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  • Writer's pictureCamp Goldston Publishing, LLC

That Which Gives Me Life

By Susan D. Peters

Vitality is the very essence of feeling alive! At the dawn of 2020, I anticipated perfect clarity, and somehow, did not allow for the fact that somethings that you see, you-will-not-like! Anyway, I naively thought, “this is my year!” Beloveds, this WAS my year, not in the idyllic sense I had in mind, but in the mind of the Cosmic Orderliness, that causes the rising and setting of the sun, and the ebb and flow of the tides, that Orderliness ordained this as my year to grow. 

When I googled the definition of vitality in Webster’s Dictionary online, these examples resonated with me, 1) power of enduring and 2) capacity to live and develop.

As the COVID19 global pandemic stoked my fears, racial injustice was made crystal clear. Television broadcasted the murder of a Black man by law enforcement on television. The incompetence of the Chief Executive of the highest office in the nation confirmed that the United States of America was functioning like a “third world” country. These inescapable events forced me to find somehow the power to endure and the capacity to live and develop.

Where do you go when you cannot leave your home? Where do you find comfort when you cannot exchange hugs or even shake hands? Where do you go when every media outlet shows you that there is no justice depicted and no peace is foreseen? You go within; you withdraw to the realm of Spirit, where you are always welcomed and loved. 

Connecting with Spirit through silence has long been my morning ritual. Some would say that 4:00 AM is too early to rise, but I typically awaken at 4 AM in a dark and soundless room, and in the silence of the morning, I savor the sound of “nothing.” That fresh void that hangs over the world like a warm blanket, muffling negativity. My first thoughts are Thank-you-God for giving me one-more-day. Sometimes I follow guided meditations, but mainly, I listen to my heart and wait for a gift of insight. As a type-A list-maker, my day quickly becomes active, but the first several hours of each day are spent reveling in solitude and replenishing myself.

My environment inspires me. The soft green color of my bedroom, the luxury of my matching overfilled down comforter, the fragrance of scented candles restores my sense of calm and balance. Preparing for my day would be incomplete without instrumental music, most recently violin and piano music. 

Freedom of movement is also imperative to me, and while COVID19 forced mask-wearing that necessarily covered our noses and mouths (and dampened my lipstick fetish). The masks, temperature checks, regular COVID screenings allowed me to see friends at the outdoor walking track and eventually return to my membership in the local health club. Walking and water aerobics enhanced my sense of vitality, freedom, and well-being.

Community garden

2020 provided incredible gardening weather. Playing in the dirt reminds me that I am a co-Creator, and watching tender sprouts become food-bearing plants brings out my inner goddess. 

Writing is one of the treasures of my life; it is a thread that holds me together. Having realized early on that while one cannot always say what one wants to say, one can always write precisely what one thinks thoroughly sealed my love of the written word! Becoming an author has furnished me with a creative outlet, and while writing isn’t always ‘easy,’ the final project invariably brings me joy. The bonus has readers that appreciate the written word.

My Family is everything! Having been raised in a small, emotionally distant family, I grew up admiring close families with cousins and uncles and large family gatherings. As the parent of five wonderful children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, I have created that! We are sometimes a messy crew, but we remain committed to loving and supporting one another unconditionally. 

I’ve been fortunate to remain connected to precious childhood friends and have been blessed with new friends throughout my life, including social media relationships. During this pandemic, it was a godsend to be able to lean on those friendships when I felt overwhelmed or triggered by events. 

This year has been one that I would not ever want to repeat. In terms of difficulty, 2020 was a perfect 10. Yet, I persevered and was rewarded with health, vitality, and an abundance of self-knowledge. Yes, 2020 made some things very clear. God always brings you what you need! #iamasurvivor #iamunstoppable.

© 2020 Susan Peters, All rights reserved.


Susan D. Peters, aka, Ahnydah (ah-NIE-dah) Rahm, brings a wealth of experience gained as an expatriate living in West Africa. Her memoir Sweet Liberia, Lessons from the Coal Pot, received the Black Excellence Award for Non-Fiction from the African American Alliance of Chicago and the Mate E. Palmer award for Non-Fiction from the Illinois Press Women’s Association. Broken Dolls, Susan’s second book, represents her foray into the mystery market and is the first of a series featuring Detective Joi Sommers as its heroine. Her most recent publication is Stolen Rainbow, a short story focused on the post combat recovery of a beautiful marine captain after a devastating combat injury. Her work is featured in three anthologies, Baring It All, the Ins and Outs of Publishing, Signed, Sealed, Delivered … I’m Yours, a contemporary romance anthology, and The Anthology of the Illinois Woman’s Press Association. Buy her books online and at

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