Coral’s Healing Room at Coralsblog.com 505-269-9242 iwritetohealmyself@gmail.com I rise early. I go to bed early. If you need me, I will make myself available to you.

Meandering thoughts…all aboard!

Good morning everyone! I hope you had a wonderful Labor Day weekend. Our weekend was nice and we are blessed for sure. For me lately, the struggle is real. I’ve been missing my mom in the worst sort of way . For the last few days functionality eludes me a bit. The tears come in waves and wash over me like a tsunami. The emotions are high and the pain is intense, for the loss of the life I once had. I’ve no idea why this hits me this way. I just know that when it does, it leaves me reeling and praying for my own escape from this life that I fail so miserably to understand sometimes. Missing my mom is the most difficult thing I have ever tried to learn to do. There is no reprieve from the emptiness of the void that my mom left when she died. An abyss that sometimes sucks me in and has her way with me, before she spats me out. I scurry to scrape up my broken pieces again before I collapse in the pain of it all. Losing ones mom is no fucking joke. Losing ones mom is having your very soul exposed to the elements with no protective barrier. Life without the one who carried me in, proves difficult, painful and very out of my reach some days. Yesterday was such a day for me. The pain and the tears and the yearning and helpless, hopeless, worthless feeling of it all. I collapsed under the pressure and shattered over and over and over again from the inside. Thank you Tamara for keeping me safe and fed and for giving me space and for being close. Yesterday is the worst mom day I’ve had in a while. Thank you for holding me through the pain and emptiness of it all. I love you Tamara. Thank you for how you love me. Some day I won’t be such a fucking wreck. I promise.

Coming off a year and a half working with Aiden, I feel a little sad to have our time together coming to a close. I am elated that Aiden got what we all gathered to get for him. Aiden was reunited with his family first and then last Thursday, Aiden got justice! I will always go and visit Aiden! I will always be Aidens to some degree and Aiden will always hold sacred space in my very soul. I am glad that Aiden got what Aiden went to court for and I am honored to have been there with him when he got it. The still shot for channel four really does encompass and speak to the love and support for Aiden and his family throughout this ordeal, and I am blessed beyond measure to be a part of Aidens world! I ask for continuing love and prayers for Aiden and for his struggle with Tracheal collapse, as we build Aiden the perfect new throat. Your love and prayers are the reason that Aiden is celebrating with his family and I thank each and every one of you for loving and praying so, so much! Thank you Team Aiden!!! And if you would, say it with me…”I love you Aiden!!!!!”

As I rework my own schedule and charge myself with the energy needed to see my beautiful clients today, a tear rolls down my cheek to see Aidens name gone from its slot on my roster. The tear is for me, for my missing him and it is nothing compared to how happy I am that once my work completes itself, it lives on forever! I will be forever grateful for the work that I do and for the beings I have met doing my work. Aiden is always and forever going to stand out as one of my clients who has touched me the most deeply. I love you Aiden!!!!!Thank you for trusting me to work with and your family little buddy! I am honored to be on Team Aiden! All of my love this morning for Aiden and his family as they return to their lives before Aiden was stolen.

As for me, I am feeling myself retreating and going within a bit. So much stuff to work on inside of myself. So many unresolved hurts and feelings and emotions that I am purging out my eyes lately. I am deep cleaning this time and pulling out all of this fucking pain. No pain left behind this time. No stone left unturned. The purge before demolition is proving to be a tough one for sure and I am only holding on to those holding on to me also. If you aren’t holding on, I’m going to honor you and your journey and cut you loose before I go out again. The precision and momentum needed to propel us out of this cesspool of shit is going to be intense and we all need to intention some healing here. No child left behind…and yet, each of us must grow up enough to get on board and commit to the journey. Each of us must take a post and do our work…And…we all have the choice to stay or to go. Whatever your choice, we are boarding now and will be pulling out of port very soon. If you’re going to be on board, grab your life jacket and your coffee and head into the healing room. I will meet you in there once I see everyone else off. Everyone else, thank you for your service and best of luck to you in your future ventures. Thank you for being part of my world and for staying the course with me as long as you did. Doors are open and you are free to go!

I feel a little sad to say goodbye to some of you this morning. I’ve been doing all I can to keep you aboard and afloat. The thing is, you aren’t doing anything to keep you aboard and afloat and this ship just isn’t going to go down again like that. If you don’t care more about you and your life than I do, I finally accept that I cannot help you. I am also finally okay with that. My work cannot evolve when I continue to work for people who never fucking punch the time clock at all. My pinnacle cannot be exhaulted if I sit down here on my ass breast feeding you all day long. And so it is, I bid your farewell. With all of my love and prayers, I leave you behind this time when I pull out, to live the life you imagined. All of my love and best wishes to each of you! Bon voyage!!

What a wild world! Truly…what a trip this all is! Sitting in my body, missing my mom out of her body. Loving all of you so much and finally loving me more than so much. Preparing to leave port with a skeleton crew for my greatest voyage of all. My life can be summed up in three words…it’s a trip! Have a beautiful day everyone! I love you! All aboard!!!!

Swimming in a big bowl of gratitude this morning ❤️

Good morning everyone and happy Saturday! I hope you’ve an amazing weekend planned! I want to thank you all for all of your love for Aiden and his family. Love is where it’s at and so thank you!

As for me…let’s see if I can write anymore at all without Aiden or Robin or my mom chiming in for me this morning. I realized when the sentencing came down for Aiden on Thursday, that I have not been breathing for a while. I wasn’t even aware of it. And, I have been breathless way longer than Aiden. The night my mom was rushed to the ER, shortly before she died, I stopped breathing then. I stopped everything then. I stopped living and breathing. I stopped knowing who I was or what to do or where the fuck I was. The night my mom went by ambulance to learn of her fate to cancer, my world kind of stopped too. I’ve been puttering and sputtering along, to very little avail. Seeing clients and hugging…desperately trying to be a good friend and a good therapist and a good human being…I’m always a click off or a step just behind what feels to flow for me. My thoughts and feelings border on the edge of insanity and I desperately try to hold the middle. My love is deep and raging and untamed and inside of me that just feels mostly like confusion on some days.

Lately, I mostly feel that I am here to unlearn what I learned that does not serve me or make sense. To be honest, I am unlearning a lot. I am learning how to share my feelings and my thoughts and it’s kind of scary and intimidating sometimes. Sometimes my feelings seem too deep and too complicated and too far away and I get really discombobulated. Working closely with other people and their hearts and their lives and their stories can be a fine line and so I am learning how to walk it with more grace. Energy work definitely stirs energy and so I’ve been working on grounding myself better and setting up better protection around my own heart. The semi-permeable membrane between our thoughts and reality can be a very slippery slope and I am glad to be riding this one out a bit and realigning to my own center again. I cannot really explain the sensation of the work I do or the places I hold, other than to say that my life truly is a fucking trip!

