My life is a spiritual journey, always searching for that elusive connection. At four I asked my older brother who was five at the time: “Where is God?”
“Everywhere.” He answered.
Puzzled, I searched the bushes. I was sure I’d find something, but never did. I kept my brother’s words in my heart while growing up, and figured I’d have an answer some day. In the meantime, I got my master’s degree in marriage, family and child counseling, married and held management positions in non-profits for thirty years—all while exploring my passion for dance, art and writing.
My spiritual journey took on new dimensions when I moved to Bangkok, Thailand for three years with my husband and thirteen-year-old son. I was fortunate to meet my spiritual teacher, Venerable Dhammananda Bhikkhuni, the first fully ordained Thai Theravadin nun—an encounter that changed my life forever. You can see a video of Dhammananda by clicking here.
I write about my relationship with Dhammananda in my memoir, Finding Venerable Mother: A Daughter’s Spiritual Quest to Thailand, which describes my adventures along the spiritual path.
Venerable Dhammananda says, “It all begins here in our hearts,” and I sincerely believe that is true. Early on in our relationship I started to cry. She said, “That’s okay, people often cry when they first arrive. You build a wall around yourself, and that wall starts to peel off, and you allow that soft you to come out. I believe that change comes from the heart, not from the intellect. You must feel it. If you have to weep, weep, and it opens you up and leads you to change.”
As my relationship with Venerable Dhammananda deepened through the years we became closer. In 2014, I took temporary ordination with her. I shaved my head, received the precepts, and wore the saffron robes for two weeks before I returned to regular lay life. This ordination was my further introduction to a spiritual life.
My other writings include an article “Visiting Venerable Dhammananda” published in Sawasdee Magazine in 2007, and essays featured in two anthologies: Wandering in Paris: Luminaries and Love in the City of Light (Wanderland Writers, 2013), and A Café in Space: The Anaïs Nin Literary Journal (Blue Sky Press, 2014.)
I am now retired and live and write in Pt. Richmond where I have beautiful views of the San Francisco Bay.