Six months later… Starting to blossom!

In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take.

I’ve been in Taiwan for 6 months but it feels longer than that. More like 6 years. Lol. Reflecting back in my time here, I realized just how much I’ve grown. 

The toughest obstacle I’ve had to overcome here are health issues. I have a gluten allergy and many times Taiwanese dishes contain noodles, dumplings, and bread. Additionally, I can’t read Chinese so it’s been difficult to buy food. I remember just staring at the items in the grocery store as my eyes begin to swell with tears, “How am I going to buy food to eat?” I was so overwhelmed.

 

I’m not the type of person to ask for help. People that are familiar with me know that I’m very independent. I had to swallow my pride here and it was an important lesson for me. There is nothing wrong with asking for help, and people are more than willing to help one another a majority of the time.


 One of my co-workers took me to the grocery store and read the ingredients of food items so that I could buy what I needed. Thank you Hsuan.

Another coworker directed me to a homeopathic doctor who spoke English. She was extremely helpful in giving me names of organic stores and providing me with herbs to help lessen my inflammation in my body. (When I moved here, I ate many things with gluten. It made my joints hurt and my body swell up). Thank you Meredith for helping out.

Even though I struggled with food, I was able to take this struggle and grow from it. I put faith in the universe and they sent me the tools necessary to figure out where to eat, what to eat and sent me the humans that would guide me to these answers.  

What I’m most proud of in these six months is my spiritual growth. Moving abroad in your own almost forces you to look within. I’ve done so much shadow work, figuring out what Dawn is all about. I’ve slowly peeled off layer-by-layer the past traumas and have released so much. I’m at the point where the work is paid off and I notice the shift in me. 

 

I’m loving myself more each day and by clearing this kharma, my purpose is showing up and doors are opening for me. Things are becoming easier.

 

I think back to myself 6 months ago and do I feel that I’m in a better space? Yes. I was feeling stagnant in the US. The moving abroad experience is a roller coaster. I know many times on social media people only show the good aspects of their life. I try and be as honest as I can. It’s not always easy to put yourself out there, but I will continue to do so.

My ultimate crush: An ode to NYC

Quote: One can’t paint New York as it as, but rather as it is felt- Georgia O’Keefe

Valentine’s Day in Taiwan, not relevant, which is a breath of fresh air. Chinese New Year is in full effect. Stores and restaurants are closed, the streets are quiet, and it’s peaceful. Loving it.

 

NYC has been heavy on my mind since the news of Ricky Powell, famed photographer of the Greenwich Village, passed last week.

Ph: Ricky Powell

I was flipping through Facebook when I see a video- A Tribe Called Quest- Electric Relaxation. Ahhhhhh!

 

So many memories of my ultimate crush- NYC. My love began as a child. Growing up, my family would make a yearly trip to go Christmas shopping. In the 80’s NYC was grimy, full of passion and pain.

As I got older, the city pulled me into its bosom. NYU was calling me for graduate school. I remember wanting to go there so bad; I called them every day acquiring about being admitted. Then one day, I got the news, I got in!

My journey to moving to the city was bumpy at first. My grandmother was sick, and I had a sense I wouldn’t see her again. Unfortunately, I found out that she passed away during my first week living in NYC

My favorite memory at NYU- Walked into lecture and looked around at the students in the front of the class. I saw these young women dressed up looking too bougie for my liking. As I walk past them, I saw this woman in the back with a big afro. I took a seat next to her. Yes! 

 

  • What’s your name?
  • My name is Beth. I’m from Philly. 

 

This woman is still in my life, and we made such a good team at the school. She’s a fantastic writer and continues to be. She would write, I would research and we were a sensational team.

NYC-  The story of my life, living one way by day and another by night. Daytime- student and nanny. Nighttime- Girlfriend to a hip-hop DJ, partying it up with artists, models, and entertainers. It’s crazy when I look back at it.

 

As a gay woman living this life in the 1990s, it was difficult. My ex could not live the way she was living and DJ. Society wouldn’t accept us. I was constantly introduced as, “ … my assistance’s friend.” I didn’t realize how damaging that was to my psyche. The crazy thing was, I saw many gay scenarios going on behind the curtain of the illusion. I would never mention names, but I could write a book on my experiences

 Unfortunately, this behavior of being “the friend” happened more than once with NYC women. I was terrific to have at home, but not out in public. Looking back, I kept it to myself and lived the life of an extravagant girlfriend behind-the-scenes at the hottest clubs, fashion shows, and Hampton parties in the summer. Thinking about it just made it worse and I spiraled at night, drinking a lot to hide my pain. When it came to my daily life, I kept it together. I was on my game, nannying and getting that academic work done. It was crazy! I killed it at NYU, graduating with a 3.8 GPA.