I’ve learned that I have to fall in love with people and I have to let them fall in love with me. I have to hold them tight in the places where they don’t even want to be touched at all. If you’ve ever been in studio session or animal session with me, you know exactly what I speak of. There is a space in between, a “sweet spot” in our journeying. This spot is undefined and surreal and this is my pivot point. This is the spot that I work from. This is my desk and my work…this is how I lay it all out. It’s all love and love balancing. It’s all isotonic and isometric movements…subtle and intense and true. Precision based and intimate is my work to love us all home. I land in families and relationships and marriages. I become the object of many altercations within the psyche of those confronting themselves. I become the adored and the hated and I ebb and flow in and out of places most people dare not tread. There is good reason not to tread here. Here hearts are wide open and words aren’t needed. It’s deep and murky sometimes and boundaries aren’t clear like they are with words and with physical touch. In this place, it’s up to me to exercise boundaries and decorum and good judgement, to bring us all around to the other side. And so, with that all being said, Thursday when Aiden met justice, I took my first breath since the call that my mom was in that ambulance. My mom will be gone four years in December and my life is finally returning to me now. My thoughts, my feelings and my emotions and my touch with reality have all been affected by the loss of the woman who carried me in to this world and I will never be the same.

I feel myself and my work evolving and I center myself and mind my own breath. I am going to be going into some deep and murky waters and I feel that coming on. My work is taking me into the trenches to pull us up and out of this cesspool of shit that we are swimming in right now. We must know that until something changes, nothing is going to change. Until something shifts, we are all horribly out of balance running up and down our own unbalanced beams. We must slow our roll and intention ourselves into the lives we wish to be living. We are in a tizzy living lives we don’t belong in and doing things we ought not be doing, all simply because we have lost touch with ourselves and our own moral compasses. And…we have a choice. We can be kind and just and fair just as easily as we can be absent, unaccountable and irrational. Our worlds do collide and we can mitigate the impact by simply owning our own chaos in all of this. Anyway, amidst the noise and chaos lie all of the answers to the calm. Inside of each of us there is all we need, to be who we came here to be…and we have reserve to help others to summit too. All that ever really holds us back is ourself isn’t it? An “insular Tahiti ” inside of us all says Dr. Dyer. What are we doing with what we have inside us?

This morning I am grateful to be landing back into me a bit. It was a bit of a crash landing at first and its calming down a bit now. Thank God! Coming back into me and my life after being away for so long has its challenges and my struggle is currently real and active. As I find my own center again and slow us all down a bit to return to ourselves again, I feel a little sad leaving this space. Mostly though, I feel accomplished in knowing that I’ve a sacred job in this world and that God trusts me to go where others cannot tread, simply because I’m willing to go there.

So with all of the gratitude in my heart this morning, I thank Aiden and his family and Robin and her family and my family for trusting me in such sacred and vulnerable space, as I become who I am.

Most of all, to my beautiful and amazing partner, Tamara, thank you for holding me through this storm. Thank you for loving me just the same and no matter what. Thank you for sharing me with those who need me the most. Thank you for supporting me and honoring my work, even when it makes our lives more difficult and unmanageable. Thank you for loaning me out to be what others need in the absence of their others and for dealing with the ebb and flow of me falling in and out of love a million different times with my clients and their humans. There is absolutely nothing easy about this part of my work and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for holding me through the pain and hardship of it all some days. Most of all, thank you for being there when my world smashed into the ground and annihilated me and all that I was before my mom left. Thank you for never giving up on me or on us. Thank you for listening to my endless rhetoric about absolutely nothing, as I simply try to find my way back into the world I left when I couldn’t handle the pain anymore. Of all of the things in my life, you matter the very most to me and I love you with all of my heart and all that I am. I am so sorry that my words fail me with you. I regret that my communication skills are non-existent sometimes when it comes to you and I am working around the clock to hear you better and to speak less. Thank you for holding me through the pain and for loaning me out to love others. Most of all, thank you for always being here with open arms, loving me, when I return from wherever I’ve been.

Thursday was my first breath since we got the call from my Dad that my mom was in an ambulance to the ER to begin her journey of leaving us all behind. I feel like I literally just landed here and so please be patient with me as I find my parameters once again. I feel a little out of sorts so please be gentle as I acclimate again, to the life I was living before my moms heart stopped beating almost four years ago.

If you are still here with me, thank you. If you are not still with me, thank you.

Have a beautiful weekend and enjoy those who share your life with you. Playing soccer with Taos yesterday in Aidens red adidas shoes reminds me of who I am. Waking up this morning, I am grateful to be returning to me. Thank you to each and every one of you for all of your love and prayers and for always dialing up your love when it is most needed! I love you!!!

Aiden writes for his dear friend Alice…..

Good evening everyone! I was thinking I was writing and Aiden corrects me….Aiden blogs for me tonight…welcome Aiden!

Hi everyone! This is Aiden. I am here with my mom and my friends Alice and Coral. Alice is the organizer and inspiration for something very special. Coral is Alices hands and words and so is my mom and Alices mom Janet and Tamara. Those are my closest and innerest circle and Jason too. Anyway, it’s not top secret…it’s more that it’s in planning stages and I won’t jinx it by saying too much like Coral sometimes does. Humans do that and dogs don’t. So I told Coral I would handle this part, as dogs have better decorum than people. Mouths with no words does that. Anyway, I’m pretty important and some pretty important stuff is happening in my life. Soon and now and far away too. Anyway, I’ll start with now. Now is court on Thursday for the guys who stole me from my mom. I need you guys to pray and love us a lot. Dogs rights depend on these decisions. People cannot just take dogs. Court is to say that to the people who can protect dogs and get them justice, so when people take dogs, they get in trouble. Getting in trouble is to say to us to not forget to remember to not do that again. Dogs know this. People forget this a lot. Judges can say in ways that lots of people can hear that if you do bad things, you will have to be accountable. That means you have to take your consequences if you act badly. So, anyway, I don’t know so so much about all of this except it’s my day in court. I am taking all of you guys in with me to love me so high up that the judge sees me, my heart, my mom and my family that got so hurt when I got took from moms car at moms gym.

I have many fans. Today, Coral came to see mom and we all talked serious business and then Coral came back with my friend Alice. Alice was not sick and she didn’t come to see my mom. Well, I think Alice is like a lot of the dogs, I think maybe she is “lovesick” for me. If you know what I mean? She says something about a bucket list and I’m in the bucket, or something. Anyway, Alice had to ask Coral to ask her dad if she could take her in the FJ to see me at work today. Dad said yes and I saw Coral with Alice, her heart all a flutter and her eyes wide like saucers. Alice has been dying to meet me and since today is tongue out Tuesday, it meant so much more to her to meet me on this day. Anyway, you’ll see in the photos…Alice is over the moon. I kept cool though, cause I get this a lot. The ladies…the men…the world…I’m Aiden….I’m used to this spotlight and I share it with my dear friend Alice today. If you guys would, please say it with me…”We love you Alice!” Thanks guys! I kinda like her 😉 Have a great night! I love you!

