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Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
Karen is a yogini, writer, student, teacher and meditator. She founded Garden Street School of Yoga in 2000. Karen lives with her husband Chris. They have two amazing sons, Eli and Leo (both of them young men).

Oct 10, 2010


Leo left early this morning. He will be meeting up with Eli (who is currently in France) and they will commence "The Big Adventure" together.

Leo was amazing in his leaving. He thoughtfully said his various goodbyes. He carefully and even with an attitude of sacredness put his room right. He spent a long time playing the piano - as if letting it know that he would be away. He stayed incredibly mindful and present with the whole process of "leaving home." When Eli left he did so in a similar mindful and great-hearted way. I don't know if it would be harder or easier to say goodbye if they were less amazing young men.

After I saw Leo off at the airport, I sat for my morning meditation. In spite of being on the verge of a downpour of tears, the moment I closed my eyes I felt awareness begin to move purposefully. It is if - in meditation - my awareness becomes a housecleaning goddess. She (
the venerable-housecleaning- meditation-goddess - or the VHMG) gets straight to work. She searches in every nook and cranny of my being for heavy, thickened gunk.

This morning after Leo left She didn't have much trouble doing her cleaning up
in my mind. My thoughts about the boys leaving are steady and easy. They are off to travel and learn, not off to war.

The VHMG also did not have much trouble cleaning up around my heart. I was surprised! As I meditated I felt my heart grow lighter without much resistance.

What really put the
VHMG to task was my body. The simple-wise animal of my body - muscle and bone and mother - was heavy with the missing of, and all the anticipated missing of, my boys. My body was / is having a hard time digesting the stubborn fact of separation from the flesh and bone of my flesh and bone. Still, the VHMG was quite effective in the way she moved through the storage closet of my body, rearranging, dusting, clearing out, making room for light.

My practice is my life raft. Every time I come to my mat or take my seat to meditate awareness begins to move through the layers of my body, mind and heart, opening pathways of Light, reminding me I have not been and never will be "left behind" - outside of love. I don't always remember that in the moments of my day. But I virtually always remember it as I practice.


  1. Karen, this is stunning. What amazing young men you've raised. Yet when I see how wise and perceptive their mom is, it's easy to see why. Inspiring writing; inspiring insights.
    Love, love.

  2. Its Charlie's birthday today:) The relationship that I have seen between you and your sons, is a relationship that I dream about for my children and I to have.