How I healed my relationship with my mom

Mother’s day…

It makes me reflect. My relationship with my mom wasn’t always smooth, connected, and enjoyable. Actually for a while it was hard, painful and made me feel very sad and alone.

Mother/daughter relationship is one of our most important one, if not the most. In our early years there are a lot of needs that only our mom can take care of (or that’s the way we live it) and as we grow our relationship with our mom is always a mirror for our development and grow as we evolve into young women.

My life began a little bit rough. My father’s died when I was very young. My mom had to go back to work (that she has temporarily left to be more at home with me and my younger brother), and do her best to raise the two young kids alone. There were many things my mother did in a way I couldn’t understand and that caused me lots of suffering, and for years I blamed and resented her. I felt really miserable and isolated.

I always trusted that in suffering there is a lesson we need to learn. Here is mine:

At some point my level of sadness and unhappiness was unbearable, my soul felt constricted and I felt unworthy and unlovable. I knew that despite the situations in my early life I had to find a way to happiness. I embarked in the journey.

Fast forward many years, after some work in psychotherapy I met life coaching. My coach led me in a deep research of every area of my life, the ones that I wanted to work on and brought me to explore coaching, and the others I wasn’t planning to deal with. The philosophy behind this was that we can author our life and live it at its best by dealing with each area. So it came the time to deal with my relationship with mom.

In a way I’ve always felt a victim of unfair treatment, of selfish decisions, negligence and lack of love. I have plenty of stories that I’ll talk about in my biography (oh, here she’s again, the victim voice!). It was through coaching that I was able to see:

1-    Where I had been identifying with a victim role, blaming and condemning my mom.

2-    Define the relationship that I would like to have with her.

3-    Understand the steps I had to do to get to that relationship, and take them!

4-    Have the difficult conversations that will pave a smooth communication, understanding and compassion, I eventually what I really needed to hear, that she loves me.

One of the key things in all this deep process was my ability to get out of my shoes and get into hers. Once I saw her story, her relationship with her parents, with my father, her expectations and dreams, her circumstances, her pain, her desperation, her humanity I was able to understand that everything she did was her best within her circumstances, far from perfect, not what I needed, but her best. At that point I experienced a very humble opening in my heart and understood the meaning of “compassion”. It was through compassion that I was able to forgive, let go of the past, and embrace the possibilities of a better, healthier and more connected relationship.

One of my first difficult conversations was to sincerely ask forgiveness for so much judgment and resentment. That was a very moving night. We ended up both crying, something my mom had been very resistant to, but that conversation was very powerful as it melted walls of ice between us. From that point on, I’ve been practicing sharing more of what I need and what I feel, and being more loving for my mom. I was able to get into a new role, more receptive, allowing space for my mom to show up and love me the way she can, and allowing to be ‘taken care of’. I found myself surprised having very deep ‘woman’ conversations, something I had believed that will never be possible.

Today, I’m grateful that I have my mom, that I have been able to bring healing to our relationship and that we get to enjoy our bond. We connect, we talk, we laugh, we cry and we say how much we love each other. She’s become a much closer, supportive angel in my life. Through my personal work and growth I came to understand she’s a guide, an ‘angel’ as I call her.

I’m also beyond grateful to my coach who taught me to tackle one area at a time, redesign, have those difficult conversations and hold me accountable to do the work.

Today I celebrate my Mother.

How are things for you? Are there any relationships in your life you need to bring healing into? Curious if coaching can help you? I would love to help. Please check fernandalodeiro.com and schedule a free session with me.

May you fully enjoy your relationships, may you always be able to bring healing to those that matter the most to you.

Love,

Fernanda

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Easter Time Redefined: Honoring the roots and down to my why

Today it is a beautiful very special day… How to start?

It’s a beautiful sunny day and that’s unbelievably uplifting, you’ll see why in a minute.

It’s Spring, the time in the year for new beginnings, new projects, be reborn, blooming, and give birth.

It’s Easter, in the Christian tradition a time for celebration, when we overcome death, time of resurrection, and ascension. Phoenix time!

It’s my dad’s 95th birthday… and he’s not with me… but he is. (It was pouring the day he died and it has taken me a lot of energy to learn to love the rainy days).

Recently, while journeying on my mission path, I received amazing inspiration from a sister. Thank you, you know who you are ; -) That experience has steered a lot of things in my soul and brought tremendous clarity.

