Tuesday, May 26, 2009


I BELIEVE...........................

I really like this version of this song. And the video is well done. I think so , anyways.

As I wrestle with the effects of my silence as of late - it's not an all together 'feel good' outcome. The struggle being not about my silence but the perception of another as to why. I know, I know I have to let that go, knowing my intent was kind, and that beneath the silence is love. Even that is a concept that is far from reach for her - she only knows that my silence is different - after 10 years and much wrestling I knew I could not be the one with whom she processed. The lines crossed, and have been crossed for a while - I just became good at juggling and dancing across them. The latest experiences - some directly happening to me were so out of step that I could not juggle and dance anymore. Dual relationships, by design, create such a quandary - first and for years we were friends and equals, and for as many years after and now she is in a position of power - a style of management that I disagree with completely. I have been able to side step the style and still revel in the friendship. I can no longer do that so I chose the friendship and removed myself from being a listener and processor around any management issues. This silence did not go well - the events I experienced personally, through others and an overall style of blame, labels, accusations and "red-pencil" mentality in which she is a strong presence and my being privy to the dynamic became way bigger than my ability to support her in any way. We disagree completely on approach and style and opinions and what is fair, just and right in managing staff. I decided to not say anything and insist she not tell me anything either. All the lines between friend and manager were crossed and I don't even know any more where one role begins and the other ends. Part of me is grieving because I don't know if I can separate her from manager knowing what I know and then be able to trust her in friendship.
And so I have to believe that this too shall pass. I have to stand firm in my silence because beneath the silence is love. Can we have a conversation where I am truthful? Who would I be talking to if we did - manager or friend? I don't know the answer to that and maybe I never will. Right now there is no separating the two roles and that re-enforces my silence. I thought I was more able that I am to maintain both roles - and for a while I was, we both were, that is no longer the case, I believe.

Love Gail

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I love Simon and Garfunkel and although this song, "Sounds of Silence' speaks to a more global happening, so too, it is intimate -

And so I have come to realize that in some very detailed and time invested areas of my life that I have surrendered to a place of 'silent witness'. It has been a long history of loud protest, letters for change, joining forces, interventions, passionate efforts, loving advice, warnings, wisdom shared, hope, fear, courage and justice and freedoms pursued. It is so clear now that there is nothing left to say or do - it has all been said and all been done. There is both relief and grief in this surrender.

Silent witness allows me to simply "be". I am the change I have fought for, the witness for kindness, love, justice and freedom. Not in any grand way, please. Quite the opposite, I am humble and quiet as I relax in the stillness. As I move through the transition I am empowered by the quiet, by my silence..........This is not to say that what I actively advocated for is still not worth the fight - rather I have fought for and against with all that I have and it is time now to stop, and give silent witness only by how I live my life - the unspoken messages of hope, the kindness of smiles and welcome - a nod of understanding and validation through gentle hugs. As I maintain my own strength and humility, peace and love of all that surrounds me other's are free to find their own way, perhaps to my door, perhaps not - it is not up to me. what is up to me is how I live, work, parent, love, believe, and if some are drawn to that I am open, if not, I am still open.

I saw her today. Brief as it was. I hugged her and told her I loved her. She said she loved me too. She is in trouble on many levels. I have fought on every one of those levels for her and her son and now it is time to stop - and be silent. And this silent voice of witness will speak for me because there is nothing more to do or say.

I have fought for change at my work for people to 'listen' and for all to have a voice. There is no more to ask for, fight for, risk my job for. I have been a loud voice for a long time - now I am silent and might I add this is very different than being silenced. It is time for silent witness - to simply contiune to "be" the change I actively pursued - and to do so silently. It is very penetrating and powerful -

And so in these two strong areas of my life, as a Mom and an employee I am silent now. Ahhhh, such freedom in that. At work? All that I have experienced as unjust and fought to change is still unjust. I have said all there is to say in every forum available - and now there is nothing left to say or do except continue to be the change I fought for. As a parent? I have advised, warned, begged, cried, lost control and even ignored. Not any more. I will "be" open, a listener, an open door, a safe haven, peaceful and quiet - ready to embrace and share.

And So I ask you my friends - is silent witness the answer? Is it what we arrive at after the long fight? Perhaps where we should start? Something to ponder.



