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We start our lives with certain talents, abilities and inclinations. We get praise for what we do well. We feed on that, it encourages us to learn more, do more, even, God forbid, practice more. The gift I was given was Music. And oh, it has filled me, lifted me, and given me tremendous joy and pleasure. Of course, there were times when a certain job was more challenging than I would have liked, or I thought I wasn’t skilled enough to do it really well – but always, always, there has been a deep contentment that I was on the right path for me. The journey has been a rich tapestry of music, weaving its way from classical piano to musical theatre, to being a chick singer in a band, to conducting an orchestra, to composing musicals, to teaching voice – and back and forth – creating this textured, very satisfying life in brilliant colors of sound.

Walking along beside that gift of music, quietly keeping to herself, was Diane the writer. Shy. Loving stories – reading and writing them. Sometimes just making them up off the top of my head -The story of the king and how he planted money trees to hide his golden coins - told while on bicycle rides with my baby sister. Or the series of stories I made up to help pass the time while I combed out my daughter’s long, tangled hair in the mornings. The life experiences, written in journals – Christmas Eve spent in a tiny airport in the middle of Russia, Waiting for hours on the Train going nowhere in Italy, The Summer of the Rat in the Car . . .so many, many stories. Now, I have the great pleasure to invite this quiet one out onto the big path of Life, and walk in the sunlight. She is so excited, bubbling inside with the newness of releasing this gift, letting it be seen and heard, shared and enjoyed with others. The writer emerges. She will walk in front for a while, the musician will always be there, with her, ready to take the lead again, when she may need a rest. But for now . . . a change has begun, and a new path is forming. There will be twists, plot surprises, characters that show up unexpectedly, and all of it – every new bit of it – does not scare me. That is amazing! It simply fills me with wonder and delight. I’m ready. Life is great an ANY age. Or should I say, EVERY age… here we go, another new beginning.

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