Love, Aiden

And with that, I bid you all good evening. And if you would, say it with me…”I love you Alice and Aiden!!!!!”

Thank you for the Birthday love! I love you right back!

Good morning everyone! Happy August 3rd! I had a beautiful birthday yesterday! Thank you to everyone who participated in my special day and for all of the calls and texts and messages and posts and love!! You all made my day with your love! Thank you! Thank you Tamara for a perfect day and for spending it with me! I could not be more blessed and I thank each of you for your part in my amazing life!

We went to Jemez and it was spectacular! Jemez and Taos have always been homes away from home. I feel so blessed to have been cleansed in her healing waters and washed clean of my sins and my transgressions. My time is Jemez is always very spiritual and healing for me. On my birthday, I felt particularly blessed to soak in her healing springs and to sit in her flowing river and to let it all just wash away.

At 8:35am, I did my birthday meditation and I wailed and cried as I missed my mom. It was primal and painful and raw. I felt my heart split wide open and shatter, as I listened to Cat Stevens, “Morning Has Broken”, as I do every year on my birthday. This year was different though. This year something broke loose and gave way. Something broke free and dislodged itself and I am so grateful. My birthday was such a big day for my mom and since she died, it has been a horrible day for me. Yesterday was different and I took my day back from the grief that I was hung up in, and celebrated being born and being alive. Thank you to everyone who helped me to do that. Yesterday was a beautiful day and I am so thankful! It is nice to have my birthday back from the depths of the grief that consumed it since my mom left this earth. I love you mom. Thank you for your subtle visits throughout the day yesterday, to let me know you were with us. Thank you Tamara for being such an amazing light in my life and Pilar of strength in my weakness. I love you and I am so thankful for you. To all of my amazing friends and family that reached out for me, thank you for all of your birthday love. Rocky thanks all of you for the birthday love also!

Moving forward in this new Coral year, I am making some life changes. I am going inward a bit more. I am to be contemplative, a bit more. I am going to read more and listen more and talk less. I am going to sit back and observe more. I am going to work harder and play harder. I am going to have a waitlist to see clients and every session is going to be epic and blessed beyond measure. I feel the momentum of my life taking off and I am so happy you are coming with me on this journey!

Manifesting my new work space and opening up to the universe for the clients I can help the most to return to healing and health. Opening up to being of service and to being available for those who need me and being off of the radar of those who cannot of will not help themselves. I have been spinning my wheels for my entire lifetime, helping people who have no interest in helping themselves, and so this year, I vow to only help those who reach for me to help themselves. Studio sessions will be much more flexible and available as I expand and become more flexible in my time and my work. So, all good news for those of you on a healing path forward…we are headed for all of the good things coming and into the light and love of healing and loving and growing into wholeness and wellness and love! I truly do hope that you will join me on this amazing journey forward!

Thank you again for all of the amazing birthday love! I am so blessed to have so many beautiful and amazing people in my life! Have a beautiful Saturday everyone! I love you!

Happy Mother’s Day eve…

Happy Saturday everyone! I am glad to be returning to this space a bit. My life has been a bit unmanageable and I have lost my way. Today I begin again. This morning I wake anew to begin a new day, in the light I want to stand in and share with all of you. Tomorrow is Mother’s Day and so I wish all of you moms a happy Mother’s Day. For all of us with moms in heaven, I send you all of my love. Whether you couldn’t live with her or whether you can’t live without her, Mother’s Day is a rough day for some of us without moms. Moms are human beings, being human, just like the rest of us, with much higher expectations on them, just for being moms. As far as I am aware, moms don’t get a manual when we come into this world, so to each of you who gave it a go, all of my love. Holding dominion over these precious beings in Sanctuary poses some questions and lots of research and I cannot imagine trying to be a mom. Emotions and childhood trauma creep in and being in charge of their wellbeing becomes a lot some days. Worrying that I will do it wrong or miss someone…it’s a lot to remember and to process and to keep up with. So, thank you to all of the moms who take their parenting jobs more seriously than their salaried jobs…to all of the dads and moms who love and support them through the trials and errors and pains of parenting. I thank you for taking your role seriously and for parenting the children you brought here. I have mad respect for each of you for taking a step and filling a role that I never could. Happy Mother’s Day to my mom in heaven and to each of you who are moms down here. I have no idea how you do it and I thank you for doing it just the same. I hope your children do something amazing for you tomorrow!

As for Tamara and I…we have decided to lay low here with all of the motherless beings that live here with us in Sanctuary. No one here has their mom, not even us. We came in with her and then we have to learn to figure it out without her, just like they do. Ahimsa has been here a year…Hondo has been here for two years and is 26 years old. We are all someone and tomorrow will be what it will be for each of us. I don’t know if Ahimsa or Hondo miss their mom…I can’t tell if Brixen misses his mom or if Samuel pines after his mom…I know some days I sure do miss my mom. Some days, not so much…Mother’s Day though…almost every year she was here on earth, I was with her and every year since she has been gone, I have struggled without her. Our moms…we only ever get one…and on this day, I am thinking about my mom. I am thinking of all of my mom friends and I am loving the shit out of you ladies! Truly, I have your faces in my mind and I love and appreciate the work that you are doing and the love that you are teaching our children. Thank you for taking the time, and for assuming the risk and the liability and for having the heart to do what so many of could not do. Happy Mother’s Day eve ladies! I love you!

Tamara sees her doctor on Monday. I am so proud of her for getting through this so gracefully. Truly, take the word cancer, all by itself…just that all by itself…and add it to your face and then imagine five trips back under the knife to clear margins during MOHS procedure and then add 65 external sutures to close her up after reconstructive surgery…no lifting, bending and no increased blood pressure or emotional upset…no laughing or crying or emotion, for risk of permanent damage to her face …no exceptions. Oh, and if she does lift or bend, she could cause permanent nerve damage to the muscles in her face, which could be irreversible. Ya, I am fucking proud of this girl! I am honored to be her life partner and her best friend and her lover. I will ask again, for each of you to send her all of your love and healing energy…your hugs and your prayers…your smiles and your love…this has taken my girl further down than I have ever seen her and I ask you to lift her up with me. Depression is a relentless and needy and obsessive bitch and I ask you to invite her to leave with me, as she has served her purpose here. We are ready for some reprieve from her grasp and we are ready to laugh together again and to work together and to be together again. We want our lives back and so on this day, I invite our sadness and depression to leave us, that we may more effectively do our work in the world. And so it is.

Thank you for loving us through this. We have so many amazing things happening and we have had to place it all on hold while we navigate this. We have a lot to catch up on and I suck at social media, so we want you to know that we miss you. We know we are a bit absent right now and we want you to know that we are healing and will be back very soon! Thank you for holding space and for loving us like a verb during this time.

Have a blessed and beautiful day everyone. Thank you for loving us through this and for surrounding my beautiful girl in love and healing light. I love you!