Over the many years of not having my dad I’ve gone through moments of need, sadness, happiness, gratitude and almost every other emotion you can think of. I feel we never totally heal those loses but we honor their lives by living ours with passion and purpose.

As I reflected about where I came from I saw a pattern. I come from a family of Inspiring Heroes, people that care about others, that love to help, and empower others. My father was a lawyer, but also was involved in social work and education (we’ll post pictures when I get to travel to Argentina). And, he was a really happy, cheery person, an awesome cook, and a terrific host. Guess where I got it all? My mom was a lawyer (now retired), possibly shy, lower profile, intuitive, very analytical and she says she would advice my dad in some difficult cases and would bring a newer, wider, deeper sight. A great case of partners at work that complement each other. She also pursued many other careers later, political sciences, and later yoga and reiki. She’s been a strong influence in so many ways. She took me to a fitness class when I was 6 years old, her teacher was pregnant and pulled me to the front of the class to teach all these ladies. That day I got hooked up with being in front of a crowd bringing smiles, happiness and health to others, the seed for the fitness instructor and coach in me. After my dad’s death my mom had to go back to work and made a judicial career. She was public defender ( and sat in the office and chair was once my father’s) and later a judge. She was always a go to person for advice and help. You guess also where I got my gifts from. To the point, I come from a lineage of Inspiring Heroes, analytical thinkers, educators, passionate about being of service.

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My family of Inspiring Heroes on our last vacation together. Tandil, Argentina, Easter 1979. (I haven’t written about my Inspiring Hero Brother, but I will soon)

At age 12 I read my life defining book, Beyond Love, and years later I was fascinated by the movie “And the band played on” (still on my top 10 list, because the many jewels it touches on, to be continued…)  These were the sparkles that showed me my mission, to be of help, to do something meaningful for the world. I pursued science with the hope to do big discoveries, that would bring health and heal into the world. Science is amazing, we work at doing discoveries, thinking, we create models that we try to validate or disprove, we ask how what we see in biochemistry might affect predisposition to disease and how what we uncover can possibly be of help for society. Really cool stuff!!!

I’m also an incredible practical, and at points anxious person, I want to see results, I want to have an impact in the world. And if possible NOW! (lol) I’m passionate about health, fitness, nutrition and positive psychology. All things that have supported me in the darkest moments in my life (that weren’t few, I’m a Phoenix). I believe health is a precious gift to carry on our missions. I believe our body is a temple and taking care of it it’s a loving act, because living in a healthy, energized and alive body is the key to create meaningful visions, bring happiness and healing into the world.

I recent years, guided by amazing soul co journeyers and mentors I got deeper in my soul searching and discovered that I’ve always had been a coach. I didn’t know it, it didn’t exist as a profession at the time and place when I had to make my career decisions. But, life is a long time, we can always study more, and new things, change careers, or, as in my case add careers. I followed my bliss, and the doors opened where before were walls (Campbell).

I accepted that I’m not a failure for not being single focused, I embraced my biggest discovery and I accepted my own form of success. I gave myself permission to be ME. I’m a multipassionate person committed to my purpose: to do something meaningful, from the bench and into the world. In this journey I horned my gifts and skills by becoming a holistic health coach, life coach, fitness instructor and yoguini. Hey, what an open minded scientist!!! And it feels so good, hell yes, to complete alignment!

So today, on my dad’s birthday, in this Spring, in this Eater, in this beautiful sunny day I’m giving birth to a new project, a new era: Being the Coach. A time to honor where I come from, my roots, my lineage and my mission. Let’s leave it clear, I don’t think it’s up to me to fulfill my parents missions, I think they have already done a terrific job. This is my mission. From my Inspiring Heroes and for my Inspiring Heroes. And as I pray every morning: Thanks for all the gifts, the life experiences, the co journeyers, guides and mentors. May I be of help, may I do something that can make the world a better place, may I use my gifts for the better, may I leave every interaction having been kind, caring and empowering for the other person ( and may I not be stressed out to miss the opportunity!).

By the way, in doing all this, I’m rewriting my life and the calendar. Easter will no longer be a sad time, It will be a time of celebration, honoring my roots and the birthday of a new beginning. My husband has been immensely supportive in this calendar rewriting adventure. As you can imagine when somebody is absent in your family, holidays can be tough times. We met around Thanksgiving, we married just before Christmas, Father’s day become about celebrating my awesome husband and less about my father’s absence, and now Easter, and Dad’s birthday, becomes a time of birthing a new project.