 

Just as fast as I got to NYC, I left. Grad school over, time to go off to home, then California and back home. NYC always creeps back into my life. Met a dancer in the late 2000s and we became a couple.

  • Do you have connections in NYC?

Next thing I knew we were off to the city. I’m right back in my old life. Partying with athletes, rappers, and entertainers. My ex was very naive to NYC and its “rotten apple ways.” That innocence made her desirable and so much money. 

 

I know some people have their opinions about women dancing and I respect everybody’s views. Most scenarios for dancers are not like my exes and I understand that.  Personally, I will never look down on dancers. People have their reasons for doing what they do. I met some amazing women in the clubs. I had unbelievable conversations with them and these women were talented. The poles at this particular club were like two stories high and to see these women making acrobatic moves was beautiful. I looked at their work as art. In this club, the ladies were taken care of and it was all good. The DJ was pumping his music, the food was on point, and my baby was making money. She looked at this as strictly business and didn’t get caught up in the drama. Because of this, she made a lot of money, could buy a car and put away money.

After we broke up, I didn’t go to the city much, but it’s always in my mind. It was a big part of my life for such a long time and that’s something that never goes away, especially after living there. So many more stories but the point is the city is crazy and my relationship with it is just like a crush. 

 

You go through ebbs and flows, you’re infatuated, then that fades, you look at it from afar, admire what you went through, and sometimes it sucks you back in. 

 

I’ll never regret my NYC crush. It made me resilient and appreciative for the life lessons.

Various ways to wellness

“Health is a state of complete harmony of the body, mind and spirit. When one is free from physical disabilities and mental distractions, the gates of the soul open.”- B.K.S Lyengar

For the past couple of years, I have focused my attention away from Western medicine and onto homeopathic doctors. It’s really changed my health for the better.

 

When I came to Taiwan, I wanted to explore Chinese medicine and all that it has to offer. I asked for some recommendations through Facebook (Thank you, Taichung Ladies group) and found a doctor who speaks English and isn’t too far from home.

 

As soon as I walked through the door, I knew this was the place for me. The first thing I saw was vast jars of Chinese herbs. The receptionist didn’t speak English but called this woman doctor who would be working with me.

 

I heard the quick shuffling of feet and then this tiny woman appeared. “Hi, I’m Doctor Chen Yuzhi.” I thought to myself, “OMG, she is so dang cute.”  In our initial visit, she discussed Chi, the energy that flows through our bodies. At times, it gets stuck which causes health problems.

She connected me to this machine that scanned my whole body and gave her a clear picture of what’s going on with me energetically. Dr. Yuzhi Is exceptionally knowledgeable and took her time learning about my medical history and explaining Chinese medicine to me.

 

I’ve been seeing her for about three months, and I have seen some changes in that time. Moving across the world can impact you in so many ways, from the mental to the physical. I went from experiencing four seasons in Massachusetts to a subtropical climate in Taiwan. My body was screaming, “hell no!”  

 

The most pressing issues have been with my health and the stressors of a new way of life in Taiwan. I’ve dealt with lack of sleep as well as neck and shoulder pain. Also, my body is highly sensitive and any change causes a reaction. I struggled with severe itchiness and found out it was the detergent I was using.

 

I sought out Chinese medicine for acupuncture, which has helped me in the past with various pains. In the states, I had a great acupuncturist. Sessions were about 1.5 hours and so relaxing. Here, it’s a different story. First of all, it’s much cheaper and covered by insurance.  I pay 100 NT($3USD) a session. These sessions are the basics. I’m currently doing full treatments, so that’s about 600 NT ($20USD). I won’t get into what I paid in the states for acupuncture, but it was so much more.

 

The sessions here last about 15 to 20 minutes. I love Dr. Yuzhi because her explanations are so thorough and she can tell when I need work in a particular area by scanning my body for my energy.

 

I’ve also done a process called Gua Sha (scraping), in which they scrape your skin with a massage tool that draws out toxins from within your muscles. It allows the body to flush these toxins away and nourish the local area was flesh blood. It is not a comfortable process. I can tolerate pain (former rugby player here), but ouch! I find it does help alleviate pain and sensitivity in my muscles.

