4.2018

Zion Nat'l Park, Columbine

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Rejuvenation at the Merced River

Four days in Yosemite–a marvelous treat. A time for savoring simple beauty; reveling in the warm sun and cool air; my heart filled with joy, in reverence of the new blooms and buds, the mating and nesting birds; and a wonderful gift of allowing my mind to quiet, to unplug, to breathe, to feel, to be.

Water brings to me a feeling of letting go, of liberation and rejuvenation. The Merced is a mighty river, wild and full this time of year, much of it moving swiftly and powerfully, a seething white water ribbon of unruliness. While I am indeed mesmerized by stunning force of this part of the river, I am drawn to the placid, glassy and calm flat water.  I sit quietly on a flat rock to evoke my favorite visualization: the metaphor of letting go. In the sitting and quieting, my heart opens to joy and gratitude as I contemplate the many aspects of richness that fill my day–love, learnings, givings, my work, connecting with others, nourishing food, comfortable home, taking care of myself… and, as it will, tougher feelings come up as well–hurt, anxiety, fear, anger… When these strong tougher feelings are clear to me, I “place” them on a leaf, ceremoniously giving them up and letting them go, then gently set the leaf on the water, watching it float away. I honor the feeling of lightness and expansiveness that floods into me then.

"After thirty years of eating healthy foods and participating in regular, vigorous exercise, I was astounded to discover I have Coronary Artery Disease. In March of 2010, I had two stents placed in my Left Anterior Descending Artery- this was big. I consulted Robin Mallery, RN, knowing she is a local expert on Cardiac Rehabilitation. I especially respected her lifestyle of nutrition and physical fitness. Robin’s reassurance that I was doing many things correctly, and her instructions on how to fine-tune my program to deal with this life-threatening disease, was invaluable. Robin’s exquisite grasp of balancing traditional medicine with diet, exercise, relaxation and fun has helped me through this medical crisis". --Maiya Gralia, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and cross-country ski instructor and coach

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