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Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

Swaddled in a fuzzy, light blue blanket, the baby finally stopped shrieking. His mom’s demeanor shifted from frenzied to relieved. I asked her if she needed help; traveling alone with a little person who wholly depends on the adult is overwhelming. She nodded and exhaled as I opened her stroller. The young woman’s dark hair covered one cheek, and I glimpsed at her infant’s dimples as he smiled at me. I then thought about giving and receiving. Babies not only give love freely but they also receive (and often demand) nurturing with ease. And I suddenly realized how difficult it … Read More

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The Waiting IS the Hardest Part

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

It is strange that the years teach us patience; that the shorter our time, the greater our capacity for waiting. Elizabeth Taylor The waiting IS the hardest part. Tom Petty, the late musician, nailed it when he wrote those lyrics. Today I pondered this annoying but inevitable part of life. It causes anxiety. It festers frustration. And it generally gets people agitated. I thought about this topic while waiting to board a plane recently. We spent the additional money on “extra space,” which included allegedly “even more speed.” My husband does NOT like to wait. So while we waited, I … Read More

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My Alarm That Disarmed!

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

Has anyone heard the phrase, “ADT! Always there”? I’ve heard it for years. Fortunately, it is often followed by a helpful, friendly human on the other end of the phone. However, I nearly wept with frustration after three alarming conversations in a five hour window!!! It was the night before Thanksgiving. The smell of pie mixed with turkey permeated the house. I joyfully and eagerly anticipated one of my all-time favorite holidays. I somehow fell asleep by 10 p.m., which is unusual for me. Just about a half hour later, we awoke to an obnoxious, repetitive beeping sound. Ugggghhhh. ADT. … Read More

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Grateful For It All

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

How do we live a life of gratitude? It is not always easy. To be honest, I think it’s more challenging than we choose to acknowledge. And being grateful is particularly difficult when we are experiencing detours and bumps in our journey. Yet, that is precisely when a grateful mindset is needed the most. One of my favorite authors is Brene Brown. Her words, research, and writing resonate deeply with me. I recently posted one of my favorite quotes: “WHAT SEPARATES PRIVILEGE FROM ENTITLEMENT IS GRATITUDE.” Brene’s statement is, as always, impactful and timely. As Thanksgiving approaches, I am reflecting … Read More

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My Annual Mammo Meeting

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

I sat, shivered, and waited for my name to be called. The light pink soft but thin fabric barely covered my chest. Grateful for the white, knee-length robe, I pulled it closer and tighter. I thought about sitting in this exact space years ago. A woman with thick, short dark hair sat across from me. We still cannot recall who said hello first. And it truly doesn’t matter! Diana and I quickly connected. I was still practicing speech therapy at the time; this was more than a decade ago. Why is this important? Within the first few minutes of our … Read More

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Ex”fall”iating and Letting Go With Grace

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

Death CAN be beautiful. As I marveled at nature’s masterpiece, these are the words that gently and repeatedly floated through my mind. I gazed at the leaves that lingered on the branches. Red, orange, brown, purple, gold, and green hues formed an abstract rainbow against the pale sky. I continued to walk. The crunching beneath my feet was like a jazz jam session of syncopated beats. Each step sounded different than the one before it. I glanced down and thought about the clear contrast. These leaves were ready. Their time to fall and leave was now. We don’t know, as … Read More

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Frank and Lois–A Forever Love Story

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

Empty cardboard boxes and crumpled newspapers littered the floor. I was exhausted, overwhelmed, and wondering why the heck we moved. I shook my head with agitation as I sifted through junk mail. Then I heard an unfamiliar voice. I glanced toward the end of our brown, peeling driveway. Two twinkling eyes beckoned mine. Before we formally met, I sensed such depth and content from this soul. He approached me with a kind smile and outstretched hands. “Hi there! I wanted to introduce myself. I’m Frank. Welcome to the neighborhood.” He then handed me a bottle of champagne. I was flabbergasted … Read More

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Eli’s Story: Connection, Acceptance, and Living Her Truth

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

A few weeks ago, I introduced the concept of anchors. The first anchor about which I wrote was connection and the second acceptance. Today’s post was originally going to be the final entry in this three-part series. As I often share, life unfolds like an emerging lotus flower. So I pivoted and that piece will be published next week. I sat at our kitchen table with Alec and my husband. Zoe excitedly exclaimed, “Mommy! I am so happy for someone; I just saw a post on Instagram. Can I tell you about it?” “Of course sweetie,” I replied with curiosity … Read More

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Memorial Day Musings from The Beach

Dara LevanBlog, Every Soul Has A StoryLeave a Comment

Salty and tropical sunscreen scents permeated the air. The sand scorched the bottom of my feet as we walked toward the water. But it didn’t matter because my family surrounded me. I smiled as my father-in-law gently asked the man about where we should sit. We unfolded towels and secured the aqua and metal lounge chairs. Zoe, Alec, and their cousins shed watches and wallets. The frothy ocean awaited. Palm fronds swayed as the wind blew through them. I watched and listened while I searched for shells. Orangish-brown seaweed shrouded the beach. And speaking of shrouds, today is Memorial Day. … Read More

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