 

Last but not least, the Chinese herbs. They were used for centuries in China to address unhealthy body patterns that manifest into various symptoms and complaints. My doctor explained to me that the herbs aim to help you regain balance in your body and strengthen your body’s resistance to disease. Just a warning, Chinese herbs taste awful, but I do feel like it is improving my health. My Taiwanese coworker saw me taking them and said, “I thought you would only be interested in Western medicine.” LOL. I told him I’m a different breed of Westerner. He just laughed.

 

I’m grateful for this lovely doctor and her knowledge. I’m glad that I put in the research and looked at all ways to improve my health. We are all unique and our bodies are all different. If this resonates with you, I suggest doing some research and check it out.

Sneak Peak:


INTO THE DAWN is my new podcast section. Here you can listen to my life stories, thoughts and teachings. I want to share this with you,since you are part of this project that is born from the depths of my soul!.

Tainan- The land of the temples!

In nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect. Trees can be contorted in weird ways and they’re still beautiful- Alice Walker

Spent some amazing days in Tainan.There’s so much history here. It’s the original capital of Taiwan and every time you turn around, there seems to be a temple right around the corner.


  As soon as I got off the train, I felt a sense of peace. It was like I could exhale. Five hours of walking today brought life to my soul.


First stop- Chihkan Tower: The history here spans anything that I’ve seen in my travels. The Dutch occupied the building in the 1600s and then became a Chinese pagoda during the Qing Dynasty. I always have had a huge connection to the ocean and resonated with the Sea Gods statues displayed in the building. Such a powerful presence that had.  After exiting the building, I saw this marvelous, elegant tree. I have never seen a tree with such a huge trunk. I was able to take the most fascinating photo of it as the sun shined through its limbs.

They say Tainan is the land of temples and I have to agree. I visited as many as I could in one day. Each one brought joy to my being. From Lady Linshui’s Temple to The God of War Temple to my favorite, Tainan Grand Mizu Temple, they were all fascinating to explore. Each temple had its own protocol that the people worshipping followed. Guanyin, the goddess of compassion, has been so influential in my life thus far in Taiwan. 


I feel any time I’m struggling; she is there. In every temple today, she made an appearance and every time I saw her, I became emotional. Whether you believe in a higher being or not, we all need that sense that someone is there, really there. Protecting and guiding us along the way. Some people will get this, some won’t and that’s okay.

The next day my coworker, who is from Tainan, took me out. I really appreciate this woman! She has helped me in so many ways, from translating to helping me find my way around and sharing her love for Taiwanese food with me. I don’t know what I would do without her. I thank the Universe for bringing her into my life. She took me to the Anping area to visit Anping Fort and the treehouse.  

In the Anping Fort, I was fascinated by the way all of our cultures are connected. I’m Portuguese, and I know that my ancestors traveled the world during the period of intense navigation by Ferdinan Magellan and Vasco de Gama. I wonder if they came to Taiwan? After this thought, we saw a blue and white ceramic vase that I recognized as something that you would see on tiles in Portugal.  I have a sense they were here many ages ago. 

The trees were so cool in the treehouse. It blows my mind how trees can adapt to their environment and thrive. We could definitely learn a thing or two from trees and nature in general. 

Hope in the *New Year*

Hope is praying for rain, but faith is bringing an umbrella- unknown

What a beautiful first day of the new year! Last night was a joyous event. The fireworks at Taipei 101 were great. It wasn’t too crowded (probably due to the cold weather and Covid), so I enjoyed it a little more.

 

After they shut down the streets, people were celebrating with sparklers and taking pictures. As I walked along the street, I began to slow my pace, just observe and appreciate that people were out enjoying each other’s company.  This is not happening in most places throughout the world.  At one point, I sat down and just cried, realizing how blessed I am to have the opportunity to experience the simple things that others can’t right now.  

 

The first place I decided to go to on New Years Day was Longshan Temple. As I entered, I walked past this beautiful waterfall that gave me a sense of tranquility. I stood there for a while, soaking in the aura of calmness.

 

  This is what life is about. 

 

Appreciating nature and all it has to offer. There were so many people giving offerings to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas on the New Year. From the flowers to the fruits, each provided a myriad of colors that made me smile. I could’ve stayed there all day.  

My next stop was to see the Banksy art exhibit at Chiang Kai- Shek Memorial Hall. I didn’t expect the area to be so vast. As I walked, I stopped to admire the ancient trees. So big, strong. I wondered what they witnessed in this area over their hundreds of years in existence. Taiwanese people really appreciate nature, and even though we were in the middle of the capital city, it felt like we could be in the forest in Eastern Taiwan. Numerous birds flying so close to humans, and they seemed to be not afraid of people. I was able to get close to many. Their pigeons are so beautiful here. Many different colors on their wings. A stark contrast from the New York City pigeon. LOL

I didn’t have any expectations for the exhibit, but I was pleasantly surprised. There are many pieces of his work. This Anonymous artist has a passion for sticking up for the little guy—the people treated poorly by Capitalism on artists. America has a big piece of this.


