Written on a green wall of a pizza restaurant are the words, “I Love You So Much.”
It’s a mural turned into a tourist souvenir photo spot in Downtown Austin.
Time with Friends sharing the most delicious food and unlimited Nespresso everyday, “I Love You So Much.”
A visit at the Capitol, the American Flag with its Stars and Stripes flying glorious and brave across the sky, “I Love You So Much.”
Lady Bird Lake Kayaking at Zilker Park with the Austin City View above, and the emerald clear waters below, “I Love You So Much.”
Texas generous Outdoors, Sunsets and Roadtrips, “I Love You So Much.”
Hiking McKinney Upper Falls, “I Love You So Much.”
We hiked further excited to see the Lower Falls featured at the front page of the Texas Parks Brochure.
My heart sunk when I did not see the Lower Falls. Instead, I saw countless potholes. Most are dried up. Few deep ones still have small water in them.
I kept walking, the rest stayed either under the tree for shade or watching the mother turtle and her young turtle resting on a log.
I heard a faint sound of a Water Fall. As I point to its direction, I shouted, “Guys, the Seconds Falls is down there.” I wasn’t really sure, could have been an auditory hallucination.
Discovering the last remaining part of the Lower Falls, “I Love You So Much.”
Whether it’s a vow, a promise or a happy moment, “I Love You So Much,” sums up unforgettable travel memories, places and experiences one shares with people.
By themselves, the isolated words sound lonely, empty, even self absorbed.
Together, “I Love You So Much,” becomes a meaningful selfless expression of love, generosity, kindness, connection and community.
So, I’m choosing Together and passing it on.
At first, I took a vacation to escape everything that’s burning me out.
The past week, I am rediscovering and reconnecting to many parts of myself that I used to love so much.
I hope it’s enough to face work, people and life differently when I come back.
Escape was never the answer. Loving, understanding and forgiving myself are.
I look at our Austin pics and I see a stress free happier me. I look at my smile and I notice it is not forced nor fake. I look at my face and my wrinkles are hardly visible not even my many months of daily topical glycolic acid use can erase. My anxiety is gone. I’m in a beautiful peaceful and calm surrender for 7 days.
The contrast is striking. The difference? Feeling and looking 10 years younger. That in itself is a gift and a miracle.
A new friend who welcomed us at her home in Fort Worth said, “You must be 30?” I told her smiling, “I’m not 30. I’m 50, but thank you. You’re so kind.” She gave me the biggest age discount I have not heard in 4 years.
During the name introductions, she asked our Austin friend, “Are they your children.” My friend laughed, shook her head and said, “Oh, No. They are our friends from California. My daughter is in college, and my son is now working in New York.”
We flew back home last night. I had to hold back tears as I said goodbye to my friends in Austin. They are in every way my extended Family and I’m very thankful.
Something in me change because of our vacation. For the first time, I turned off the T.V. as soon as I heard the same bad, negative repetitive news and content.
“We are more than just a leaf that fell off from its tree. Living is a choice. Dying is also a choice. Being more is a choice. Happiness is a choice that needs constant watering and gardening to thrive.”
Today, I told my wife to cut off our cable and just keep the internet. It’s $100 savings per month, $1,200 per year. That’s $12,000 in 10 years. That’s a lot of savings both money and work time. Plus, I’m saving myself a ton of toxic negativity.
I hope to incorporate in my everyday thinking and living Mindfulness that focuses on happiness, calmness, positivity, courage, contentment, patience and forgiveness.
I will invest more on People and Experiences that will help me overcome one by one all the Demons I’m trying to run away from because truth is, there is no place to hide from them. The only way to win, is to face them.
Lessons to my story? Take more short travel vacations visiting friends and family. Be generous in giving yourself time off from work and all anxiety provoking drama. Make new moments and memories. Don’t let the fear and anger of others be yours.
Don’t let your fear and anger consume all that’s good in you. Remember what makes you happier, younger, calmer and do them often. Dream again. Live again. Learn to let go. Trust and welcome God and People into your life again. Start and reset whenever you need it.
Our Life, our choice of how to spent the remainder of it. 10 years from now, we may be extinct. Could be sooner.
So, we go and take a vacation for ourselves that says, “I Love You So Much.”
Happiness and Mental Health is all about Vacation, Vacation, Vacation.
How do I say a “Big Thank You” in Texan? With a Big Post written with a Big Heart.
I didn’t tell my friends I blog, but someday they will find this tribute to them and our friendship.
Destiny no doubt will find a way when one of us needed to be inspired and be reawakened.