Ladies and Gentlemen, without further ado: FernandaLodeiro.com

With Love and Purpose to all my Inspiring Heroes: Welcome home!

 

 

New openings: how to let them unfold in front of our eyes

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Hello Dear Friends!

It’s Sunday night. Here is my one awesome tip to get ready for a beautiful week: Gratitude. For the last two to three years I’ve been working in developing a deeper sense of Gratitude, and the tool I’ve been using is “Count your blessings”. Over these 2 and a half years I’ve been counting countless of blessings. As I got better at it, I saw a huge shift in my levels of happiness and appreciation and also I saw several relationships improve as I approach each person I come across as a kind human being that has a lesson to teach me. At the beginning I would count 3 blessings a day, but soon I started writing long lists of blessing, what a blessing! I filled journals, I shared them, and somebody very special in my life ranked # 1 as far as my statistics go 😉

Having rewired my brain for the good, I allowed myself to count my blessings once a week if things get too busy, and that happens on Sunday evenings. So here are some:

I’m jumping up and down from my vitamin D intake this weekend!!! Spring has set in Happy Valley in beautiful Pennsylvania and finally we are getting some more sun and higher temperatures. Ah!

Today I started phase I of my garden, the mighty greens: arugula, kale, spinach and lettuce mix. The soil was loose because the recent rains and it felt so relaxing to get back in contact with the dirt, oh yeah!!!

Also, a successful experiment: I assembled an Adirondack chair and enjoyed trying it while letting the sun bathe my face, how beautiful.

Despite I wasn’t able to get the dog I wanted last week, I was able to play with my neighbor’s dogs, Chloe my next door dog neighbor barked at me to let that chair wait for a moment to come and play. My neighbor who just got a puppy stopped by to say hi and shared a lot of dog experience that make me feel maybe we can still get a dog. I also talked to my other good neighbor and made arrangements to host an Egg hunt next weekend in our yards. Bottom line: feeling happy about the connection with the community where I live.

I got the enjoy the birds and their tweets, a beautiful sunset and grilled food.

I spent time exercising with a friend in a fun 90 min ride class. Also I got to spent time in a workshop with my fitness family 😉

This week I got in contact with amazing people for my growth and development, and feel very happy to be supported and lovingly challenged.

I enjoyed working with colleagues and students in the lab and being able to provide advice, resources and trust makes me feel very fulfilled.

My husband and I have been going through moments of vulnerability for different reasons and independently of each other. We’ve been supportive and encouraging to each other and as things are resolving for each of us we feel blessed and get to share the joy. Also we got invited to visit an aunt and spend time at a beach. Sweet! Love and family and a vacation week, at the beach!!!

As I reflect on these blessings, I see that the key to all is setting a clear and powerful intention: I choose to see the blessings, I choose top create sustainable happiness. As we do so, it seems there is always more to come and I usually find myself astonished in front of some unexpected blessing, opening in front of my eyes, sometimes even without my intervention, if that thing exist… (I actually think we intervene by what we put out)…

As this beautiful flower I found in my garden that maybe somebody else planted before me….

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“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom”. Anaïs Nin.

Can you see life through the gratitude lenses? I encourage you to do so. I bet you’ll start seeing more and more openings in front of your eyes, and blessings blooming in your life.

Have a beautiful week!

How to accept vulnerability

Hi Friends!

I’m working on a beautiful surprise this Spring!!! You’ll have to keep coming back and check the progress. I’ve been working for a loooooong time on a lovely project. As I’ve been sharing in previous blogs recently a lot of things have been clearing up for me and, in part is the result of a life long vision I’ve been nurturing. Ah! It feels so exciting, but you have to hold tight in there. I’ll have more news soon…

Spring- sprout

When it comes to connecting with people on internet as we write blogs and put ourselves out there being totally honest and showing up from a vulnerable, authentic place can be freaking scaring! I wonder, how much should I share so we can really connect, what people might be interested in reading, what can I share that can be interesting and valuable to others, can I add a little something to somebody’s life? And you might be wonder why do I even ask myself these questions. The truth is that it is part of my purpose. Recently as a homework exercise I asked my friends “What is some unique characteristic of me?” They answer optimism, lots of energy, charisma, perseverance, ability to find a way around challenges, intelligence and under the skin a very vulnerable and sensitive person. You can tell these are my friends! They know me well, and what they listed are my unique gifts. At first sight I can seem quite energetic and driven but the truth is I AM a very sensitive and vulnerable person. So, when it comes to online connection showing up from that vulnerable place feels a little weird. I’ve been really pondering around this since I started blogging earlier this year and finally, as a result of my personal work, the nourishment of my mentors and my support of my sisterhood I came to terms and accepted vulnerability.