 The land of the bullies, a country that feels they can do whatever they want and get away with it because it is the U. S. A. Meanwhile, people’s lives are destroyed. I spent four hours looking and appreciating a different viewpoint.

As I left the museum, there was a Buddhist ceremony occurring. The chanting of each member rang through me, making me feel alive. I stopped and sat cross-legged with eyes closed, letting the sound engulf me. I needed that powerful voice.

While in silence, something I read from Guanyin came to me.  She teaches us that we can sometimes accomplish more by meeting people where they are and then gently evoking change than by trying to force our triggered state. 

I pray for society. 

Click HERE to see Bansky’s exhibit!

Born Day

November 14th, 2020 Perspective of the day- I’m in an uncomfortable stage of my life where my old self is gone, but my new self isn’t fully born yet. I’m in the midst of a transformation.

Happy birthday to ya!!!!

Happy birthday to ya!!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was a great day. Drove to Kenting, which is in southern Taiwan, to spend some time on the beach. I found an amazing hostel, Mamalulu. The owner of the hotel that I stayed at was so gracious and kind. She knew I had an allergy to gluten, so his wife cooked me a special breakfast every morning. What an amazing array of fruits and vegetables.

https://mamalulu-hostel-hengchun.booked.net/

 

I got my cards read by my old friend at home. She’s so accurate it’s scary. I need to work through many things, but it’s going to be such an amazing, fabulous journey. Met up with my friend whose birthday was a day before mine and we took off for the beach. As I sat there in silence, I remembered thinking about what the beach would look like from my own beach at home. The water was so turquoise in color and the waves were so strong that day. I knew it would be beautiful, but I don’t think I imagined it would look like this.

 

We went for some Thai food and then the night market. The night market is a whole different experience and I highly recommend going to one if you ever go to an Asian country with them. One will find any food imaginable that’s local. We were near the ocean, so there was a  variety of seafood choices. I saw some mussels and shells that almost look like periwinkles come back home, which reminded me of my grandmother. When my grandma was little, she didn’t have much money so they would go to the ocean and get a bunch of periwinkles and eat those. I have to be extremely careful what I eat because I don’t want anything to make me sick. I had tried some gelato and fries. 


Shopping at the night markets are always fun. You can usually find good deals. I was able to find some cool shells. My friend asked me if I wanted to go get massages, and I thought that’d be a cool way just to unwind and celebrate. We saw a tank of fish and she said, “Oh, we can get a  fish massage.” That had to be one of the weirdest things I’ve done. The way the fish eat the dead skin off your feet is crazy. It felt like constant tickling. I did get used to it after a while, but it’s so weird. Overall it was an unbelievable day. This is the first time I spent my birthday with a friend, and it was cool to share that with her.


My birthday wishes

To continue to grow as a person

 To continue to accept Dawn Marie for who she is

 to love me unconditionally

 To find my soulmate. (She’s already in my field, I just need to bump into her)

To live in a healthy way

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Get your big girl pants on!

One of the best lessons you can learn in life is to master how to remain calm. Calm is a superpower- Bruce Lee

This weekend was great! I went to Longdong Bay, up in New Taipei, which is in Northeast Taiwan. Decided to go on an adventure hike. It is my birthday gift from me to challenge myself and to see how much drive I have to push through adversity.  

The women on the hike are really sweet and two were from New England. As we began the hike, the views of the ocean were spectacular. We began by going through these very prickly plants. Boy, those rocks were big! 

  • Are we climbing them???  Yep, Dawn, get your big girl pants on!

We had to use a technique called scrambling to get up the rocks. You find tiny openings where you can put your hands and feet in between the rock to pull yourself. It was a challenge. I’ve grown so much! Yes, I was scared but I didn’t think I can’t do this. I was just focused on doing what I needed to do to get up that rock. I used every part of my body to climb.  If I needed to sit down on my butt, I would. If I needed to crawl, I did it. No judgment on myself.


We made it up the steep part of the rock, and the guide let us eat lunch. Then she said we are going to repel down the mountain. She showed us exactly what to do. I was second to go. As I got strapped, this feeling of nervousness hit

  • Where are my feet going to go?
  •  No worries, they will naturally go where they need to?

