Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Assuming and missing out

“The tree looks great, it is located in a perfect spot, by the river bank where lots of animals habitually come to drink water” – I say to myself with conviction. “Look at those branches, they are just perfect, not too high not to low, and wide enough to hold all the weight!” – I completed with anticipation.

“But where is it? Why is it not resting on the tree after having a succulent antelope for dinner? Maybe it is hiding in another tree and having a good laugh at me?” - I said with irritation. Then I immediately started to scrutinize all the trees in the river bank, convinced that I was going to find the leopard in one of them. I knew I couldn’t be wrong since I was thinking like a leopard and have no doubt that this was the place an astute, dangerous and successful leopard will choose.

Two hours passed by, then five hours passed by and no leopard to be seen close by… I could not understand what went wrong; I have taken all the facts into consideration, thinking and behaving like one. “So where is the damn leopard?” – I hastily exclaimed.

Feeling very let down I started the car and began to head back to the Lodge, still refusing to accept that I spent my day looking in the wrong places. But just a mile away from the Lodge, I spotted the sneaky leopard resting under the thick shadow of an acacia tree by the main trail. Without believing my eyes, I rushed toward the place and without thinking twice stopped the car and in anger said: “I was looking all over for you! You wasted my whole day because you decided to rest in the wrong place!”
“Who says this is the wrong place?” Replied the leopard, completely ignoring my fury and without moving an inch.

Well, if I were a leopard I would have chosen to lay down under a nice tree by the river bank, with a perfect view of the animals that come down to drink, so I could carefully select the one I will be having for dinner. The place will be concealed enough, so very few smart tourists can find me and disturb me with their annoying will to take pictures of me. Believe me when I say that you are a disappointment as a leopard… you are having a siesta a mile away from the place full of tourists searching for you. No wonder I couldn’t find you!” – I ended saying with my best sarcastic tone

The leopard raises its head and with a strange glow in its eyes says: “You believe you know better than a leopard, because you try to wear my skin and walk in my paws; therefore you’re convinced a leopard must be as you assumed it has to be, based on your perception of what a leopard should be. But that is still your own way of seeing things, so don’t get the idea that most things are the way you see them. Laying here seems a very smart leopards’ idea, so far many humans have passed by my side without noticing me…. just like you, they all assumed they were leopards”

© 2010 Gabriela Abalo

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Is victory always worthy?

There are times in our life when victory is at our finger’s tips, ready for us to claim the prize, but then we freely choose not to be the winners. Those are the moments when we realize that winning isn’t everything in life if the prize to be paid implies tearing down someone else. Because when we do so, victory doesn’t taste the same and our heart cries while our ego celebrates.
The quandary lies in the fact that we tend to naturally turn every disagreement into a personal fight, where both parties battle with nails and teeth to prevail over. This approach triggers reactions instead of actions, because its ultimate goal is to conquer and defeat. In the aftermath of the combat the winner takes it all while the looser goes down on his knees, crashed and resentful. The harsh words spoken during the battle only leave crawling broken hearts on the battlefield of relationships. Mending the damage caused isn’t easy at all; even the winner has been wounded and his/her victory has a bitter taste that takes away every possible unresentful joy.
Choosing not to win even when victory is probable is not done out of compassion or foolishness but out of something way beyond the need to win. We must be brave as we need to shutdown the fear of not knowing what will unfold. We need to detach ourselves from the idea of loosing or winning and instead look at the bigger picture with an open heart. And last but not least we need a bit of craziness as it means going against what logic tell us to do. All this shall be done with the understanding that not winning is not loosing since both parties at the end are benefiting from this selfless action. Doing so brings an opportunity to experience the magic of unconditional love and its blessings when applied well.
When disagreements are handled with mutual respect and love, all parties involved blossom with positive changes. When the goal is to come to a common understanding there is no need to fight as the need to prevail is not there.
So, next time when you find yourself involved in a disagreement, ask yourself: “Am I fighting to reign and prove a point? What’s driving me, my heart or my ego?” Let you heart guide you and wear your challenger’s shoes, and then if you are in it to prevail and please your ego, do something out of the ordinary: agree to disagree and let it be.
Can you manage that?

