birthday ramble (and birthday suit pic)

This was a very good year.
Perhaps my best.
It does just seem to get better and better.

This year was marked by some significant circumstances for me.

I started my 35th year newly single and in pain.
I thought that healing after a breakup would be easier now that I am older and more evolved.
I was wrong.

It was the first time that I’ve ever questioned if the joy outweighed the pain.

I went to a therapist for a short bit.
I detoxed for a period.
And I got much more disciplined in my spiritual practice.
In particular, a regularly saw two teachers: Grandpa Caleb and Jacob Glass.

I saw them both weekly for most the year, and the impact has been profound.

I spent lots of time over the past year with my parents, too.
And had the absolute joy of watching my nephew come into being.

Baby Caleb’s fire grew strong. As Grandpa Caleb’s fire went out.

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It was beautiful and poetic.

And while I *have* cried, I have experienced almost no sadness with Grandpa’s passing.

I feel blessed and honored to have shared his final chapter.

I learned that, more than any wise words, it was Grandpa’s intense state of gratitude that affected me most.

I also found out that the Old man and I had a special bond: We both love the stage. We both love spreading love. And to many people’s disapproval, we’re not bashful about it.

After Grandma died, some voices around him were saying, “quiet down, preacher.”
But I was turning the volume of his mic up, broadcasting it around the web, and recording it for future generations.

I consider our HugNation collaborations among my greatest achievements. I feel honored to have worked with my grandpa, and honored to share such a sacred moment with everyone who joined us in that journey over the last year.

I think one reason why grandpa was so happy and peaceful during his final chapter was because the magnitude of love he felt from his online connections.

So thank YOU for being a part of something so special. (even if you haven’t watched an old HugNation with grandpa yet…whenever you do, you’ll be a part of it.)

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The truth is, I wasn’t sure if I would continue HugNation after Grandpa passed.

I love hosting HugNations. I love setting up the digital space and getting a group of loving people together. And while I enjoy leading the hug very much, sometimes I don’t feel like I deserve to lead it.
I don’t meditate. I enjoy to excess. I enjoy porn. I’m vain. Etc. etc.

Grandpa, on the other hand, walked the walk.

So I wasn’t sure if I had earned the right to continue hosting by myself.

But I dunno. It just felt right to continue and let it shift form.
So I listened to impulse.
I introduced the idea of the Tao Buffet. So that instead of interviewing Grandpa before the hug, I tell a short story.

I tell them for my own benefit…to remind myself of things like,
“Float more, steer less. Love more, fear less.”

But the vibe is the same. And Grandpa’s energy still flows through.
And I think everyone who participates feels it, too.

Attendance is higher than ever. And in the last week I’ve become swept up in an “RV Hug Tour” idea that has taken me over in a way that I can barely describe. It is wonderful.
It’s as if the Hugmobile is my Pink Ark…and this is our destiny.

rv 013

So as my next cycle around the sun begins, I am full of excitement and hope and love.

It is an honor to share the path with you.

Thank you for being you.

me in my birthday suit after the cut…

birthday suit

9 thoughts on “birthday ramble (and birthday suit pic)”

  1. ~*~*~*~*~*~ HAPPY BIRTHDAY ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    and very very nice birthday suit!!!!

    *wolf whistle*

    have a blessed day!

  2. Keep rocking it Hal!

    I am glad that you continued to do HG. It is amazing how big of a difference it can make in someone’s week. I know that it has definitely been the highlight of mine for quite some time! Long live HG 🙂

  3. If you make it as far as the east coast, let me know! I want to experience on of those hugs for real!!

    In any case, Happy Birthday… and here’s to another year of spreading the love!

  4. Happy Year 36! Thank you so much for letting us be a part of your life. And thank you for continuing HugNation. I love the new format and the Tao Buffet has popped up in my life quite often! As for walking the walk – it is wonderful to be ‘taught’ by someone so real, so perfectly imperfect, someone so like us. I was thrilled to see you standing in front of an RV this morning when I logged on. I’m soooo happy for you! She’s beautiful and so lucky to have found you – what a glorious life she has ahead of her!
    Have fun painting. I painted my living room pink this weekend and found it extremely worthwhile! Enjoy the year ahead!

  5. Happy Birthday and congrats on the purchase 🙂

    Aspen Valley is lovely in September, you should visit after Burning Man!

  6. ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE, The human touch is so very important,it can sustain a life and extend it, To never feel alone, to connect is just beautiful. Thank you for extending life, sharing hope,being free to be…….
    smiles & hugs,
    Oh ,almost forgot, I have found to be humbled ,puts everything that matters in front of you.

  7. I like the Idea of portraits as we grow older , who says we have to stop at the infant stage (those pictures in the album). As an artist, I have photographed my hands as they touch and feel, create , so every year I photograph them and list all they have touched and felt, as a woman I guess they should be cared for and I do care for them by reaching out …….Smiles and Hugs
    a smile will bring a smile

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