Ladies Need to Follow their Instincts and Passions


Eve was the first woman to flee and find adventure. Intrepid women travelers have been pushing up against man-made boundaries and shocking their societies.

The first woman to document her travels was a nun named Etheria. In 381 A.D.
She wandered to Jerusalem and continued on to Egypt searching for freedom of choice.

In 1784, Elizabeth Thible became the first women to travel in a hot-air balloon because she knew the sky was not the limit.

Nellie Bly, an American journalist and Victorian lady traveled around the world in seventy-two days, six hours, and eleven minutes. What an inspiration to us in the twenty-first century!

Women have been having adventures and conquering their fears for centuries. They caused family scandles and much gossip in their lives. However, they didn’t listen to the people who said no, you can’t do this. They knew their hearts and went anyway. I am sure they were afraid at times but they grabbed onto life with all of the strength they had and held on for dear life!

Julia Archibald Holmes climbed Pike’s Peak in 1858 and wrote, “I have accomplished the task which I marked out for myself. Nearly everyone tried to discourage me from attempting it, but I believed that I should succeed.”

” Life seems to throw many more adventures your way when you are prepared, it is very sexy to know how to take care of yourself,” by an Italian woman named Sylvania.

Life can be scary and we can at times be filled with anxiety and hesitancy. We are here to experience life, and I don’t mean just the men. It is important to grab on to whatever is close-by and hold on. Allow yourself to laugh and love, eat and cry. This is life.

There are many books published documenting the adventures of women and they give us the luxury of sitting on a beach and walk in a Rainforest. You can absorb their experiences vicariously.

I have a friend who is a college professor of Photography. We have traveled together in days past when I was more mobile. She is a birder as well and has traveled from Peru to Siberia. I am lucky enough to see her slides and enjoy her stories. She is such a rich font of experiences and a true inspiration to her students.

I encourage every woman to visit their dreams and feel their strength. Take that step that will eventually take you to a rich and passionate life. If family or friends think of you as too wild, remember that ‘wild women don’t get the blues’.

There are several books that you could read and perhaps inspire the adventurer within. Spinsters Abroad; Victorian Lady Explorers by Dea Birkett. Living with Cannibals and Other Women’s Adventures by Michele Slung and a really good one called Unsuitable for Ladies by Jane Robinson.

Your adventures may be joining the YMCA, or joining a quilting circle, taking classes, vacationing on the Galapagos Islands. Take skating lessons, read a new author, buy a wide brim hat just because they are coming back into style.
Have fun and enjoy conquering your world. I did and have no regrets.

French Quarters, New Orleans; Photo by Barbara Mattio

Johnson Space Center, Houston, Tx.; Photo by Barbara Mattio

The Alamo, San Antonio, Tx.; Photo by Barbara Mattio

A Desperate World


No matter where you live on our planet, the countries are filled with hatred, selfishness, a lack of compassion and empathy. People who are marginalized in their countries are angry and want change. They lack the education or the will to use positive tools to bring justice and peace to the world. Guns, hatred, meanness, rifles, bombs, and attacking perfect strangers will not make your life better or happier.

Every person wants to make their life better.  You need to do this. You can do this. You don’t need to cause pain and suffering if that is what is in your life. Your life can be improved. Many people have done just that.

 

The desperate  state of the world calls us to action. Each of us has a responsibility to try to help at the deeper level of our common humanity. Unfortunately, humanity is too often sacrificed in defense of ideology. This is absolutely wrong.

 

Political systems should actually benefit human beings, but, like money, they can control us instead of work for us. Humankind must seek harmony among nations, ideologies, cultures, ethnic groups, and economic and political  systems.When we truly recognize the oneness of all humankind, our motivation to find peace will grow stronger.

 

In the deepest sense we are really sisters and brothers, so we must share one another’s suffering. Mutual respect, trust, and concern for one another’s welfare are our best hope for lasting world peace.

 

Of course, national leaders have a special responsibility in this area, but every individual must also take the initiative, regardless of religious belief or political affiliation. Just by being human, by seeking to gain happiness and avoid suffering, you are a citizen of this planet. We are all responsible for creating a better future.

 

To achieve a friendly attitude, a warm heart, respect for the rights of others, and concern for their welfare, you must train the mind. All forms of meditation cultivate an attitude of compassion and calm. It creates a state of mind particularly crucial in human society today for its power to yield true harmony among nations, races, and people from diverse religious, political and economic systems.  WE ARE ALL ONE!

