Heart Reading … Day 5

Karen Willard Ribeiro
2 min readJul 21, 2021
Heartbreak shatters the shell around the heart and awakens its capacity to love

Today has been something. I have more energy than “normal” and “should” be sad under the “circumstances” but I’m either in denial or I’m feeling the joy of having advocated for needs that have been minimized — because they are the kind of needs that aren’t in the lower and “more important” levels of Mr. Maslow’s “hierarchy” of needs. I need to feel understood and resonant.

And because I have recently taken definitive steps toward stopping the minimization (if that’s a word) of my needs — because I am setting a hard boundary and no longer willing to be blind to the ways in which I have been minimized — I feel spacious and present and more engaged with my experience of gratitude than I have in a while. It is also summer, my favorite season, which helps.

While driving around with the windows open on this hot and humid day (I don’t start getting uncomfortable until the temps rise above 85 degrees) I caught a whiff of a mix between cut grass and pond which triggered a childhood feeling of peacefulness. And I held that nostalgia for a while (still holding). This feels like an increased capacity to love life for the little things.

I carved out time from work and took a walk with a friend I hadn’t seen in years. It was SO WONDERFUL. We got hissed at by geese because we didn’t think twice about walking right into a gaggle of them. Fortunately we were unscathed. The insects enjoying our scent and circling around our head during much of the walk were less bothersome than “normal” and we talked intimately, safely, and respectfully in a way that was nourishing — refreshing like a glass of iced water.

A big thought occurred to me while driving: when one is “blind” to their trauma they need a lot of stability to balance them out but once one has healed from trauma as a steady-state of being, it becomes possible to swim farther out into the depths of the life’s unpredictable rivers. If we don’t allow our healing and healed selves to swim, we might sink under the weight of stability.

We need tables and chairs to be stable. Some of life’s greatest mysteries are only revealed as we explore its depths — with curiosity and faith.



Karen Willard Ribeiro

Beyond Karen: emerging from the depths of an epic epithet is available at innerfortune.com and at your favorite independent bookseller. Thanks for reading.