I accepted that being vulnerable doesn’t make us weak but stronger, because it makes us overcome our ego and need of external acceptance as we accept ourselves, from the inside out. In taking that risk we connect better with others that might also be doubting on how to show up. We might actually inspire others to trust and be also vulnerable. Everybody in the bottom of their soul have a place of sweet, tender, pure vulnerability, and connecting with that place bring us more self acceptance. I came to a point where I get to trust the opportunity to be who I really AM, because from that place I feel I can enjoy deeper, more valuable and fulfilling connections and bring the same to others. This is what I’m nourishing and it will come up soon as I work on my website. There you’ll be discovering more about my purpose and how I’m working on birthing this project. Just a glimpse for now, it has to do with those gifts I mentioned above and how we can share them with others. Stay tuned…

Wishing you a lovely week full of self acceptance and maybe… vulnerability…

 

 

 

Happy Spring!!!

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In the North hemisphere the calendar announced Spring. It still feels cold in the northeast part of the US, but we are getting closer 😉

This week I reflected a lot about my feelings for Spring. It’s in a way quite different to the South hemisphere. There, Spring starts in September and it coincides with the student’s day. Yes, we have one for that in Argentina. I remember when I was in high school in my hometown, there was a picnic celebration in the park. Later when I lived in Buenos Aires there still would be a picnic in El Rosedal, at Palermo. Spring is a time for celebration, coming out of the hibernation, getting ready to enjoy spending more time in nature.

Somehow I like it a lot in the North hemisphere. You start the New Year with so many projects and resolutions, hopes and dreams. As we hit March days become longer, day light saving time begins, snow melts, birds return to the area and little by little it starts feeling warmer. It’s just such a perfect boost of energy! A time to re-evaluate what is going well, where we can put some more energy, where we need to bring more vision, and where we need more actions, all while we stay committed to our dreams and mission.

This week I enjoyed being more relaxed, still excited about my projects, but at points I doubted. Am I really going to make this happen? Am I totally committed? Is this really part of my mission? Is this what I am supposed to do? We all go through these moments, in which what we were longing so madly for becomes available and then we doubt, and we start asking all these “really” good questions. Really?

Really, it is like asking for certainty, for security, for safety. Yes, we do need that. But we also need a little bit of variety. We need significance, and we need love and connection. We need to find the balance between having our needs fulfilled and living at the edge of our comfort zone, where we experience growth and purpose. Of course I would have not made it up to here if this wasn’t my ‘real’ path. I wouldn’t have had the life experiences, the guidance, the mentors I have had if this wasn’t my path, really.

So as I shake the winter off, I reflect what a better and more beautiful time to get to the edge of my comfort zone AGAIN than this Spring?

Sunset 2013 copy

After work, as I enjoyed the warmth of the Sun in my face while admiring a sunset I promised that I will continue to conquer the always changing edges of my comfort zone to bring my dreams to reality. It will require work, optimism, trust, dedication, and energy, as always…I welcome the warmth and energy of this New Spring to bathe me, nourish me (and pump up my mitochondria 😉 as I keep walking my path, bringing up the gifts I’ve been given. I must do it, and I will.

How is it going for you? What is this Spring bringing up for you? What is coming up for you wherever you are? Leave comments!

It is my wish that this Spring brings warmth, light and blooming in each area of your life. Happy Spring!

Permission to be me

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This was a liberating week. Things are unfolding magically and it feels good. My Green Card was approved and that feels really great. I came to the US 7 years ago as a postdoctoral scholar. My experience as a researcher has been terrific. I remember when we came, it was such an adventure!