 

 

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My neighborhood pond, Autumn.   Photographed and copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2013

At my development.Photographed and copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2014

 

 

What the world needs now

What the world needs now

Thoughts at sixty three


I played with Jill, my dolphin friend

I played with Jill, my dolphin friend

There is a lot a things I have done in this period of time. Sixty actually came as quite a shock. I remember my 30th birthday as huge, loud, a sea of faces most of them I knew and some I did not. For me, the realization that all of that is in the past was confusing. Where did it go?

What happened to the women I counseled at the Domestic Violence shelter and Rape Crisis? Why couldn’t I work two jobs and volunteer at the same time? I had done it before, why was I so tired?

Why was my shiny black curly hair streaked with some GREY? Now I am blonde. Someone tells a story and you are laughing and filling in details and someone else mentions that was forty years ago. My heart skips a beat and I say to myself that it can’t be that long. It just can’t.

Life is like the summer breeze gently caressing your cheek. It stays on your cheek a second but in your heart for forty years. I gave a surprise birthday party last night for a friend. I found out that I wasn’t the only white woman with an Afro in the seventies. I wore it with pride sometimes with flowers woven into it.

I think much more these days, I think about people who came into my life and then passed through, as they were meant to do. Others stayed to teach lessons.  Some came into my life because I was to teach them a lesson. I remember them with friendship and love. Old lovers who are still in small bits of my life as we have all moved along in life and yet still talk.

The misogyny I encountered remains but the real work of helping women I have had to hand over to those who are younger in body. The comforting thing is that I am now writing and painting. I wait for death but not on a conscious level. The end is coming but it is only the end here. Life is a continual experience and for part of it we don’t wear these bodies we have now. I believe I will be home again.

I think more of those who have passed before me. I remember the good and bad and know it will be wonderful to be with them again. My grandparents, the baby I lost, friends who died way too early. A lover who died too young. My late husband who has been gone since 1995.

I know I am not afraid to die and will continue to live life as fully as I possibly can and I encourage everyone to do that. Life is for living and it is a huge gift. Don’t waste it. Live it and try what is new, what looks like fun. No rocker for us because there are still trees to see, flowers to smell, parties to give, jet skis to ride, beaches to walk, mountains so large they fill you up. So don’t decide you are too old to learn the new technology. I learned and continue to learn and so can you. Make adjustments but don’t ever give up. The Universe put us here for the experience so don’t waste this opportunity.

The fragrance of Water lilies stirs ones heart as the carress of a lover.  Photograph taken and copyrighted by Brabara Mattio 2013

The fragrance of Water lilies stirs one’s heart as the caress of a lover. Photograph taken and copyrighted by Brabara Mattio 2013

Gestalt at Sixty

I am not ready to die,
But I am learning to trust death
As I have trusted life.
I am moving
Toward a new freedom
Born of detachment,
And a sweeter grace—-
Learning to let go
I am not ready to die,
But as I approach sixty
I turn my face toward the sea.
I shall go where tides replace time,
Where my world will open to a far horizon
Over the floating, never-still flux and change
I shall go with the changes,
I shall look far out over golden grasses
And blue waters.

There are no farewells.

Praise God for His mercies,
For His austere demands,
For His light
And for his darkness.”

—May Sarton

Dolphin jumping in Nasau Photograph taken and copyrighted 2013

Dolphin jumping in Nausau
Photograph taken and copyrighted 2013

Creativity is Part of the Journey


What does a creative person, a writer, sculptor, poet, musician, painter, photographer do to handle to stresses and disappointments along their path?
How to justify their lives, choices, the time given to their creativity? How to have a meaningful life and share their gifts with the world?

It starts with the development of a personal creed. A creative life must have meaning to the individual person and must continually produce a sequel into that meaning.

Men and women who seek to create meaning through their work are heroes and heroines in many ways. They have opted to matter. They know they can’t be ordinary and that their work can not be meaningless. This path is harder than most but it gives the world the gift of Divine beauty.

I believe that part of the creative journey is the interweaving of spiritual truths and creative necessity. The mind, heart, soul, and creative energies must be flowing instinctual. We are the sole arbiter of the meaning we choose to give to our lives. Accepting our human nature is a large part of the journey. The clue is not to accept meaningless lives. Our lives must vibrate with meaning. The trick is it may not mean the same thing to others as it does to you. But it is your life, so embrace it and run with it!

Painting by Barbara Mattio

Painting by Barbara Mattio