And I write….

Good morning. Happy Thursday. I have been very busy with Tamara being down and so I have missed you guys. I also just haven’t had it…words elude me and the ones that don’t aren’t worth putting out there, until I sort some stuff out.

I exist in a certain underlying sadness lately. The tears keep rising above the surface. I just fucking hurt. And deeply. I hurt so deeply as of late. I am blessed that I am physically able again, to throw myself into physical labor, for it calms my mind. My mind is my worst enemy and always a detriment to my sanity. My pain has accumulated in my mind and taken over parts of me…parts of me that I will get back eventually.

Depression feels to me like an abyss…dark and cold and black…endless and daunting and absolutely nothing at all. I have spent countless years in this place, not even knowing where the fuck I was. I have always written to help get this pain out. I’ve been unable to write as of late and it is showing in my depression. Writing and physical labor are my reprieve from debilitating depression. Depression also usually shows that my self-confidence and my heart have been hit and they both have been hit hard lately. My heart has not, not been hit, since my mom got sick. And I am the worst at not taking things personally. I am also a pussy…”Oh, I’m so sorry that you read my blog wrong…let me defend myself and explain…”better yet, let me not write at all, just in case you are still reading and offended at what you thought I meant. I have mother fucking lost myself in this abyss. I have resorted to defending myself and my actions and my words, to people who have walked away from me. I lost my way. I lost myself. I lost my fucking voice. I am sad that I did that and I’m glad that I see what I’ve done, so that I don’t do it again henceforth.

So…here is a reminder for us all, especially me…this is Corals blog and I come here to write and to heal. I come here to get it all out and to sort my life out. I come to this healing space, the healing room, to help to heal us all. I do not come here to harm others. I do not come here to gossip or talk shit. I come here to fucking heal. If you think I’m talking about you…maybe I am. Why would that be? Because you are someone whom I love and I’m sorting shit out. I use discretion and I have stood corrected a time or two. I’m good with that. I am not good with being called out using my words, after they have been twisted and mangled and pointed, and having them shoved down my fucking throat. I am also not good with being silent for so long because of it. I have learned in my silence that I will not remain silent…not about things that matter to me.

I have also learned that I will go to the ends of the earth for those that I do love. I have gone to the ends of the earth for people I don’t even know. I know who the fuck I am. I know why I’m here. I am here to love us home. My decisions may not please you and my words may offend you. My existence may annoy you and my opinions may not be your own. Isn’t that okay though? I mean, isn’t it okay to not be for everyone? I have always extended an open invitation to hear how you feel about me and I don’t hear my phone ringing. Not until someone reads something I wrote and starts a fucking panic about what they think I meant. And all of this before talking to me at all. I feel that to be a little unfair and I shut down over it. I put this out there…the most personal things in my life, to help us all to heal and somehow, it turns into a fucking shit show. I pull my blog from Facebook. I stop writing all together. I feel like giving up and pray that I don’t fucking wake up in the morning. I started to give up. I started to think that maybe you all really didn’t need me or my experiences or my words or my fucking love. Guess what though? I need me and my words and my experiences. I need to heal and I come here to do it. Everything that doesn’t serve my highest good…your highest good…I send back to the universe to be recycled for the greater good of us all. I’m not here to harm anyone. I’m not here to be harmed anymore either. Many of you have left my life, for reasons unbeknownst to me. I do regret that you didn’t give me an opportunity to grow and yourself the opportunity to heal, by having a conversation with me. I also regret anyone I ever deprived of such a conversation. I regret denying closure to anyone, who may not have known why I left. Hell, maybe I don’t know why I left. At any rate, if I hurt you that way, or in any way, I really am sorry. A few names and faces come to mind and I’m sure there are others that I don’t recall or that I was not impacted by, as I impacted. I am sorry for the spaces that I left empty and for doors that I slammed shut…for bridges that I burned and fired that I started. Today though…I really am letting that all go. Today, I really am done editing myself and watching what I say and how I say it. My door is always open if you’ve something to say to me. As I have clearly seen…so is everyone else’s door, and I find that pretty unsettling. If you can’t or won’t say it to me, how about you not say it at all? I will offer you the same courtesy.

My life is simple. It has not always been simple. My life is simple now though. I have big work to do and I’ve no time to be defending myself or wandering off into this fucked up abyss, simply because you don’t love me. I wanted you to love me and I wanted you to be who I built you up to be. That is my fault. I put you on a pedestal and I had expectations and when they weren’t met and when you jumped off of the pedestal and slapped me across my face…it took me down. It took me so, so far down into the abyss. I ask why you didn’t love me as I loved you? I know now that you can only love me as you love me. In your way, as I love you in my way. That’s okay, isn’t it, to have our own ways to love?

There is one person in my life who has stood by me through the worst of my days…the deepest of my pain and the loss of my mother and my family. There is one person who never left me or gave up on me, who calls me her wife. There are others also. Today though, in this moment, I speak of my beautiful girl Tamara. Tamara never gave up on me and she never kicked me out or fucked around…she never betrayed my trust or my confidence. This girl held me together when I couldn’t hold myself together, loved me when I couldn’t love me …and always, always gave me a home to come home to. There is nothing that I can say to appreciate the love that Tamara has given me. There are no ends that I would not go, to love, honor and protect her in the same way that she has done for me. Tamara is my girl and my whole world and she may not be for you. And hey, that’s okay, because she’s for me. So, I’ve got her. I love her and I will not ever not love her. Tamara is down and with cancer and 65 stitches and reconstructive surgery to her face…she must be down. Tamara cannot lift or bend over or get her blood pressure up…and if that didn’t send her into the abyss, not being able to do Tamara certainly has done it. Tamara, my rock…the Sanctuary and the community’s rock is down and out. Tamara needs us now and I’m going to be here for her. I’m going to do my best and I’m going to give it all I’ve got until she is better. That is what you do when you love a girl…you fucking love her, like a verb, no matter what, forever and for always. Tamara, I love you and I’ve got you. Thank you for loving me and for getting me. For those that don’t get us, that’s okay finally. We’ve got each other and we are so fucking blessed.

To each and every single one of you who has reached out and showed up and loved us and prayed for us…thank you. Two girls got hit hard and we are laying low to lick our wounds, heal our hurts and our hearts and to lift each other up. We are on our way back and we thank you for your love, understanding and patience as we heal and recover during this difficult time.

All of the animals of Santuario de Karuna send you their love. I’m not as good at keeping up on social media as Tamara is with everyone. We lost Bashful unexpectedly last week and we just couldn’t even speak of it. I went out to tuck the chickens in and she was passed away. This blew me wide open, as I knew Tamara was going to break when I had to tell her. Tamara is a little broken right now and so I ask again for love and prayers. At the very least right now, if you can’t help us, please don’t harm us either.

I hope you have a beautiful day and I thank you for being here with me this morning. I have missed you. My heart has been broken and my time had been occupied. My focus has turned to my girl and to our world and our healing. I thank you for understanding. I love you.

