I recently returned from a trip to Costa Rica where I spent the day with my new friend Rosa. She exudes a quiet joy and her day is filled with celebrations. As we cozied into the colorful pillows on her couch, our hands wrapped around warm cups of mint tea, birds began to gather in the trees outside her window. She smiled and, lifting her hand, said “Listen! There is music for us.”

Hours later, filled up from our deep conversation and lots of laughing, our tummies were calling to be fed. Rosa pointed to a basket of ripe red tomatoes she had bought at the market that morning.
Do you like gazpacho? 
Yes? Let’s make some!

I prepared the tomatoes while she chopped fresh basil, filling her tiny kitchen with an exhilarating aroma. Holding the first tomato in my hand, I used a sharp knife to slowly carve a spiral of peeling. I slipped the juicy red fruit onto the cutting board, drew the blade through the center, and carefully spooned out every seed. Slicing and chopping, I thought, “Ack, this is going to take a long time”.

Rosa glanced over, clapped her hands and with a giggle exclaimed, Lee, you don’t have to get every seed out. Just squeeze the tomatoes and have FUN with it!

In that instant, I was gobsmacked. I had been so focused on “doing the task perfectly” that I wasn’t aware of the possibility of “having fun with what’s in front of me”. With Rosa’s words, my shoulders relaxed and I felt myself lighten up. From the outside, it looked like two women making lunch. Yes, the gazpacho we spooned into our bowls was delicious.

But I was nurtured that day by so much more than soup.

Rosa reminded me to embrace my inner Maiden–the part of us who is creative, open to possibilities, and delighted by the wonders of being alive.

No matter how many birthday candles are on your cake, your Maiden self is always ready to offer her joy and playfulness. She’s just waiting for you to turn to her and say, “Yes, let’s have some fun!” 

How do you stay connected to your playful, creative Maiden within?


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