Note from Louisa

When I consider the words “the calm before the storm”, I have to admit that I usually arrive at this designation in hindsight. Looking back after a particularly challenging event, it’s far easier for me to identify the period that preceded it as a time of calm. 

This is likely because, in that moment, I didn’t know what was yet to come. Even though the calm didn’t necessarily feel calm, I was innocent and unaware that it was about to get worse.

How might I behave differently if I could prepare and plan for the storm? What if I could know ahead of time that this moment is the calm? Could I spend the time I use to complain, or wish that things were different, to identify problems that will need to be solved when that storm actually does arrive?

Instead of being paralyzed by worry, or anticipatory grief, could I stop and connect with what I am experiencing right now? Perhaps, knowing that things were going to get a lot harder, I could pause and appreciate the present moment for all of its gifts of ease. I could collect calm and solace as precious logs and use them to keep my fire blazing when the winter winds grow more bitter.

While I am far from prescient, I think we can all agree that the months that lie ahead are likely to pose new challenges for us on multiple fronts. As difficult as things seem now, we are soon likely to look longingly back at this time as a period of calm. 

What might we wish we had spent this time doing?

My answer is to shore up my community and my practice. Knowing that the months that lie ahead are likely to be fraught with isolation and anxiety, I am recommitting myself to regular practices of meditation and creativity to anchor me.  

These practices will be a reminder to not succumb to the external chaos that swirls about me, but instead to turn inward for inspiration and anchor, and to my community for support.

How will you prepare? How can the CML community keep you buoyant in the rough seas that lie ahead?

Please look to our offerings over the winter months to help sustain you through daily practice, regular study, and creative opportunities. Find your community and pledge your support to one another through regular contact and checking in. Make sure to get enough sleep, exercise and play. And be sure to laugh. A lot.

Together, we will find still waters again.

Blessings on your journey.


Daily Silent Meditation             
8:15 - 9:00 am
Monday - Friday Morning
Meeting ID: 899 6440 8784
Passcode: 818114
Guided Meditation
1:15 - 1:45 pm          
Tuesday Afternoon
Meeting ID: 826 1223 4516
Passcode: 058471

Omaha Meditates 2021
Facilitated Online by Aaron Weiner
January 1, 2021

Wisdom House Collaborative is partnering once more with the Center for Mindful Living to celebrate Omaha Meditates on New Year’s Day. Please come join us at 11 am for a virtual hour-long sit on January 1st to start 2021 with intention. 

If you wish to take the Omaha Meditates pledge to dedicate one minute or more to the goodwill of the event please go to Or visit the Wisdom House Collaborative website at where you’ll find their New Year’s Resolution page that talks about recent scientific findings on the mechanism for changing our habits through literally rewiring our minds and bodies beginning with the training of attention and clarity.  

Meeting ID: 885 0969 4961
Passcode: 462977
Mindfulness Study Group
Facilitated Online by Laura Crosby
First and Third Sunday of the month from 4pm to 6 pm

The Mindfulness Study Group is beginning its new book selection, In the Face of Fear, Buddhist Wisdom for Challenging Times. This anthology features teachings from the Dalai Lama, Pema Chödrön, Thich Nhat Hanh, Chögyam Trungpa, Sylvia Boorstein, Jack Kornfield, Norman Fischer, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Sharon Salzberg, Joseph Goldstein and many others. Its 33 essays explore how we can:
  • remain open, joyful, and caring, even when life is stressful 
  • access our innate confidence and fearlessness
  • turn difficult times into opportunities for spiritual development
  • discover that our true nature is always awake, wise, and good, no matter what is happening   

You can join us for the Mindfulness Study Group the first and third Sunday of each month from 4-6pm via Zoom (info below) Our sessions are freely offered, drop-ins are welcome, and there's no registration necessary. We read together - so no homework! - and discuss each chapter. Books are available from

Meeting ID: 843 4464 0572
Passcode: 570798
CML Third Space
Shared Facilitation Online
Second and Fourth Sunday of the month 
7:00 pm to 8:00 pm

CML Third Space is a virtual community where we can gather, meet new neighbors and friends, and engage in resiliency building to help us stay connected and grounded through this difficult time.
Please join us on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month at 7:00 pm CST for a co-created space where we use mindfulness, connection and play to keep our immune systems strong and robust!

Meeting ID: 817 7852 5724
Passcode: 212247

Join us on the Third Space Facebook page.
Life, Liberty & the Pursuit of …
by Laura Crosby
An unalienable right we know by heart. “The pursuit of happiness.” But do we know it? For many it has become so rote that we no longer reflect on what it really means to us.
Is it the pursuit that is our right? Is it the happiness? What is pursuit? What is happiness? What is a right? What is right?
In my head, I am hearing, “Can I be real a second? Tell the people how I feel a second?” (From Hamilton again.)
Let’s be real. Let’s explore together. What is this happiness we are pursuing? 
Yes, the original declaration of these rights omitted women, was not extended in its day to black or indigenous peoples let alone LGBTQ+ people, and was authored and signed by slave-owning elites. Maybe some of us don’t even think the declaration is relevant to us. Still, it’s baked into this country, this democracy, our psyches, our neurons. Arguably, unjust pursuit of a warped notion of happiness is what perpetuated (and perpetuates) these hypocrisies.
So again, what is this happiness we are pursuing?
Every day I feel my heart sending this refrain, “May all beings live in health, peace and happiness, free from hatred and suffering.” Over and over. All beings. Happiness.
And to you now, “May you live in health, peace and happiness, free from hatred and suffering.” 
Even as they bring us to our knees, trying times like these clarify and crystallize what this happiness is that we seek, bringing into sharpest relief the divergence between a true, deep happiness and a shallow, illusory one.
What’s more, times like these put us in touch with the nature of our pursuits, often revealing whether the means are worthy of the ends. Are these the pursuits that will yield the Happiness … and what about the Life and Liberty? And what if these are not the pursuits that will do so but they still feel good, what then? 
While the rights may be unalienable, we are called upon to wield them wisely, mindfully.
Viktor Frankl says, “It’s not the load that wears us down, it’s how we carry it.” What a beautiful invitation to simply look at how we are carrying our load. Can we carry it in a way that conditions peace and happiness for all? 
What is the truth of what we are thinking, believing, intending, saying, and doing? Will it shape a wholesome happiness for ourselves and others? Poet Naomi Shihab Nye offers a rendition of wholesome happiness this way in her poem So Much Happiness.

…happiness floats.
It doesn't need you to hold it down.
It doesn't need anything.
Happiness lands on the roof of the next house, singing,
and disappears when it wants to.
You are happy either way …
Since there is no place large enough
to contain so much happiness,
you shrug, you raise your hands, and it flows out of you
into everything you touch. You are not responsible.
You take no credit, as the night sky takes no credit
for the moon, but continues to hold it, and share it,
and in that way, be known

This is the happiness my heart sends you each day, the kind that doesn’t need anything, that flows out of you into everything you touch. This is the pursuit and the happiness.