Where happiness grows

“When your heart is broken, you plant seeds in the cracks and pray for rain.” ― Andrea Gibson

Three and a half years ago I wrote a journal entry and when I posted it on my blog in November, 2014, I titled it: Planting the seeds and I end the post with… I am cracked, but I am planting seeds that will grow into the strong roots of a deep deserved happiness, and I am praying for rain.

The rains have come and done their magic. Time has helped to solidify the roots of my happiness. What I do now, how I behave, how I live my life, is much more conscious than before. I don’t take things for granted any more. I know that I am the one who holds the key to my own well being and I accept and embrace that fact. I have slowly healed from the trauma and it is a rare occasion these days when I am truly down. I am not writing as much of late, but it is not because I don’t have anything to write, or that I don’t feel like writing. It is more a factor of prioritizing the time to write. I don’t want to lose track of my love of putting pen to paper, so to speak. This blog has been a place of both pain and joy for me, but it has always been a place for growth and healing. Writing is my lifeblood.

It has been a month since I last wrote here. What a busy month!!! And now we are at the end of another year. My 2017 turned out to be pretty wonderful (American politics pushed very far aside) and I made a great deal of progress in my healing. On December 11th, Blue Eyes celebrated four years of sobriety. On that date, he was in meetings in Tokyo, but upon our return home, he picked up his four year chip at a special Friday-before-Christmas 12-step meeting. The meeting was attended by many of his favorite recovering sex addicts. A lot of his good friends these days are sex addicts. They are kind, gentle, loving, and fallible people, and they are addicts. I’m really happy he has found 12 step to be a safe place for him. Blue Eyes is making great progress. Interestingly enough, last year at this time we were also in Tokyo (Living in denial) and Blue Eyes was very much still struggling. It’s nice to be able to mark such pronounced progress here on the blog.

On December 1st, Blue Eyes and I boarded a plane to Hawaii and spent an enjoyable, tranquil, blissful really, week on the island of Oahu.


Arriving Oahu.

We visit Hawaii at least once per year. We own a timeshare in the resort area of Ko Olina. I decided I wanted this week in paradise to be really relaxing. I had just spent a week preparing for and serving up Thanksgiving to a dozen at the beach house, and I would return the end of December to a similar situation for Christmas. I desperately needed this break.

We walked, we talked, we shopped, we meditated together, we ate good food, we enjoyed the sunshine and warmth, and we didn’t have a schedule. There was zero trauma, and a lot of loving kindness and nurturing. We did good. We even drove into Waikiki, something we rarely, if ever, do, and went to the Ala Moana Shopping Center to purchase a gift for The Princess. I chuckled at the young Hawaiian children at the mall wearing sweats, coats, and boots. It was December, but it was also 78 degrees!


Our first day on the island was a bit cloudy, but still warm (to us) and gorgeous.


The families with young children really enjoy the pools at the timeshare. Our room was directly above this pool, which has a cave you can swim through, waterfalls, a fun waterslide, and a bar in the middle for the parents.


We chose a beautiful, grassy spot near the timeshare for our daily meditation. This was our view.


Ko Olina Lagoons glowing in the sunshine at dusk… a nightly occurrence.


We cooked some delicious meals at the timeshare, but when we didn’t feel like cooking, we walked down to the Four Seasons and indulged in such delicacies as lobster tacos, short rib bao, and a tasty miso butterscotch milkshake.


We spent an indulgent day at the Four Seasons spa.


We drove to the North Shore, visited Haleiwa town and Banzai Pipeline.


And on our last night, we visited our favorite, Lanikai Beach at sunset. So beautiful, so relaxing, so romantic.

We then hopped on a plane bound for Tokyo. Well, truth be told, I wasn’t ready to leave the tropical paradise that is Hawaii, so it was a bit more like dragging myself early on a Friday morning onto a plane for a grueling nine hour flight after which I knew I would be loopy from the 19-hour time difference. My niece, aka The Princess, celebrated her third birthday last month and her Shichi-go-san (rite of passage for boys ages 3 & 5, and girls ages 3 & 7) festival was scheduled for the day after we arrived Tokyo. I truly appreciate my brother, GQ, for planning this special event around our trip. The ceremony took place at the gorgeous Meiji Shrine in the middle of Yoyogi Park in Shibuya, Tokyo.