I defended my thesis on a Friday (April 13th) and 2 days later, yes 2, we got into a plain, with 2 cases, and 2 cats, the 2 of us (my husband and me). We left a lot behind, an empty apartment to be rented, furniture in my mom’s house, boxes with books, music and personal treasures, but more painful, our friends and family. Adventures are like that: lot to win but you need the courage to move forward. We arrived to a basically empty apartment, with only a bed, a desk serving as dinning table and 2 chairs. We had made arrangements with another postdoc leaving town to sublease from him. First thing we experienced was kindness: he has left for us clean sheets and throws, and few cooking utensils. When you come from miles away with only what would fit in two suitcases, this was a really kind welcome.

Soon I started to work and made friends from the University, my husband got his work permit and started also working at PSU. Life has been rolling. I kept my job in the same lab, my husband got into a new lab, we worked and studied about what we are passionate. Friends came and left, we keep in touch, we have friends from around the world, we miss them, we missed our friends from Argentina, we miss our family.  Some members have come to visit, we’ve visited also. At times it was more difficult and surely, we owe a visit to our country. We moved and love our new place. We got a little bit more of stuff to feel at home, the plants grew bigger, so did the cats, we gardened at the community garden at PSU, we cooked our own food, we learned about culinary and medicinal herbs and we took care of each other when we got sick.

Seven years later we are much more established, we love the area, Happy Valley, we made local friends in addition to our academic, mostly international friends. We have started to feel at home. We love our work, the area, the people, how things work. And we just got the Green Card, the permanent residency card. Things become nicer. We have some privileges, and a little bit more of stability. It finally feels like I have now permission to be me, to be whole. Not just the scientist, but all what I AM, the friend, the mentor, the teacher. Travels become easier and smoother, and we feel a little bit less foreigners. I know all this will reflect in a better version of me, a more grounded, more relaxed me.

Somewhere, deep in my soul, I feel excitement, gratitude, and peace. I feel freedom and permission to be, not just the outsider, permission to be who I AM.  Have you ever felt like this? Could you resonate? Please share a comment!

I hope wherever you are you can feel free, grounded and happy.

Have a beautiful week!

 

Spring break is here!

Yes, we are in March, already! And school heads to the Spring break. Not that research stops when classes stop for the break, but I’ll take it. Spring break is a week break in classes in schools in the US (not sure if this happens around the world). Students go back home or travel, sometimes abroad to enjoy one week, recharge batteries and return to finish up their semester. I guess professors, instructors and teachers also enjoy this break. In a town which activity happens around the student life and the sports associated with that Spring break is felt by all.
The cafeteria closes earlier, the University gym has an amended schedule and everything feels calmer and slower. It feels almost like an invitation to take a break as well. As we get into the year and some projects start to pick up, we start new projects, we get excited about the so close Spring and what we would like to do in our gardens and homes it feels good to take a moment and have a “break”.

I see this break as a good time to quiet the busy mind and reassess and if needed recalibrate. How am I doing? Where am I with my goals? How is my research going? Am I on track? Do I need to redirect laser focus to an specific area? Do I need to catch up with some reading? And what about in general, do I need to put more energy in some area? Am I still sticking to my New Year resolutions? Have I fell off in any area where I need to recommit? Am I making time for the important things in life? And the list keeps going…

Many times we rush, we do, we attempt, we try again, we keep going, we stress out, we burn out and then, we are too drained to have good performance and enjoy what we do. Hey, of course a break is a great idea. But it doesn’t have to be a trip to the beach, although it would be nice 😉 What about just taking a little bit of time to breath slowly, enjoy the calm around and take a look at how things are going? For me that is super valuable. I know Spring is around the corner, days are getting longer, saving time begins this weekend and we have an extra hour of light on the evening. With more light I always feel I have more energy. Perfect timing to go within, check how are things going and recalibrate as needed so I can better enjoy this surge of light and energy. In the mean time I get to enjoy the birds singing, the above freezing temperatures and getting home to see the sunset. I take this as my Spring Break!!!