A couple of really important Coral lessons this morning…

Before I begin my blog this morning, I want to address yesterday’s blog for a moment; I wrote about my experience of going off of my prescribed medication, without the care of consult of my PCP or my therapist. I had therapy yesterday and my therapist was not impressed. I will leave it at that. My friend Sigrid asked me to make this clear and so I make clear that, not only is it not recommended to go off of any prescribed medication, ever, without consulting your prescribing physician, it could be deadly. It could have been deadly for me. I cannot say what caused me to sink as low as I did, and to let those closest to me know, that I was afraid that I might not pull through this time. I will say that it likely could have been My abruptly going off of my medication, combined with my chemical imbalances and mental disorders. At any rate, and without exception, please do not ever do as I do. Do not go off of your medication without consulting the person who put you on it. I made and error in judgement, that could have cost me my life. I am sorry and I did not do so consciously or on. purpose. Thank you Sigrid for bringing this to my attention so that I could be very clear about this. Do not ever go off of your prescribed medication without medical consult! Deal? Truly, please hear me and be more responsible than I have been in this regard, okay?

I stepped into her world to save her from our world,

For our world cut her you see.

I crawled into her den to love her because I took her from her den mate.

I licked and nursed her wounds. I held her in her pain. I woke with her in confusion.

We tamed one another. We, entangled in the bear den, just to survive the night. We became one, baby bear and I.

She, feral and untamed. Dreadlocks and fresh wounds. Distant and painful eyes, seeking my help.

And I, with not one knowing of what to do…We, just baby bear and I, and Sam…I called Sam…we had to figure it out.

In the car, she cried. I prayed and asked Sam to crawl back there with her while I drove us home. At home, we got her out together, into the night sky. We stood in the driveway and we cried. We had to pee and we did not. We went into the studio to wait for help.

Feral and frightened and drowsy and confused…cut 12 inches wide open and closed with staples, the bear and I stood weary. We stood that way for a long time. Baby bear cried. Mom cried too. Mala wailed in anguish. I asked Alexa to go get Enya. We spent a LOT of time with Enya. Enya could not drown the cries of the baby bears. Enya could not soothe the broken hearts of babies separated from each other for the very first time. Yes, hearts broke in the studio that night and baby bear and I stood in the not knowing of what we had just entered into.

The hours turned into daylight and the daylight turned to dark. Fourteen times, we saw that cycle, baby bear and I, from a box in the driveway that housed us and kept us warm and safe together. The studio disappeared and the forest was seen through the windows mostly. We saw the forest, through the trees, on daily visits to see Mala Bear and on potty breaks. We saw our friends sometimes. Mostly though, we saw each other. Momma Tamara was a constant companion in the baby bear den and we really missed her every time she had to go.

I sit here now, in the baby bear den, without my baby bear…my new and dearest friend. I sit, not in my studio, for we left it as it was. We, baby bear and I, ran back to our own lives. We hurried to them because we missed them. We could breathe our own air again, and we could shit comfortably in our own toilets again. We could lie in our own beds tonight and we would be next to our true loves once more! Hallelujah!

It was wonderful to be home! Fourteen days and fourteen nights without a girl, well, I was happy to be home! Our bed…you have no idea!!!! Hallelujah! Tamara and I did not share more than an hours or so drive from Santa Fe together, except in passing, for the last fourteen days.

Mala cried and laid in wait for us to come out into the driveway. When Mala saw Nahko she cried and she shook and she broke. Every time we walked away, she broke again. To bear witness to this…to feel this…well, it changed me. It softened me. It broke me too. I shook too. I cried too. I only knew to do for Nahko, what I wish someone would have done for me when I hurt, when I was scared, when I was sad without my brother. I wanted comfort. I needed love. I needed touch. I did not get those things and so I don’t know if I did it right, I did my best, so I did it perfect, says Sam. Thank you Sam. I did those things I never got for Nahko. I loved her my very, very best. I slept in her bear den with her until she fell asleep. Sometimes I stayed after, just to watch her sleep. I fell in love with Nahko Bear and Nahko Bear with me. It felt nice to love so much.

Nahko Bear and I loaded into the Jeep yesterday to go and see the vet. The vet says Nahko looks great! Her healing is amazing! Her staples were removed and she was released back into her life. I returned to mine.

On my way out to a client, I stopped by to lie a moment with Nahko Bear, in she and Malas baby bear den, on my way out. I wanted to check her tummy and give her some love. I missed her already and I could feel she missed me too. We were like old friends, rolling around and laughing together. Mala Bear came to join and I was so happy! Together again, at last. And out of nowhere, Nahko went for Mala and Mala went back for Nahko and I laid in between and kicked them apart. I was stunned at first. I was still on the ground next to Nahko and she went to lick me. It was then that I realized that Nahko was protecting her new cub, as we had switched worlds now. Nahko protected me from her sissy. You cannot know what that is until you know what that is. What that is…that is heartbreak. Tamara has come running out and we separated them. We all came down a bit. I had to go to work. I returned. I fed them their dinners apart. Nahko followed me everywhere. Mala was so sad. I was so sad. I knew what I must do.

As excited and honored as I am to have been accepted as a pack member, I am not. We are not members of their pack. We, if not checked, can fuck up the hierarchy of their pack. We must only ever be, the leader of our entire pack. We must not remain in the role of a pack member. I knew that in an instant and I cannot not know it now. For me to be so moved, to have been chosen, would destroy a sisters bond. I have become invisible for the sisters to repair themselves and to learn their new places. That shall be between Nahko and Mala. Tamara and I always lead the pack and must never be in the pack for too long. To be invited in and to have to leave…well it mixes honor and heartbreak. The deepest love and loss of that love, on a level that knows no words, that you will ever know, in the shortest amount of time. A beauty to behold and a heartbreaking you’ve not known, until you’ve known it. Even then, every break is a bit different.

So, in the baby bear den, not yet returned studio, I fight back the tears this morning. Fuck it, I let the tears fall all over my screen this morning! For I miss my baby bear. The den is empty and I must be invisible for a while. My heart breaks down here this morning, as I pull back from one of the greatest loves that I have ever known, to allow the love that belongs, to be…between sissy and sissy, baby bear and baby bear. I am not a baby bear, although it sure was nice to be an honorary baby bear for fourteen days and fourteen nights, in the baby bear den I made for Nahko Bear, under my drafting table in the studio.

Sometimes, when we love someone the very most, we must do the very hardest work of all. We must love them enough to take our hands off of them. We must let go and let them do their work. After finally being invited all the way in, we must quietly and gracefully bow out. As I do this this morning, my heart breaks and I ask you for your love and prayers for Tamara and I, as we do this dance again. This dance if getting so close and pulling back. Most of all though, please send all of your love and prayers to Nahko Bear and Mala Bear that as they return to their world and we return to ours, that they find their way peacefully back to each other. We love you baby bears! Welcome home Nahko Bear!

