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Once upon a time, there was a small herd of elephants living in the forest of Burma. Shawani was a young adult elephant and enjoyed spending her day roaming the forest looking for the most succulent leaves to munch on. One day, she came across a young puppy frolicking beneath a tree.

Shawani was full of love and joy for this tiny creature. They became fast friends. She called her friend Kuttal. The puppy grew up fast and while Shawani was much larger, Kuttal multiplied in size in a matter of months.

One day on their morning walk, the young dog told her larger friend she was pregnant! She was so excited and Shawani revealed she was also pregnant and had been for quite some time. They were both very pleased about the other’s news, but after hearing how long Shawani had been waiting, the dog prepared herself for a long wait, too. However, in just a matter of weeks, she had grown large and was ready to give birth.

She had 6 healthy puppies to care for, and they all followed Shawani around. Months passed and Kuttal once again revealed she was pregnant. Everything went quickly once again. …


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A mini-version of Golden Rock — Photo by author

Two years ago this week, I was with friends exploring Kyaiktiyo Pagoda, also called Golden Rock, on Thadingyut. Thadingyut is a famous festival but I don’t think anyone will be able to travel to celebrate it in 2020. Since this hasn’t exactly been a year of travel, I’ve been enjoying my Google Photos sharing with me where I was on this same day in the past. So let’s take a trip down memory lane.

How We Got to Golden Rock

Kyaiktiyo Pagoda (Golden Rock) is on the summit of Mount Kyayktiyo, about 15 km from a town called Kinpun and around 200km from Yangon, in Mon State. We rented a car from Yoma Fleet and headed out of Yangon to explore. I am not big on driving in Myanmar, so I was in the passenger seat navigating. Whenever I’m the navigator, there is certain to be some hidden treasure. …


But Chronic Illness is Not a Joke

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Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

Less than two weeks after World Narcolepsy Day, I see the term “quarantine narcolepsy” on my newsfeed. When I learned that it was a reference to narcolepsy on Late Night with Seth Meyers, I was vaguely curious.

Seth Meyers asked Taylor Schilling, known for her role as Piper in Orange is the New Black, if she has developed any new coping mechanisms during quarantine.

She responded, “I think I’ve become a bit of a narcoleptic person like I hear like oh ‘plague and pestilence’ and then I go [ugly face] and I pass out again. …


She wants other people living with narcolepsy to know that they are not alone

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Photo by Yannis Papanastasopoulos on Unsplash

“In 1979, fresh out of high school living in Atlanta, I was ready to start my life,” says Paula. “Going to school full time, working part-time, and enjoying a full social life, I never felt there was anything wrong with sleeping every moment I could. It was even okay when my friends started teasing me for always falling asleep.”

As far back as college, Paula remembers sleeping a lot. “Back then I blew it off as being young, clubbing, and drinking too many Pink Champales.”

Paula worked part-time, did her school work, and didn’t think anything of spending her Tuesday nights enjoying Ladies' night at Cisco’s on Campbellton Road, in Atlanta. …


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Once upon a time, there was a young boy living in a tiny village.

His grandmother gave him a handful of seeds and told him to do his best to help them grow.

He had so many questions.

Where should he plant the seeds? What would they turn into?

“Just listen to your heart,” she told him. “Put them where it feels right.”

With his analytical mind, he wanted to know the identity of every seed and learn what was the ideal circumstance for each of the seeds. …


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When I’m rushing through the airport, I am grateful when I see these empty moving walkways, that allow me to hop on and move at double the speed of the people walking on the shiny tiled floor.

When I use energy to heal, create, or manifest, I am on that moving walkway speeding along reaching the destination in record time.

But when I reject the side of me that knows about energy, feels the energy, and is drawn to it, then I am on the tiled floor dragging my baggage behind me at a snail's pace. …


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The gods were up in the heavens one day having a debate because they had a dilemma. The Human race was coming closer to discovering the truths to living the virtuous life, the free life. The gods didn’t want this because it was these truths that kept them in power.

They didn’t want the human race becoming their equals.

They had to discuss where to hide the truths. So they started making suggestions.

One magnificent being suggested they put those secrets in the depths of the deepest oceans. …


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Embracing the Duality of the Human Experience

I’ve always considered myself to be an artist. Even in the years where I created no more than a few doodles on the edges of pages, I knew deep down that I am an artist. I felt something when I was painting or drawing or creating that I didn’t feel anywhere else.

I was lead away from art because it wasn’t a “realistic” career path. Being an artist is hard, and you need to have a steady stream of income if you are going to have the luxury of creating art. Those were the limiting beliefs I held as I was growing up. There were moments where I claimed I didn’t care if I lived under a bridge and painted portraits, art was my heart. But in the end, society won out and I followed the path laid out for me. …


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Where do you sow the seeds?

Once upon a time, there was a man who was looking for his life’s purpose. He found himself with a bucketful of seeds that he wanted to sow.

Everywhere he went he sowed the seeds but the results varied.

Sometimes the seeds fell on rocky ground. They couldn’t even take root.

Other times the roots started creeping down into the soil, but they weren’t deep enough, and when it rained, they were washed away.

Some seedlings grew very tall, but then strong winds ripped them out of the ground.

Very few seeds fell in the most fertile soil, where the roots grew deep, and the plant grew sturdy and strong, ready to stand up to the forces of nature. …

About

Kayla Douglas

Life Coach, author, lifelong learner, travel enthusiast, narcolepsy advocate, living in Myanmar, she/her https://www.kaylamdouglas.com

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