 100% recovered. 

Here’s the Before and After photos

L – Before; R – 5 weeks post op


Now let’s talk about my husband’s upcoming retirement.

When my husband submitted  his letter of resignation last week, news spread to the executive team, and one of them stopped by his desk to ask if he’d won the lottery ticket. Oregon hasn’t had a Powerball jackpot winner since 2018, but a $1.3 billion ticket — the largest in state history — was sold in NE Portland. And the winner was still a mystery. My husband laughed and said he hadn’t, even though it feels like it.

This reminds me that one way I’m finding to decide what I want to do next is to pretend that we did win the lottery. What would my life look like? How would I spend my time? How many of those things can I incorporate now?

One question we’re hearing on repeat is, “What will he do in retirement?” which has me thinking that no matter what it looks like his retirement won’t look like my Grandpa Paul’s did back in the day. Every week when we visited him and Grandma Virginia my grandfather was parked in front of the TV. 

Looking back what retirement meant for a lot of people was not only not working but not doing much of anything. I asked my husband what he remembered about folks who were retired. He responded, and I quote, “It was a lot more about nothing than something.”  I guess there’s nothing wrong with that if that’s what you want. I think it’s too early for my husband to answer the question for himself, but I’m pretty sure it won’t be that. 

He’s already decided that the way things have always been done–retiring at 65, for example–isn’t set in stone. He’s already decided that Luxury, for him, is having time freedom.

I want to share some of the feedback I’ve received. 

When I first dropped the podcast it was a bit of a soft launch. O.K. A very soft launch. I didn’t tell anyone.And I kind of hoped no one would find it, because that made it easier to keep going when I was still finding my footing. But one of my favorite people found it anyway, and aftr listening to the first episode said, I think this will resonate with a lot of people. And by a lot of people I mean me.”

The TikTok community, as expected, has rallied around me. Here are some of the comments:

“You are a connector. You are an explorer. Remain curious and open to the possibilities of change. You’ve got this. Such a good point. The in between is touch. Been there several times in my life. Keep going. The messy middle…so good and I’m with you. 

Someone suggested my Act Four is “starting a political consulting company with my favorite policy wonk.” I’ve thought about that. 

Another friend wrote, “I found your podcast yesterday. I have listened to it twice. So much of it resonates with me. I think you might be my new therapist.”

One of the best surprises was to see a comment from my friend Susan Clark. Here’s what she said: What a thrill to hear you mention my name in your podcast! It’s a testament to your success patterns that we created and have maintained a friendship for so many years after only three days together. How often does that happen? You are such a magnetic force and I can hardly wait to see where you choose to manifest greatness next. BTW my current path is “to lead an easy-button life full of meaning and purpose.” Feel free to try that one on and see where it takes you.” I think I will!

So how am I feeling, three months into this venture? I think it can be best described by me telling you about my Saturday, because it was a summary of what I’m trying to do this year: show up with an open heart and see what happens. We’d decided Friday night to drive to the Coast and spend the day there on Saturday. It’s about an hour and a half drive. Easy peasy. We normally stop for an easy hike along the way, walk on the beach when we get there, stop for lunch and then drive home. So that was the loose plan.

Saturday morning I glanced at my phone as my husband was getting out of the shower to see a text from a political campaign I’m supporting asking if we’d like to be extras in a video they were shooting in Oregon City. I looked at the clock and saw we had just enough time to get there by 9:00 a.m. So we went. And we had a blast.

Oregon City wasn’t exactly on our way to the Coast, so we asked ourselves, Do we still want to go to the Coast. We did. What else do we want to do? Eat at Word of Mouth Bistro in Salem, because it’s delicious. And so we did. Then we realized that some dear friends we haven’t seen in several years were now on our direct path to the Coast, so we stopped and visited them for an hour, before heading to the Coast.

There’s nothing quite like the ocean to give me perspective of my place in the world. There’s something also calming and energizing about it. It’s my happy place. 

Driving home in our Prius we made another discovery. We decided we’re no longer up for the cross-country drive to the Midwest we’d be talking about. A round-trip drive to the Coast, including detours, was about our limit. And we’re fine with that. Thank goodness we figured that out before hopping in the car and heading East!

I feel like Saturday was the first real test of a whole day of opening myself to the day’s possibilities. And saying “Yes” to the things that excited me. And it felt great. And also a little uncomfortable. But that’s only because I’m not accustomed to plans and schedules. 

I was recently reminded that back in the day when I needed to refresh my wardrobe, I’d schedule some time with Miranda, a young stylist at Nordstrom. I would arrive to find an entire changing room filled with clothes, most of which I wouldn’t have pulled for myself in a thousand years. But I knew had great taste, and she understood who I was and how I wanted to present myself to the world. So I was open to the possibility that what she pulled for me could be better than I could imagine. And it always was. 

So I’ve decided to approach the next three months with the mindset of visiting Miranda at Nordstrom. That what I encounter and experience is going to be so much better than what I could even think to ask for. 




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