Sherry Lesson about dreaming the dream. Coral And Tamara lesson about living the dream.

Good morning everyone! My post is inspired by a conversation… probably a number of conversations, with Tamara, about building the dream. I know a lot of people talk about building the dream. We have a friend who lives to save animals…a beautiful and devoted and true and wonderful soul…and she has a quote that we use often (I may be paraphrasing a bit)…”You don’t have to win the lottery to save animals. You just have to save animals.” Thank you for this, our beautiful friend. I pull this out of my toolbox all the time! This speaks to us on a soul level, as it encompasses the work we do here at Santuario de Karuna. We save animals. We are too busy living the dream to play the lotto. The odds of winning the lottery…in other words…the odds of you ever living your dream, if you are waiting to win the lottery, are extremely low. You know that though, right? You know that you give yourself next to zero chance of living your dream if you rely upon living the lottery to do so. My mom and Dad religiously bought lottery tickets, as long as they have been able to in New Mexico. I am not kidding, twice a week, as long as they could, for as long as I’ve known, with their “lucky” numbers, they played the lottery. No matter the payout, they had it pen to paper, spent their lottery winnings. Taking care of family, traveling…a place to live here and a place to vacation there…clothes and jewelry and cars….and that is how they dreamed their dream. At the casino, in Las Vegas…the same thing…the odds were low and they just knew if they kept playing, they would be the next winner, and then they could live their dreams. After they retired, they could then live their dreams. My mom was admitted by ambulance to the ER the night before she was to retire, from a job she hated for over 20 years, with stroke symptoms, unable to get off of the floor. My mom did not have a stroke. My mom had stage four breast cancer, with metastasis to her liver, her lungs and her brain. My mom died two months later. My mom never won the lottery. My mom never won a jackpot big enough to fund her lottery tickets or her gambling, let alone her dream. My mom never spent one single solitary moment in retirement. I venture to guess that my mother never spent one single solitary moment. My mom died at 66 years old dreaming about a dream that she was doing nothing to build. My moms dreams were so far out there that she only ever dreamed what it might be like, to actually live her dream. How many of us are doing that right now? Truth. How many of you are living like this right now? Working in a job or a career that you fucking despise, waiting to retire and live your life…trying to win the lottery to solve your life’s problems…and missing your life all together…what kind of dream is that? Any one of these things may be a sign that YOU ARE DREAMING a lot MORE than you are LIVING the dream. My mom didn’t have any idea that she was doing this. This is a Sherry Lesson by the way…Sherry sent this to you, through me, this morning. Sherry missed this lesson and she wanted to gift you with it, especially those of you who know exactly what I’m talking about. If you knew Sherry at all, you knew these things about her. My mom openly said that she went to the casino to escape her life. I never knew what that meant or what she was escaping exactly. Hell, I went with her to escape my own sometimes. I went with my parents to Vegas yearly and I loved our trips. I even played for hours and hours, trying to win and solve my financial woes (by dumping my limited funds into a slot machine…go figure) and I really thought they If I put enough money in, eventually, I would hit the big one. I did not and my mom did not and my dad did not hit the big one. These things were not healthy. Sherry walked around like she had it handled and like this behavior was not at all what it was…gambling is gambling my friends. Sherry gambled a lot, not just at the casino in Las Vegas. Sherry gambled with her whole fucking life…waiting to live the dream, dreaming about it, instead of getting out there and living her dream. This is not to say that Sherry did not live her life. This is simply to illustrate that dreaming is not living the dream. Sherry spent her lifetime waiting to live until she retired and dreaming of living the dream when she finally did. May God rest her sweet soul, and may she finally Rest In Peace…now that she can be free to live her dream, wherever she may be!

We all have choices. I am learning a lot about myself through these Sherry Lessons. I hope that you are learning a lot too. Sherry sends them to make us better, and because she loves to hi jack my blog also! Thank you for the visit and the beautiful Lesson this morning mom. I love you.

So…as I was, before I was so gracefully interrupted…go out and LIVE your dream

Did you know that President Barack Obama was awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between people.”? Wayne Dyer said that having the dream was enough to win the Nobel Peace Prize, because it all starts with the dream. You don’t have anything if you don’t first have the dream. It all begins with a dream. Santuario de Karuna began with a childhood dream…Tamara’s childhood dream. Dreams are US in action. We must act, for our dreams to come true. We must be hungry for our dreams. And…we will get dirty and messy and busy. We will be in constant action. Living the dream is like loving…it’s a verb my friends.

Waiting to live your dream for the lottery or retirement or until you have the money…will never, ever manifest the actual dream. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr….President Barack Obama…Tamara….they had a dream! What is your dream my friend? What is your dream?

Have a beautiful day everyone! Go love and live your dream like a verb!!! I love you!

Five years ago, I stopped eating my friends.

Today is monumental for me, as today is my five year vegan anniversary! Of all of the things I have done in my life…being vegan has definitely gifted me ten-fold and changed me forever. Being vegan is one thing that I do that I know makes a difference and I am so thankful. Today and every day, I am so, so thankful to be vegan!

My name is Coral and I am the Co-Founder of Santuario de Karuna, a vegan farm animal sanctuary in Tijeras, New Mexico. For the last five years, my life has been dedicated to the animals we hold dominion over, on this beautiful land. My life…my purpose…my loyalty…all right here, in this place that I call home. Santuario de Karuna has 44 residents, including Tamara and Myself and countless residents without official living quarters here. Our home is their home and we love and live and heal here in harmony and in Sanctuary. My life’s work combined and scattered as it has been, has led me here…to my home on the mountain. Tamara and I are sober, vegan women who have a dream. Every day, without fail, we get up and live the dream. All days are not easy. Every single day is worth it though! Tamara and I realize that each of our roommates have dreams too. Our beautiful chickens dream of lying in the sun and catching an egg that a raven drops in flight. Hondo dreams of the day that the gate will open and he can free-range upon his mountain yard once again. Sidney dreams of food. Jenny Sue dreams of Brixen. Every single one of us here is living the dream!

Having spent over forty years not being vegan, I will suffice to say that I have learned a lot. I could not live long enough to make amends to the animals that I have disregarded in my life. I could not eat enough tofu in my lifetime to be sorry enough for all of the carcasses I have feasted upon. I humble myself before these amazing beings every day and learn more about how naive and ignorant I was.

Being vegan has softened my heart a great deal. I am a work in progress for sure. I am on the same journey as you are…every day striving to be better than I was yesterday. I fuck up…every day. I learn…every day. Being vegan gives me one thing to know that my heart has allowed me to do right, without any exceptions or excuses. Not being vegan is no longer a choice for me.

