NORMA JEAN: Be Yourself

Be yourself/No matter what they say...-- Sting, "Legal Alien"An e-mail:Falling in love begins the mechanism for expressing real love and feels just great in the beginning. We're all so brainwashed to believe that a connection with one special person will bring us happiness. A voice says, "If I can just and one person to focus my love on, and get the love from, all will be right with my world." This thinking misses the point. Opportunity to attract and express love happens every day. Still people demand to be "in love."Surrender is right, Norma Jean, as you say in "Open Heart, Soft Belly." Surrender your ideas about who is worthy of your love, about falling in love, about that one person making you happy. Allow the obstacles to love that you have erected to come tumbling down.Dear Cyberperson,I've been thinking about the fulfillment and potential for expanding concepts of love while living a singular life. Remaining single does not mean there's anything wrong with an individual--even those over the dreaded age of 40. Without a built-in partner or second parent, singles often evoke pity or inspire suspicion from the married set. Somehow, family and friends can make "single-and-still-looking" feel like purgatory; just talk to your mom ... .Actually, people without partners are forced to reach out and take more risks to connect with others, often keeping in better shape, taking classes, seminars, or using Personals as a way to meet new people. Oh, and for the record, single people generally have many opportunities to marry and often remain single by choice. Anyone fretting over being an "old maid" or "lone bachelor," it's horseshit, really. And so what if your activities appear a little haphazard and precarious to the status quo? Why, for me, this long weekend was chock full of human closeness; a cozy Alibi BBQ with deeply loved fellow worker bees, romantic nights with a man half my age, camping with my best gal pal in magical Ojo Caliente with our dogs and children, meeting Sting (yes) backstage, shaking his hand and sharing our love for yoga (what a thrill), celebrating three months nicotine-free, and laughing with my son's father and his beautiful girlfriend while the three of us shared the beauty of our child. How much love and surprise can one absorb in five short days! No, single isn't a dreaded state. I happen to glow in it's expansiveness. Forget about those nasty voices telling you how you fall short; they stink. Step fearlessly into life and learn from one another.Namaste,Norma Jean

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