Flying a Bit Late

I am writing this blog post from the Fort Lauderdale Airport.  I am hoping to fly out to Newark in about an hour from now and then drive home from there.  I was planning on being home by now.  My original flight was scheduled to leave 7 hours ago from a different airport over 50 miles away.  That flight was cancelled.

No, you will not see me on national television, featured as a passenger who was unruly or who caused a riot.  No, I haven’t pulled out the ‘doctor card’ and demanded that I be given a private jet to fly me home because of my status as Dr. Susan M. Featro.  “Everything happens for a reason,” is something my mother has always said.  I am trusting that the universe / God / my Higher Power has orchestrated this change of plans in order for me to a have a different experience.  I believe that we are always co-creating and manifesting exactly what we need to experience…in order to remember who we are.

Sometimes, life doesn’t go as we  have ‘planned.’  One element in my yoga practice is flexibility; just as I strive to be flexible on my yoga mat, I can strive to be flexible off of my mat in the rest of my life.  The quote “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans” has been attributed to John Lennon and to Allen Saunders.  I am choosing to not get wrapped up in stressing over the changed plans and what could have been.  Yes, I am disappointed that I will not get to join my parents and my cats for dinner to tell them about my trip.  Yes, I am expecting that I will be tired tomorrow when I wake up early to go to play the organ and sing at church after getting to bed after midnight.  (For me, 9pm is a late night, so this is a wild thrust into night owl territory.)  But I will not be dwelling in the past or in the future; instead, I will occupy the present moment and show up for my life and see what might be calling me in closer.  Is there something for me to notice here, internally or externally?  Is there a connection with a stranger that will happen and uplift us both?  I am open to it all.  One new experience I’ve had so far in navigating this cancelled flight: using Uber for the first time to get from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale.  I also just ate at the Food Network Kitchen.

In my belief system, none of us are entitled to anything that we ‘own’ on this planet…and as we all are one, there is no hierarchy with anyone being better or more important than anyone else.  I am no more special and no less special than another passenger, and I have no right and no reason to treat inconsiderately an airport employee or anyone else doing his or her job…just because of my privileged status as “doctor” or because of any self-determined extenuating circumstances which I might attempt to justify as trumping others’ stories.  We are all on a journey, and we will all get there.  Sometimes the detours are the most exciting parts of the trip.  I am grateful for the opportunity to show up and to be myself as I take each step…no matter where my journey takes me.  Bon voyage!



While pop music is definitely not what I prefer listening to, a friend recently introduced me to the song “Brave” by Sara Bareilles, and I must admit that I kind of like the song.  The melody and rhythms are pretty catchy, and the lyrics to this song are powerful.


The song begins by pointing to the power of words.  It then continues to encourage listeners to be brave by speaking out and not holding back on what we truly want to say.  In the music video, there are many scenes of people of all ages and backgrounds dancing freely in public places.


I believe that this message of allowing our authentic selves to be heard and seen is important for all of us.  It’s not just teenagers who shy away from being themselves in order to fit in.  I believe that it is a societal tragedy that the majority of people restrain themselves from free expression in speech and movement and action, because they have become better at listening to others than listening to themselves.


When I teach young children, I see how freely they sing, dance, and tell ther stories.  I see how they don’t question how others are going to judge them before they assert themselves into the world.  As they get older, they hear those first words of feedback.  Praise by parents and teachers, correction by adults, or ridicule by peers then influence how they behave in the future.  There is now a combination of voices that guide them as they make choices and interact with others.


Sadly it is easy to lose touch with one’s own voice and to squelch one’s impulse to dance and play and live fully.  It takes a lot of courage to say what we want to say and to live our lives from the inside out.  I am lucky to belong to a wonderful tribe of friends who are committed to being brave and who support each other in this, even when it is most challenging.  We know each other and give each other a hard time if we know that one of us is shrinking and “going along with” rather than being brave and speaking and acting with integrity, passion, and conviction.


So often, the path of least resistance is to follow along the same path as others, to say what we think others want us to say, to do what we think others expect of us.  Instead, being brave is choosing to sing our own songs, dance our own dances, and tell our own stories.  Judy Garland urged, “Always be a first rate version of yourself and not a second rate version of someone else.”  In order to do that, we must be brave.