The Princess.


The Princess was simply adorable in her kimono.

Our hotel was in the Marunouchi area, per usual, and I spent one afternoon walking all the way around the Imperial Palace.


Tokyo, Japan on a crisp December afternoon.


Outside the Imperial Palace gates.


Japanese chefs excel at seasonal cuisine. After returning from my 8 mile walk around Marunouchi, I ordered the winter themed assorted chocolates and baked confectionery dessert for Blue Eyes and I to share. Everything was delicious, of course, but it looked a little too ‘Legend of Sleepy Hollow’ for my taste!


One day we met The Princess and her parents at Tokyo Disneyland. We hadn’t been in over 20 years. It was all themed up for Christmas and we had a lot of fun. The Princess LOVES Mickey Mouse (and parades, of which we watched three), but was a little frightened on her first trip through Splash Mountain. It wasn’t the big waterfall that scared her…. it was the unfamiliar characters singing REALLY loud in equal parts Japanese and English, and the DARK!!! She loved the waterfall.


We spent the second half of our time in Japan, in Kyoto. This year, 2017 was the thirty year anniversary of my having lived in Kyoto. It was fun to re-visit some of the places we had frequented in 1987. This is the entrance gate to Heian Shrine in Higashiyama, Kyoto.


The Sake and Champagne house across the 800 year-old pond from our room at our hotel in Kyoto.


Maiko-san performing at our hotel.


We ate a few meals out with old Kyoto friends. Much of the best food in Kyoto is multi-course Kaiseki Ryori, seasonal cuisine. This is the beautiful and delicious sashimi course at an old Ryokan (Japanese Inn) near our hotel.


We spent a lovely afternoon at one of our favorite Kyoto spots, Arashiyama. This is the temple’s winter garden at Tenryuji.


Arashiyama is also a fun little town for shopping and they have some pretty fun snacks like these beautiful cotton candy options. Of course I did not eat any cotton candy.


The most famous and most beautiful spot in Arashiyama, the bamboo forest.


On the last day of our trip, we explored the Gion neighborhood of Kyoto.


And took a walk up to our favorite Kyoto landmark, Kiyomizu Dera, the beautiful Buddhist temple in eastern Kyoto.


We actually didn’t visit the temple this trip as we were mainly in the area to do some omiyage (souvenir) shopping. The streets around Kiyomizu have amazing shops.


We stopped in to the cutest cafe and gift shop, purchased numerous gifts to bring back home, and I just had to have a slice of this gorgeous green tea swirl cheesecake with a sesame seed crust. I am definitely going to attempt recreating this beauty at home.


About to board our plane in Narita, Tokyo, Japan.

In the end, four years later, we have both made some amazing progress in our healing. Blue Eyes is healing from wounds that span five decades, and hopefully learning to live a life free of shame. I made my way through emotions that I thought had the ability to take me down for good. Some days I felt like I had reached the end of my capacity to feel any emotion at all and I merely wanted to check out. This past month, the last weeks of 2017, have been filled with joy, and contentment. Together, and separate, we are nearly whole again, but most of all we have learned to be patient and kind and loving to each other, and to ourselves.