© 2009 Gabriela Abalo – Author

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


I complained about my job day after day, but did nothing to make it interesting or look for a new one.
I complained about my shape and size, but I didn’t eat healthier nor did any exercise.
I complained about not having enough money to do everything I wished for, but did nothing to do what I could, with what I got.
I complained about my friends, but didn’t try to love them they same way they loved me nor did I try to nourish our friendship.
I complained about you and me, but did nothing to appreciate what we had.

I complained about so many things, but did nothing else than just complain about everything

Now I’m complaining for complaining and doing nothing else than complain…

I’m depressed, jobless, loveless, moneyless and weightless!

I lost weight and changed my shape, not because I’m eating better or doing any exercise, but because I have little to eat and have to walk most of the time.
Money is still a problem, but now is a bigger one, without the job I can’t even complain about doing nothing with the little I used to have… since even that little is gone.

My love is gone, my job is gone and my money is gone… Damn, I never thought I could miss them that much!

Now I’m complaining for complaining and doing nothing else than complain…

But the most disappointing of all, is that I can’t even complain, as I know that for complaining too much I’m where I’m!

© 2010 Gabriela Abalo

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


He notices her as soon as he enters the room, she is standing right and tall, looking straight into his eyes. In a matter of milliseconds a cold sweat covers his entire body, the awareness that there is no escape and no turning back overwhelms him.
There is no need for introductions, a look into her blue eyes is more than enough to get the answers to the questions he may have. Contrary to what he could have expected he is not afraid; she is completely different from what he has imagined. With acknowledgment Jonas leads himself to the armchair close to the window and seats. He is aware that he is failing to hide the sadness overwhelming him, so making a humongous effort he attempts a smile while raising his head to face her.

It is late for any type of regrets, there will be no more performances… his act is over. . Jonas can’t say he wasn’t expecting it, but despite the knowledge he stills had hope that maybe he had more time in his hands…. “I guess I was wrong” he says to himself.

Smiling, she slowly starts walking towards him, the halo surrounding her illuminates her way, fading all possible fears.
Jonas sees her coming to him and unconsciously starts reciting his mantra:

Moments that come and pass,
moments that will never be back.

Touching, heartrending, agonizing moments
Faithful, wonderful, graceful moments
Aggressive, emotive, apprehensive moments
Lively, lovely, joyfully moments

Each moment counts,
Each moment is an opportunity
Each moment could be the very last

Moments to be lived to the fullest,
with passion, enthusiasm and greatness

Moments that come and pass,
moments that will never be back.

Moments, that is all it is…

That is the poem he wrote three years ago, after receiving the news. Every morning he recited it after opening his eyes, every night he has recited it before closing his eyes, every day he made sure not to forget to live by it. It was his way of reminding himself to enjoy the simple things of life, to enjoy each and every moment no matter what… It was his life anthem!

She is getting closer and closer…

Jonas flashes back to the past… He was told he was going to die, that what he has did not have any treatment or cure, it was a question of months… maximum a year. As soon as he heard the news a new energy overtook him, it was his willpower (the one he has lost long ago), he wanted to live, he wanted to be happy and he wasn’t going to allow this problem to spoil the rest of his life, even if all what was left were two days. If he was going to kick the bucket he was going to do it while living life without any auto imposed restraint.

All he knew was that it could happen any time, so all he could do was to make sure that every moment of his life was worth living. He wasn’t going to start jumping from airplanes, nor go crocodile hunting, or saying I love you to everybody crossing his path (especially if it wasn’t true). His approach was different, all he wanted to do is to be fully present allowing himself to enjoy each moment as if it was his very last.

Since then, he allowed himself to feel and express each feeling with passion and enthusiasm; so if he has to cry, laugh, hate, love, be sad, happy, discontent or content with whatever moment he was facing he did it with joy. None could believe he was dying, his authentic well-being took everybody by surprise, none expected him to misbehave.
But Jonas couldn’t care less to explain, he was enjoying his life more than ever, somehow he was convinced that the diagnosis was a blessing in disguise, it brought awareness to him while reminding him that he wasn’t immortal.
It took some time for his family and friends to understand and join him on his joy for life, but they finally understood that he wasn’t giving up, on the contrary we was making the most of his moment and sharing it with all of them.

"After all, each moment counts, each moment is an opportunity, each moment could be the very last for any of us… and this is definitely my very last!" – Jonas says with a smile, while peacefully closing his eyes.

Death reaches him and gently bends to kiss him an eternal goodbye…

© 2010 Gabriela Abalo

Each moment is a place you've never been.
~Mark Strand