Have a beautiful weekend and, if you want, Spring Break as well!Image

A THON weekend

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This weekend here at Penn State it was THON weekend. THON is a two-day Dance Marathon that takes place every February at the Pennsylvania State University in University Park, Pennsylvania, United States with the purpose of raising money to combat pediatric cancer. It was started in 1973 by the university’s Interfraternity Council, and in its first year, more than $2,000 was raised, with 39 couples dancing for 30 hours straight. Today, it is the largest student-run philanthropy in the world, by involvement and revenue. This afternoon we learned that $13,343,517.33 have been raised at the 2014 event.The money that is raised is donated to The Four Diamonds Fund, a charity devoted to defeating pediatric cancer through research and caring for patients at the Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital. 74% of funds are transferred to an experimental therapeutics fund while 12% of funds are used for patient and family support. In 2011, the Four Diamonds Experimental Therapeutics Endowment was funded to a level which enabled the Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital to recruit two physician scientists to the Four Diamonds research team. More than 15,000 students get involved in THON each year, organizing it and raising funds with the rallying cry, “FOR THE KIDS!”. (See a picture at the Daily Collegian http://www.collegian.psu.edu/news/campus/thon/article_4a3dd514-9cb2-11e3-9f28-001a4bcf6878.html?mode=image)

Friday night as I was leaving work I saw a crowd of students running, heading to the stadium where THON takes place. I got chills and watery eyes. I felt so inspired by the passion and dedication students put in this project. Every single student I talked over the past few weeks were absorbed and absolutely dedicated to this project. Students gather all year around to go canning for this cause, they work on letters and postcards for the kids and their families and they take radical care the previous days to endure the 46 hours dance, no sitting, no stopping, no quitting as a way to show support to the kids and families in the cancer battle. I couldn’t be more inspired by this community. It is amazing what can happen when inspired people come together for a bigger cause. I love this community!

I had my little THON weekend as well, things to catch up, yoga class I wanted to take (themed to THON, thanks Kristen!), studies and reading I wanted to focus, time to connect with my husband and to self care to be able to keep up. It felt like pushing myself a little bit out of my comfort zone, stretching myself in a way, but yet trying to stay resilient. Stretching without breaking. What does feed that endurance, and resilience? I guess in my case is passion, knowing that afterwards there is that feeling of fulfillment, for me studying is about that, grasping and incorporating something new, becoming richer in a way, more resourceful, have more tools, finding answers. Yes, at times it can be tiring, even exhausting, but when I think about the students dancing for 46 hours non stop, who am I to not stretch enough so I conquer the edge of my comfort zone? I loved a metaphor I heard this weekend in a yoga class, stretching to the edge, and it can actually be fun and playful, and we can discover new places we didn’t before, and that’s really cool!

So, after THON weekend, we all need a little extra rest, self care and relax to begin a new week, hopefully still energized but most importantly inspired to keep chasing dreams, making discoveries, unraveling the secrets of nature and of our intricate lives.

Happy Sunday and have a beautiful week!

Valentine’s day: BE Love!

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Hello Friends!

And of course, as everybody is talking about, Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today I want to share how I decided on my career path in science, it has to do with love. One summer day when I was 12 years old I went to my home town public library to borrow a book. After brief talk and few questions the librarian handed me a book that has just made it there: “Beyond Love” by Dominique Lapierre. At the beginning I thought “Oh, another novel for girls of my age”, and she picked on that and said, “This is different, you are going to like it”. And she was right, as I devoured that book over the summer I discovered my purpose in life.

“Beyond love” relates the work of Mother Teresa and her sisters with patients at the boom of the AIDS epidemy, doctors and nurses trying their best to heal the victims of this new evil, and the fierce fight in the labs that led to the discovery of the causal agent of the disease, the Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV). The story left me with a beautiful lesson. The people that were doing those jobs were really being love. I knew that book was the master piece that would guide my life, like a map and I knew I had to do something meaningful, beyond earning a salary, something that could help others and make a difference in the world. And needless to say, I fell in love with science, it was only because the virus was discovered, that it was characterized and that drugs targeting the virus were produced. Fast forward thirty years from the discovery of HIV, patients can have a much better life, there is a treatment, there are patients that test negative after treatment, there is prevention, and there is hope, because we “know” something new, something we didn’t before. That’s the power of science!

As I followed my passion in my life, I debated whether to be a doctor or a biochemist or a geneticist. Eventually I studied biochemistry and got my PhD. My research involved molecular virology and more recently gene expression in mitochondria. Both areas are fascinating. I continue to work with the hope that I will make a difference in the world, and this is a tough job in basic science because it takes lots of work and time to discover the secrets of nature and translate that into applicable knowledge. Yet as I get more mature and dig deepest in my soul I came to realize that the driving force is LOVE.

