Paris Portal

I don’t recall if a trip to Paris or anywhere in France was ever on my bucket list.  I have no recollection of really daydreaming about being anywhere in France or anything in relation to it or the French for that matter. Well, maybe Lourdes… I think my mom and I somehow wanted to go on a pilgrimage there but that’s about it and after she died it just wasn’t something I really wanted to do anymore.

After my trip to Paris I feel like my life turned around. It’s like I have met my “alchemist” and I have evolved… this person had the Midas touch… though we have never physically touched… he has touched my spirit and blew life into my otherwise dead  shell… my world was transformed since I met him. I wouldn’t really give him all the credit. There’s magic to being in a new place and Europe is breathtaking… Italy was luscious landscape, bursting with culture and history!  Paris is quite alluring, Venice is just so… I can’t even find the words…


It’s been half a year since that day and I still feel like I am dreaming and I do not want to wake up because it is such a good dream. I feel like I don’t even know which one is real… is this my reality or the one before that trip? Before I crossed that “portal” if you may. I do not feel comfortable to disclose the exact day in September that I feel I have passed through that Paris portal that transformed my life maybe forever  (hopefully not temporarily) but either way, I embrace it because I have been so sad for a long time… I feel like I have lost my passion for life and I forgot what used to make me happy. Then all of a sudden it hit me… I have found joy again… and excitement… and I could not contain it. It was like a drug… and I couldn’t stop smiling and giggling… I had so much energy.

And you know what else… I found self esteem!!! I came out of there the same middle aged woman with wrinkles,  extra weight, love handles, droopy boobs, cottage cheese but this time I didn’t give a flying rat’s a$$… I feel younger, I look younger… I feel like I can take on more stuff on my bucket list… I can’t explain it and I don’t care to… I’m happy and that’s all that matters to me now. I embrace it.

~~~ Namaste MariaeZen


If I Should Die Before I Wake…


I used to be scared of death… not because of fear that I might go to hell… I have accepted God as my Lord and saviour a long time ago. I know I’m going to heaven. Jesus died for our sins. But my kids were so young and I just had so much to do… to prove… now my oldest has finished college and my youngest is graduating from high school and maybe joining the military this summer… I’m all set… I think…

I don’t know what happened to me… I took a Euro-trip last year and it seems like I passed thru a portal… yeah, I keep saying that like a broken record… it seems like there was a shift in my brain… in my life… I’m no longer scared of death… there’s not a lot of stuff that scares me anymore… or maybe they still do but I feel like not a lot of things can stop me now. Or maybe I’m just numb? I can’t even use online skates before, now I want to buy my own Harley, go Sky Diving, bungee jumping,  for goodness sakes! WTH is going on???

Just the other night, I was watching this show on TV, a documentary about this 29 year old woman, Brittany Maynard,  who had a brain tumor who opted to move to Oregon (one of only 5 states where death with dignity is authorized) so she can request and receive a prescription from a physician for medication that she could self-ingest to end her dying process if it becomes unbearable. Death with dignity is an end-of-life option for mentally competent, terminally ill patients with a prognosis of 6 months or less to live. It would enable them to use the medical practice of aid in dying.

I’m not depressed or anything… well, maybe I am, sometimes ;-)… but that’s not the point… I’m not suicidal… I actually love my life… I’m happy… I’m grateful… I feel blessed… I like the space I’m in right now…  I just don’t care about dying… or getting injured… unlike before… I always thought of that… if I did this, who’s gonna take care of my kids? who’s gonna pay for the bills… not too worried about that now… oh well, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not Want“… (Psalm 23)

Anyway, I was always adamant about not taking ones own life (or others) because of my Christian belief… however, yesterday, after watching that show, I told my daughter that I may consider it if the pain may turn out to be unbearable. I don’t know. I’ll cross the bridge when I get there… but for now, I’m ready to tackle my Bucket List … Carpe Diem…

~~~ Namaste MariaeZen

La Vita è Bella (Life is Beautiful)