For 1825 days, animals have not been on my plate. That may not seem substantial to some people. To me though…to them though…every single time you choose compassion, it is substantial. Every time you make a compassionate choice about what you put in your mouth, to feed your appetite, you make a substantial choice. Did it ever occur to you, as you are driving alone in your car, past pasture after pasture, after pasture, that these beings live and shit and eat and hurt bleed and cry and breathe, just like you and I do? Do you know that their lives do matter? Like I said, I’m learning a lot. At first, being vegan was very overwhelming to me. It really was. I was pretty fucking sure that I would “do it wrong”. Hell, I still do it wrong sometimes. I can’t see a damn thing without my readers on and I bring home something every now and again without seeing all of the ingredients. Fuck, an egg here…milk there…for no reason at all, and we don’t eat it. I just feel a little sad that I wasn’t more careful. I just contributed to their suffering by buying my dead friends. I say a prayer and promise to be more mindful. I am so sorry when I mess up and don’t slow down and honk of them more than I think of me when I shop.

I won’t lie, I wasn’t vegan before I was vegan because I encountered some pretty intolerant and exclusive vegans. They were twats actually. Pretentious and snarky and “better than”….and I ate meat to spite them, if nothing else. Fuck them and their pretentious bullshit! I will just eat another dead carcass and fuck them! Ya, I was pretty un-evolved. I was fucking asleep and full of blame. I will tell you that there’s not a pretentious, snarky, holier than thou, twat in this world that could keep me from being vegan now. My blame about not being vegan sooner is simply because I was not ready. That’s it. Plain and simple. I had not arrived at a point yet where I understood and empathized with the suffering of the sentient beings in my cart and in my living room. I still know some of those vegans. I’m sure you know them too. And we can suffice to say, just “wow”, can’t we? I mean, their circus, their clowns, right? Who gives a fuck what the clowns in someone else’s circus have to say about you my friend? Fuck those clowns man! This is your circus and you are the clown in charge! Own your circus man! Own your circus and set everyone else’s circus down! I am learning this and it helps, and so I pass it on to you.

Being vegan is my choice. Only mine. Nothing you do or say or don’t do or don’t say, changes that. Truly. I’ve not judgement of your journey. You do you and I’ll do me. My journey though…I share it to give you an opportunity to learn what it took me so long to come to know. They are not ours. I will leave you with that. They are not ours.

Have a beautiful day and if you have any questions about what it is to be vegan, please hit me up! I didn’t know until I knew and I was so blessed to have Tamara to ask all of my questions to. There are no stupid questions, only the ones you do or ask. Live compassionately my friends. And remember, if you are the dad, the mom, the breadwinner, the cook, the one paying the bills and buying groceries, you do make the decisions as to what is consumed in your household. Don’t tell me that your kids don’t want to be vegan. Don’t tell me that your husband won’t eat tofu. Don’t tell me that you can’t quit cheese. Bullshit. All of it. It’s bullshit and you know it. “But Coral…I grew up on a ranch.” Okay…you grew up on a ranch, and? You cannot be vegan because you grew up slaughtering animals? And I cannot, not, be a sexual predator then? Right? I mean, if you can’t be vegan because of how you grew up then I am so super fucked, aren’t I? Nope, I’m not fucked because that is a bullshit excuse, just like the rest of them. “My husband won’t eat tofu Coral.” Do you expect me to believe, for one single solitary second, that your husband tells you what to do about anything? Ever? “My wife has to have her iron Coral.” Well, then you better start seeing what is high in iron that doesn’t shit and have a fucking face my friend. “My kids would never be vegan Coral.” May I ask you who is running your household? You or your kids? I do not recall ever, telling my mother what I would and would not eat. Handle your business sweetie. Handle your business. And for those of you who have doctors who have told you to eat eggs and cheese and whatever other bodily secretions and puss and infection and ovulation, For whatever ails you…I will just ask you this…where in the fuck is your second opinion? Truly, don’t act like you aren’t smart enough to question bullshit like that. Don’t make excuses to not be compassionate…Rather, return to the place in yourself that knows right from wrong and step back into alignment with yourself. And my favorite…”Coral, being vegan costs too much.” Being vegan costs too much for whom? For you? Oh…I’m sorry, when you spoke of costs, I assumed you were talking about the 40 pounds of chicken in your shopping cart. I thought you had a bout of consciousness about what your appetite costed them. “Being vegan costs more” is bullshit. Being compassionate will never cost anyone more than living half asleep and unconscious costs us all.

So, to those of you who cannot bake without eggs, don’t think you’ll get enough protein…need cheese…can’t sway your family…I am going to ask you an honest question. What is this really about? For you, what are all of these excuses not to be compassionate really about? If we each start here, we can begin to make conscious choices for ourselves, our families and the people we love the most, the animals, the planet and for our children. Going vegan five years ago is the single most important thing I have ever done to soften my heart. Being vegan is my biggest contribution to the planet I live on. Being vegan changed me for the better and I am so thankful. Today, for five years of compassionate living, with all of my heart, I say thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

My name is Coral and I am five years vegan tomorrow!

I am sitting here in the studio with Nahko on Shawn’s Birthday, and I was remembering that the last time I ate my friends. Tomorrow is my five year veganversary! It was March 9th 2014 and My mom made my brothers favorite meal…my mom made her famous enchiladas. My last non-vegan meal was my moms ground beef enchiladas, smothered in cheese. My brothers birthday meal was my very last non-vegan meal. Five years ago something shifted for me and I want to write about that this afternoon. I didn’t stop eating animals because I didn’t fancy the taste of those enchiladas. If you ever had my moms enchiladas, you know what I am saying. They were the best enchiladas I have EVER eaten! And her birthday cakes…I didn’t stop eating those because I didn’t like how they tasted. I have to tell you that I stopped eating animals because I finally realized that I was eating animals.

My name is Coral and I am vegan. This is my story and I hope it teaches you a thing or two, as my life has taught me, a thing or two. I was so fucking disassociated that I truthfully had not made the connection, that I was eating a once living, breathing sentient being. Ground beef enchiladas did not equal our beautiful cows, Karuna or Ahimsa to me. We didn’t have Karuna or Ahimsa back then. Chicken fajitas weren’t Piñon. Lisa and Janet and Negro weren’t chicken tacos. Bacon wasn’t Sidney. The pork chops that I ate were not named Jenny Sue or Brixen. Namaste wasn’t a slab of ham on my plate and I wasn’t eating the ovulation of Lisa and calling it my breakfast. I wasn’t waiting to slaughter Samuel and Duncan for Thanksgiving dinner. I wasn’t stroking my lucky rabbits foot and making a wish. I wasn’t eating goat cheese on my crackers. I hadn’t made the correlation that all lives matter. I didn’t get that the lives of the sentient beings on my plate mattered at all. I thought they came here for me. I was so fucking ignorant that I believed that these beings came here for my gratification…to satisfy my tastes and my hunger. Five years ago I did not know that my food was actually the Caracas of my dead friends. I was eating dead flesh. I was drinking the bodily secretions meant for baby cows. I was eating the period of a fucking chicken for breakfast every day, with a side of crispy Tombstone. I was fucking asleep! And the worst part was that I had absolutely no idea that I was asleep. Only a couple of months sober from alcohol, I was definitely a hot fucking mess back then. I was so asleep and tuned out that I was about to be on an adventure like no other. I was beginning the journey of waking up…becoming conscious and aware and concerned. I had no fucking idea then…I was about to be transformed! I had no idea that I was so asleep. I could not have known how disconnected I truly was.