Monday, May 11, 2009

Matters of The Heart

Mother's Day! A beautiful celebration of Mom, my Sis, and me. That's me and Mom to the left, and my Sis, Mom and me above. It was a lovely, lovely day. I gave my Mom a gardenia corsage. Gardenias are her favorite flower. Years ago, in the 40's, she and my Dad went to New York City often. Every time, he bought her a gardenia corsage from a street vendor for just 50 cents!. Such a lovely memory. I told her she should have a corsage to wear every day. She is truly one of my most precious gifts. And my sister, she is older. :-) She is my best friend in the world. I gave her three large long stemmed sun flowers. It is tradition for six years now. Each sun flower represents one of her three amazing sons. Her oldest son, and my Godson, died an untimely death six years ago. This tragic loss bonded us in ways I never knew were possible. I didn't know where her grief ended and mine began. Every night since, I tell her, "remember Sis, I sleep right by the phone". She also just lost her husband of 40+ years this January. She is strong and determined and forges on. I am right beside her. She has been there for me too, like a pillar of strength.
We are all so humorous, as well. The laughter was abundant. I had show tunes playing in the back round on the 'On Demand" music channel. We laughed so hard as songs played that we knew and each of us falsely believed we could sing along well to such tunes as "Memories", or "Think Of Me" from Phantom, and "Maria" from West Side Story - it was hysterical. -)
We ate well. Quiche, bagels, fruit salad and apple walnut coffee cake, coffee and orange juice and delightful conversation.
My eldest daughter called me from upstate NY. Her words to me were a gift. She said
I am who I am because of you Mom and I love you".
My son called from Brooklyn - he too gave me a gift in his words. He said "remember Mom, that all of my victories are victories of yours, as well".
And my daughter, the one that lives near by and is in 'trouble in her life' as you all have read. She called, only to tell me she would not be coming over. The excuses matter not as they were not true anyway. My heart broke in that moment. Knowing how trapped she is and that I can't free her. The door here is open, and inside here is love and hope. She need only to walk through the door. She was missed as was her son.
And so despite the piece of my heart that broke - my heart was filled with love and gratitude and joy as I immersed myself in the love and beauty that surrounded me. I feel it all - embrace it all as this is my truth - my heart - my life. And Skipp, my guy? He brought me one rose and a perfect card and in the card he wrote - "One rose you might ponder" One rose because you are the only one". :-) He also got me five packs of chuckles candy, five being my lucky number and I love chuckles. On that sweet note I will close.

Love Gail
peace and "chuckles"

Friday, May 8, 2009


Nothing better than Eric Clapton singin' the blues...................

I have been quiet these days. A time for reflection to gain insight, direction, decisions and the like. I welcomed the cloudy misty days which provided me with a dim view from which I could be ever more quiet and contemplative.

I surprised myself when I yelled at her. I know it was out of fear and I wanted her to hear me, knowing full well that louder doesn't make people hear, in fact, it does quite the opposite. And so I had to 'quiet' myself for a while - relax all my emotions, calm my fears, and emerge softly and lovingly, and I have. It is a quiet storm. I know that love is heard, softness absorbs, gentle challenges are received, and reminders to others effected that despite their fear and anger, love must rebound. I saw her today. She came over to me arms open, we hugged. I stroked her hair and told her I loved her. And I do, so very much.

The quiet storm of fear within is still active. I feel it's power and warning and promise of destruction. I offer in response, love. I speak truthfully of things to come, she listens in silence. I open my heart for her to see it's wealth, wisdom and hope. She listens in silence. Her quiet Storm is evident as well. We both know. I search her blue eyes for that sparkle. It is dim, barely a flicker, but heart to heart, I see it. I know that love will help it to brighten again, shine boldly and purposefully and courageously. I tell her again, only this time in a whisper - that 'his' story must change and that she is the only one who can do that for him. He is only six. The dim sparkle in her eyes brighten ever so slightly. I know she heard me. Her eyes spoke for her.

And so today I am back in the light of love. The quiet storm is not over- only now I have emerged from my quiet place. A necessary darkness as I lost sight - blinded by fear - over taken by anger. Nothing good can happen while those two emotional forces are in command and I knew that. Love is in command, once again. All things are possible with love.

Love Gail