One of my all time favorite movies is   La Vita è Bella (Life is Beautiful)  by Roberto Benigni. Why am I writing about this? Well, the title speaks for itself… life indeed is beautiful.. there’s so much to be grateful for. And this is really an all-time excellent feel good movie that made me cry in the end… talking about “unconditional love”… this is a great follow up blog. Just imagine all the sacrifices he made so that his child won’t end up with PTSD after this horrific experience. If it were just us normal, regular folks as we like to label ourselves, we’d be nut jobs already having to go through what they went through and we’d be lucky not to be taking anti-depressants for the rest of our lives after that. He still saw the glass as half full the whole time he was at the camp because he had his family and he was blessed and fortunate til the end. Ultimately he got what he wanted… kinda sorta… I don’t want to give away spoilers in case you decide to watch it. It’s an excellent family movie. The power of the mind indeed!



For those who haven’t seen this movie you’re missing out and if you have no plans of watching it, here’s a synopsis…

This was set in a Tuscan town during WW II. A tragic rom-com about Guido Orefice , a Jewish – Italian librarian who starts a fairy tale life by courting and marrying a lovely woman named Dora and their union bore them a son they named Giosue. They lived happily together until the occupation of Italy by German forces. Guido is comical and sharp, making the best from each situation he encounters. When the war started, Guido, and son were taken to the camp and Dora tries to join them but men and women are separated in the camp, Dora and Guido never see each other during the internment. Thus, Guido pulls off stunts, such as using the camp’s loudspeaker, to send messages, symbolic or literal, to Dora to assure her that he and their son are safe. Giosuè who hates to take baths and showers barely avoids being gassed himself because he did not follow the other children when they had been ordered to enter the gas chambers.

After they are imprisoned in a concentration camp, Guido goes to elaborate lengths to keep his son from understanding the truth of their situation. To protect Giosué from the horror of what is happening to them, Guido employ his fertile imagination to shield his son from the horrors of internment in a Nazi concentration camp. Guido explains to Giosuè that the camp is a complicated game in which he must perform the tasks Guido gives him. Giosuè is at times reluctant to go along with the game, but Guido convinces him each time to continue on. The other prisoners were actually in on it which made it a little less complicated. In this game, certain tasks will earn them points and whoever gets 1,000 points first will win a tank. Guido’s primary goal is to keep Giosué safe at all cost, while he tries to figure out a way to get his family out of the camp and keep the Germans at bay from learning what he is doing with Giosué. He tells him that if he cries, complains that he wants his mother, or says that he is hungry, he will lose points, while quiet boys who hide from the camp guards earn extra points. Guido uses this game to explain features of the concentration camp that would otherwise be frightening for a young child: the guards are mean only because they want the tank for themselves; the dwindling numbers of children (who are being killed in gas chambers) are only hiding in order to score more points than Giosuè so they can win the game. He puts off Giosuè’s requests to end the game and return home by convincing him that they are in the lead for the tank, and need only wait a short while before they can return home with their tank. Guido eventually buys additional time by intentionally getting Giosuè mixed in with nearby German schoolchildren, and briefly working as a servant for the same kids in order to help keep the other officials from noticing that Giosuè is actually Italian.

Giosuè appears to believe his father because of Guido’s convincing performance and his own innocence. Guido maintains this story right until the end when, in the chaos of shutting down the camp as the Allied forces approach, he tells his son to stay in a box until everybody has left, this being the final competition before the tank is his. Guido makes an attempt to find his wife in the midst of the chaos and is caught by a German soldier who decided to execute Guido. As he was being led off by the soldier, while he is walking to his death, Guido passes by Giosuè one last time, still in character and playing the game. The next morning, Giosuè emerges from the sweatbox, just as a U.S. Army unit led by a Sherman tank arrives and the camp is liberated. Giosuè was ecstatic nd is convinced he has won the game and the prize. While they are traveling, the soldiers allow Giosuè to ride on the tank with them and during the trip he finds Dora leaving the camp and they’re finally reunited.

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Thanks for reading… I hope you enjoyed it…


~~~ Namaste ❤ MariaeZen