My Birthday Reflection
My Birthday Reflection
As I approach my birthday and a new year of life, I’ve been thinking about how blessed I am.
I’m blessed to live in this country. Blessed to have my family and my friends. Blessed to be in conversation with a loving non-judgmental god. Blessed to have work that interests me. Blessed to be in community with people who are good, kind, compassionate and inspiring. I include you, the readers of The Sunday Paper, as part of that community.
Overall, I feel like I’m in a good place in my life. That doesn’t mean everything is exactly as I would like it. But, I have faith in myself and in the universe.
I haven’t always felt like this, but I’ve worked hard to get myself to this place, and I know that I need to reinforce the blessings on a daily basis.
So, every day, I begin my day with a meditation to help set me on the right path. I’m getting better at silencing the critical voice in my mind, and now, I have the tools to help guide my life forward in a positive way.
One of the other things that I’ve found to be really helpful to me on my journey is poetry—not just reading it, but also writing it. Yes, I write a lot of poetry. In fact, when I’m not working or hanging with my kids, you can usually find me sitting on my back porch writing poetry.
Now, I know I’m not Mary Oliver, Maya Angelou, or Derek Walcott. But it doesn’t matter. Like them, and like you, I have a voice. I have feelings. And, I have the ability to write down what I think.
My daughter calls my poetry “reporter poetry.” I just call it poetry, because that’s what it is to me. Writing poetry has been healing for me. Reading other people’s poems, reflections, and words have also inspired me. (I saw Bruce Springsteen’s show on Broadway Thursday… It was such a beautiful evening of stories, words, prayers, and a form of poetry.) So, in honor of my birthday on Monday, I wanted to share one of my poems with you here today. I wrote it as a wish for me and for those that I love. I hope you enjoy.
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VIEWS ABOVE THE NOISE
VIEWS TO PROTECT YOUR MIND
Women’s Health: It Starts With the Brain: I spent most of my time this past week in New York City, where I had the honor of hosting a summit on women’s brain health with my nonprofit, The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement, and its media partner, Lifetime Television. We spoke with leading scientists and experts about what makes women’s brains different, what we can all do to lead a brain-healthy life. Please watch our video from the conference. I hope it will inspire you to make changes in your life, which will in turn, help your mind. [WATCH HERE]
NEWS TO SAVE YOUR MIND
Catching Alzheimer’s symptoms early may help delay the disease: Though many people think Alzheimer’s is an on “old people’s disease,” doctors now say that the body may show warning signs decades earlier. Last week, as part of my TODAY show series, Brain Power Today, I reported on new ways to detect the disease while there’s still time for lifestyle changes to make a difference. [WATCH HERE]
More videos from my Brain Power series this week:
NEWS TO CALM YOUR MIND
Asking for Acceptance: I always learn something meaningful from spiritual guide and Architect of Change Jack Kornfield. I hope his latest essay, Discover What Is Asking For Acceptance, resonates with you, too. [READ MORE]
A FILM TO MOVE YOU AND MAKE YOU THINK
“The Long Road Home”: I am so proud of my son, Patrick Schwarzenegger, and his work in the new National Geographic mini-series, “The Long Road Home,” which premieres November 7. This powerful production, based on the book by Martha Radditz, relives a heroic fight for survival during the 2004 Iraq War, when the 1st Cavalry Division from Fort Hood was ambushed in Sadr City, Baghdad. Patrick plays Sgt Ben Hayhurst. It’s a story, and a film, that really moved me, and that I think will have the same impact on you. [WATCH THE TRAILER HERE]
THE HAPPIEST PLACES ON EARTH: Architect of Change of the Week Dan Buettner has literally traveled the world to seek out societies, known as Blue Zones, that experience the highest-levels of happiness and longevity. In his latest book, “The Blue Zones of Happiness,” he offers game-changing advice on how to make your life the happiest it can be. He spoke with The Sunday Paper exclusively this week to share more about what you need to know. [READ MORE]
NEWS ABOVE THE NOISE
While I was busy on the Alzheimer’s front this week, there were still so many other interesting stories that caught my attention and rose above the noise of the other news. Here are a few of them.
PRECOCIOUS REPORTER TURNS AUTHOR: Hilde Lysiak is a 10-year-old budding journalist who has already gone viral after breaking a local murder story in her New Jersey hometown. She is now writing a series of books based on her experiences. [READ MORE]
SERENBE COMMUNES WITH THE ENVIRONMENT: An experimental community located just outside Atlanta is reconnecting its residents with nature. [READ MORE]
Robert Frost is one of my favorite American poets and “The Road Not Taken,” one of my favorite poems. It is a representation of the real world, poetically stating that we are all confronted with, and defined by, the choices we make in life.
INSPIRATION FOR THE WEEK AHEAD
SHOP FOR YOUR MIND
Get Empowered. Pass It Forward.
We’re so excited to announce that we’ve added a few new items to our shop! Check out our stylish apparel to fight Alzheimer’s, created in partnership with Art With a Purpose. You can also pre-order Maria’s new book “I’ve Been Thinking…: Reflections, Prayers and Meditations for a Meaningful Life.” Visit the shop on MariaShriver.com to learn more!
READ MORE ABOUT WHAT I'VE BEEN THINKING
Here we are in a new year, with the promise of a new day. New days. New years. Earlier this week, my dear friend Oprah Winfrey delivered a powerful speech about a new day being on the horizon. I love that imagery, I love her, and I love that truth. I, for one, believe...read more
Last year around New Year’s, my kids and I stood around a fire. One by one, we threw into the fire what we wanted to burn from the past year. We also voiced our intentions for our lives moving forward. We did it again this year, but this time, I had just one intention...read more
On this New Year’s Eve, we here at The Sunday Paper want to take a moment to say thank you for being in community with us this year. Each week, Maria shares her “I’ve Been Thinking” essays, as well as news and views from others who are moving humanity forward, with...read more