Today is Valentine’s day in the US, and the world tends to mimic this day. A great day for many industries and a devastating one for some who are single or struggling in a relationship. I used to struggle on this day when I was single because wherever I would go I would feel I was the one no fitting, the one that was single… I know there is a lot of people out there that are wiser than me. Anyways, I wish somebody had told me at that point what I now remember: that I was not alone, that LOVE is something else than going out for dinner, eating chocolates or receiving gifts, that we are always guided, that we keep finding mentors that teach us and facilitate our growth, that love is something different and is always with us.

They have made us believe that love is something you get, you give, you buy, you deserve, or you don’t deserve, you exchange, you trade, you manipulate people to have it, and so on…

What if… LOVE is within us and we ARE LOVE. These are the teachings from the biggest masters in the history of humanity, aren’t these? Why do we forget?
I think my discovery of my passion for science is about that, discovering that I AM LOVE and that my call and purpose is to BE LOVE. I regularly ask myself how can I be more LOVE in my daily life, with my family, in my environment, with the people I interact daily, in my community? Where can I be more empowering, more supportive, a teacher, a better mentor, where can I leave from my interactions having made a positive impact in the other person, how can I make my research more meaningful? Where can I be more LOVE?

So here is my gift for you today, tonight watch the full moon, and know that we are that, full, pure love, and celebrate! Either way, whether alone or with others, celebrate that you are LOVE and you can bring LOVE to whatever you do. The world needs it.

BE LOVE! And Happy Valentine’s day!

Fernanda

White clear: Mitomom

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Hello Friends!

It is one of those days… when starting to write was a little bit challenging. With Internet becoming the blossoming garden of information and independent ideas one tends to get trapped on “What should I say?”. Back to the lessons from the mat (https://fernandalodeiro.wordpress.com/2014/01/17/succeeding-with-new-years-resolutions/) I found myself with these limiting beliefs, “I don’t have anything ‘new‘ to say”, or “that topic as already been discussed”, you know… we’ve all been there.

I’m in a moment in my life where I need to find clarity in a couple of personal issues. I’m blessed to have the right mentors as I like to call them, lovely, compassionate and kicking-a…. agh! (not sure if it’s within blogging etiquette) angels that want me to be happy and are amazingly supporting. Yet clarity comes from a very deep place, from the soul. As I’m trying to connect more with that Inner Guidance I’m much more open, and ask and listen.

Today, in my morning meditation, I set the intention to find some clarity. Despite the meditation was focused on peace, I brought my intention and trusted that peace will allow for clarity. (By the way, if you are looking into starting meditating or want a twist in your practice, check out Davidji at SoundCloud for the most soothing and lovely voice and beautiful meditations, it’s also free. https://soundcloud.com/davidji). A couple of associations happened during the meditation and I got some clarity. White clear as the snow covering Happy Valley (yes, the spring promise was just a promise, I told you, we have long winters, and this one is harsh. See picture…) it came for me Mother and Mitochondria.photo

Mitochondria are kind of ‘mothers’ in a way, a symbolic way, and with all the respect and love to the caring and loving fathers out there (you are the sweetest ;-). I made this analogy: that despite mitochondria are thought as ‘one’ organelle they are an extensive net spread over the cell (https://fernandalodeiro.wordpress.com/2014/01/17/succeeding-with-new-years-resolutions/) like a super multitasking mother. They nourish us with energy they make out of what they are provided, they have a complex and efficient way to clean and get rid of free radicals that can damage us, they talk back to the nucleous to inform adjustments that need to be made to keep things running smoothly (there is a fascinating area of research going on known as Nuclear-Mitochondria Crosstalk). Mitochondria are maternally-transmitted, meaning they are transmitted to the progeny only by the mother (when the spermatozoid fertilizes the oocyte it contributes the nuclear genetic material but doesn’t bring mitochondria, with few exceptions). Mitochondria are pretty amazing providers and caregivers, like mothers in a way. I also reflected about my mother and the many ways she has been and continues to be loving, caring, supporting, and my ubber special genius guardian angel. Maybe I should start calling her Mitomom…

I know the topic of mother can be a hard one, not everybody had a beautiful experience with this. I hope whatever is the situation we can focus on the good things we got out of our experiences, and acknowledge where else outside home we’ve been “mothered”, loved and cared, and where we can do the same for others. Life is not perfect, it’s life, and we are here to be happy, no matter what.

Wishing you a beautiful week.

Love,

Fernanda