Five years later and I will tell you this, I will never not be vegan. I will never eat my friends again. I will never not know what I have come to know. I have come to know that their lives matter. Every single one of their lives matter. There are more carcinogens in the food that many of you eat than there are in the cigarettes that some of you smoke. Did you know that? Cigarettes have warning labels. The 40 pounds of raw chicken that you just bought is going to kill you quicker than the cigarettes are going to kill the Marlboro man next door, peering at you over his oxygen tank. Don’t believe me? Do your research. And now that we are outsourcing our food supply, so you really think what you are eating is safe? The disconnect is real. That 40 pound tray of chicken that you just bought…those chickens were someone. They were someone. All hacked up on a slab of styrofoam and shrink wrapped, slapped with a price per pound sticker and thrown in your cart. We are so disconnected.

We are raising children. We are teaching classes. We are in leadership roles and in animal rescue. We stand in pulpits and we preach peace. How can we rescue dogs and cats and eat cows, pigs and chickens? Your fucking bologna did have a first name. How do we preach peace when we eat the slaughtered remains of sentient beings? We are disconnected my friends. We are so disconnected.

Five years ago, I began to connect the dots. I began to question things that seemed wrong to me. I began to give a shit about someone other than myself. I set down my carne adovada burrito and I ate my last poached egg. I stopped buying leather and I made different choices. I started to give a shit and I mean really give a shit about other beings on this planet. Five years ago I stopped eating animals because I came to know that they are not mine to eat or to wear or to exploit.

As my brothers birthday lunch came to a close five years ago, I could never have foreseen how drastically our lives would shift. I could not have known that I would never eat another animal again. I could not have known that my mom would get cancer in a few months and die. I could not have known that our dining room would occupy another family that they wouldn’t welcome us. We don’t sit at that table as a family anymore. We are not a family anymore. I could not have known that I would be giving up some things and others would be taken from me. I gave up eating my friends. I lost my mom to cancer and my dad to someone and someplace far, far away from me. As I cleared those dirty dishes and washed the carcass of my friends into the trash, one last time…I could not possibly have known how my life was about to change. As I kissed my mom goodbye and hugged my dad under the garage door…as I hugged Shawn and JiSan “goodbye” and I drove away on that day…I could not have known all that would come to be of my life. We never truly do know what life has in store for us. We do run out of time. We do. People feel better somehow if we don’t run out of time…and so they say that we don’t. I am here to tell you that we actually do run out of time. So, make it count. Your time…your decisions…make them count. Be mindful of what you put into your body. If it shits, don’t eat it. Truly. For me, that was an easy gauge. I hope the simplicity of this helps you also, because it is that simple. If it has a face and it shits, it’s not yours to eat.

I am blessed to have learned that animals have just as much right to be here as I do. I am grateful to live in Sanctuary with so many beautiful and sentient beings. You may be astounded to know that I can eat whatever you eat and I can eat it vegan. If it’s not vegan, I won’t eat it at all.

My depression fucks with me a lot lately. I am struggling to stay afloat. Being vegan beings me some peace, as I know I have changed the world for some of them. I will spend the rest of my life fighting for the rest of them. For you see, we are all someone, not something. We each have every right to be here. If my depression takes me, at least it wasn’t someone else deciding that I was food, not friend. Truly, when did we decide that we got to decide for everyone, how things are? We have dominion over…we do not have control or reign or power over those without voices. Who told us that we had the right to crucify species after species after species for our own consumption and convenience? We did. We decided that we have no rules and they have no economic value…so fuck it…we decide. Look at us, deciding and shit. Egotistical, ignorant, insensitive and greedy as fuck…is the mentality that my appetite is more important than your life, isn’t it? I mean truly…that is some entitled and ignorant and ass backwards thinking and we are wrong. Plain and simple. We are wrong to slaughter millions of sentient beings for our own gratification…for sport…for our hunger and our taste in clothing and furniture. We cannot make this right…we just can’t. Excuses abound and generations pile, one on top of the other…doing it the way we have always fucking done it. Let me ask you something…How is the way we’ve always done it actually working for us? How is this entitlement and this superiority working out for us and our human counterparts? All you have to do is look around you to see that this isn’t working at all.

You will never catch me competing with you. Every single day though, you will see me fight like hell to be better than I was yesterday. From whom much is given, much is expected. I owe a great debt to the powers that be for my existence here, for my place and my peace and my work here. The debt can only ever be payed forward and it cannot ever be paid with the life of someone else. We each get what we get when we get it. Five years ago, I got it and I am forever changed. Go vegan. Truly…for yourself, for your health, for the planet…for each other…for your kids. I was pretty ignorant and naive…fuck, I still am…I would like to think that I have made a difference though, for someone, by being here.

Living a compassionate lifestyle includes more than eating a vegan diet, just as being sober means more than abstaining from drinking alcohol. When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change. Friends, not food. Five years not eating my friends has softened my heart and I am so thankful. Five years of learning about the sentient beings in my life and cohabiting them…I cannot imagine how I was ever so thoughtless and reckless and careless. Being more connected now, I shudder at my own disconnect, for I knew not then what I have come to know now.

My life is blessed. I am blessed. I hurt, a lot. Depression keeps me struggling, until it doesn’t. I miss my mom. I miss my dad. Sometimes, I wish I were riding my bike around the block with my little brother, for hours and days on end…going everywhere and nowhere at all. Some days I really do miss my little family so, so much that it throws me into the abyss that swallows me for days. Depression seems to be the one thing I can’t just fucking quit…and every single day, until the day I don’t, I will battle it out. Being vegan has given me a lot of someone’s to fight for and so as best as I can, I stay. As much as I am able, when the calls come and I am needed, I answer. Getting out of me is the only thing that seems to save me at all, in times where I can’t get myself out of the abyss.

Five years ago, I started speaking for them and fighting for them and loving them like a verb. With the love and compassion and guidance of the most amazing vegan I know, I have learned so much. Thank you Tamara for loving me into compassionate space and for helping me to make more compassionate choices. Five years ago my life changed forever. My name is Coral and I am five years vegan tomorrow! For your soul, I encourage you to think about being vegan too. You will not know why you waited so long to assume a lifestyle that does not harm others. Your body will look and feel better. Your heart will open up. You will be better able to look in the mirror…I mean to really look in the mirror. Best of all, no one gets hurt for your appetite. Anyway, that’s all I’ve got today on being vegan. Inspired by my five year veganversary tomorrow…A post for us all to wake up and soften our hearts. Don’t trust me. Go out and try it for yourself! I love you! Have a beautiful day!