May your 2018 be filled with joy, mindfulness, peace, strength, and love. ❤


19 thoughts on “Where happiness grows

  1. I loved the pictures Kat! I’ve been planning my get-away I’m not sure why but I now could use your advice on where I could Mom-cation on my own ❤ Love the pictures and that cheesecake although did I miss something why did you not get the cotton candy!! LOVE cotton candy! I loved your reply to FA on the hope BE keeps trying. I don't hope Charles does anything and maybe I should. Maybe I should hope he keeps trying, maybe I should hope for better things for Charles than being the former backstabber he was.. I do know that I feel empowered after almost 4 years that no matter what whether Charles walks out, cheats, or whatever that I'm not hanging on his words or him at all. Whether Charles chooses to do right or wrong by me I will be well. I do miss that ignorance, the false security that I used to have with Charles. I miss not feeling like someone has my back in this marriage, that I can count on Charles. I know I can't and that's okay.. I think for right now anyway..
    Love the pictures, love the desserts ❤ ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi NH! I hope you and your family had a great Christmas and are enjoying 2018 so far! No cotton candy for me because it is straight sugar and I am diabetic, even on a low dose of insulin at this point. I try to be good! 🙂 My father has struggled with neuropathy for years and I don’t ever want to have to do that. But that cotton candy did look so pretty and delicious! There are so many places to vacation alone, but I would certainly go tropical! Hawaii is wonderful all year long!

      Regarding my husband, I hope for his own sake he keeps improving on who he is. He is an addict and without recovery, they continue to do very bad things… one indiscretion will never be enough. It’s a daily struggle, and I do want to spend my life with him, so him continuing to fight the struggle is mandatory for that. But I do get it. I think you deserve more than what you are settling for, but maybe by the time your little ones are grown, you will feel differently. I agree that at this point I don’t really feel like I can count on my husband to completely have my back. I’m hoping that’s the last little vestiges of betrayal holding on. Hopefully that will change, but I also know it is not healthy to totally rely on someone else. We all need to be independent and self reliant–unfortunately we were shoved into this reality, not eased in.

      Big hugs, xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

      • Love your replies and your wisdom. Yes 2018 has been good, but I’m struggling figuring out my businesses and what that all looks for me because I don’t see me cutting a 9-5 at all unless the money was amazing! I liked being part of a team that seemed solid but I know this team is not.
        I’m enjoying the littles even if they are screaming at each other right now on Christmas break.

        Here’s to a great Tuesday! Happy New Year

        Liked by 1 person

        • I have a lot of friends working direct sales businesses from home at this point… but you have to want to spend every day selling and connecting. What are your businesses? I’m afraid I am behind on reading blogs so maybe you have talked about it?

          I remember those holiday breaks with my boys. Christmas break always went pretty well, but summer, oy, by August I was pulling my hair out. Enjoy them while you can. They are off and flown all too soon. I’m about to go get on my elliptical. Why do I have to hate exercise so much? Maybe hypnosis would help. 🙂



  2. Absolutely beautiful Kat. The photos are amazing! I would love to visit both places. I would also love to be where you are in healing too. Sadly not yet, but something to hope for if OH continues along his good path. 2017 was better in many ways (although many blips), so I do have hope. If only I can crack the leaving the past in the past and living in the now part, I would be a lot more content.

    Happy 2018!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Howdy, Falling Ash. It is incredibly difficult to accept that what happened cannot be changed and that we just have to live with it. Sometimes I look at my husband and wonder if he is still lying. I don’t think he is, but I never thought he was before either. And then I realize, if he is, there is absolutely nothing I can do about it. It will be his great loss if he blows his chance at happily ever after with me. I no longer live in that place where my dreams die with his. I know I will be okay no matter what. I also no longer live in a place of blissful ignorance. I own my life and my happiness. I have changed a lot since d-day. My innocence is gone, but I have traded it for something really important, the truth. I have accepted that I can absolutely live with the truth no matter how different and disappointing it is compared to what I thought. It’s okay. He’s trying to become that better man. I hope he keeps trying, but even if he doesn’t, I will still be me. Cheers to a new year, new growth, and many happy days! xoxo

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Happy New Year Kat. So wonderful to hear happiness back in your life. You have made my journey thru this so much easier bc I never felt alone. So thanks for u! Keep the positivity with u- will b in my thoughts!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. What a beautiful treat to read this blog post and enjoy your travel photos this morning – January 1, 2018! I’m so happy for your joy and peace, Kat. May your life continue to hold many blessings throughout the coming year and beyond.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Happy New Year. Thank you for your postings. They have helped me and given me hope. Tokyo and Hawaii look amazing. I am happy that you and your husband have found peace and contentment last year. Long may it continue.

    Liked by 3 people

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