Although I was scared and my legs couldn’t stop shaking, I sat back, lowered my body, and started to go down the mountain. This is something I never pictured doing, but I’m doing it now.


After hiking some, I saw something silver fall. I looked at my bracelet and the feather had fallen off. I guess it was meant to be in the ocean. Towards the end of the hike, my legs began to feel like Jell-O and I was tired. In the last part of the hike, I was drained. We had to climb up a forest type area that had rocks, but also much mud. It was a big incline, I was tired, and it was very slippery. I had a hard time breathing, but I kept pushing through. Once I finally made it to the top, I was relieved.


 Looking at it again later, I’m proud of what I accomplished. If you are in Taiwan, I highly recommend the Bivy Rock Climbing Guides. They are a husband and wife who are very kind and love what they do. Kelly is the best. If you want to challenge yourself, check them out.  https://www.facebook.com/thebivytaiwan


Relaxed today, cleaned the house and took a bath.

 Listened to Abraham Hicks (AH) in the bathtub and the words spoke to me.


  •  The basis of your life is absolute freedom. No one can vibrate for you.
  •  Happiness is your ultimate Quest!  to allow yourself to be happy instead of being right, instead of owning something or being with somebody right now. It won’t take long before you find the universe unfolding giving you things that you can’t even imagine.

 6 more days till my birthday!!

Taiwan Pride

The only queer people are those who don’t love anybody- Rita Mae Brown

Currently in Taipei. Came here for Pride. It was a cool event to go to. So interesting to see how others celebrate Pride. Way too crowded, though. Too much energy. Not into that anymore. So interesting what the girls look like. So many look like little boys, like the group BTS that my nieces like. It’s what they consider tomboys out here. I saw most of them with fem girls.


 I never fit into a box. Sometimes, actually, many times, I feel like I don’t fit in anywhere, even in my own community. 


  • Who’s going to love Dawn for me? 
  • Trust the universe, Dawn, in time. You have so much to offer, your partner is here, be patient.

 

I planned to check out a club called Taboo Club. https://www.facebook.com/TABOONightClub

It looks to be a wild place with shot girls pouring alcohol in your mouth and ladies partying it up. 

 I’m not into clubs anymore but wanted to have the experience of a Taiwan women’s club. Unfortunately, my old age caught up to me. Lol, I arrived at the hotel and passed out. 


This InHouse hotel is the bomb. Heated toilet, bidet, and an amazing view right in the gay section. All for 60 USD https://www.inhousehotel.com/.


Today, enjoy my time in the city, check out some lesbian businesses and get myself a birthday cake.

A single star

Discomfort- When you are on your healing journey you will experience discomfort on pretty much every level possible. This is completely normal. Teach yourself. Hold your own hand as you walk through the darkness. You will find your way out eventually. I promise

Day off today. Double ten holiday tomorrow. Went to a picnic with my co-workers. It was a good time. Then one of my co-workers took me to a temple down the street. God- protector of the land. Small yet really cool vibe to it. 


Tonight I came home and was just down, lonely. Thoughts running through my mind. Will I meet people? I should get out more. Will I meet my one? Cried a lot. Very open here – can’t hide from anything. It’s exposed, and to be honest, no one here to lean on but me. I was feeling down, and I went outside on my balcony. 

Saw one star. I’m never lonely; my angels are with me, my ancestors, God is with me. I began to see more stars, which is a tough thing to see in the city- signs! 

I saw an Angel in the clouds. I could hear a voice say, “Dawn Marie, we are always with you.” 


  • I will find someone that loves me back. 
  • I will find someone in the community.
  • I will find someone who treats me as I treat them. 

Thank you to the sisters that reach out! Thank you to the ones I will meet soon enough! I love you God for the reminder you are always with me. Grateful for my angels, spirit guides, ancestors, vovoa and Auntie Diane.


10:10, 10:11, 6:11, 7:11, 2:11, 5:11, 3:11, 4:11, 1:11, 9:11, 11:11, 8:11


Here’s to new beginnings!

Born to be wild!

The thing about transition is that you’re no longer who you were and are unaware of what you’re becoming!

Crazy how time flies! So much going on since I last wrote in here. I’ve been able to go out with my co-workers which has been fun. Went hiking and shopping and had a blast. Parent’s day this weekend.  On certain days we have Saturday school like if we have a holiday we make it up on a Saturday. Parent’s day we needed to come in half-day. My fellow counselor took me for a ride on her scooter. Drives like a mad woman. For those of you who have been in a NYC taxi think that times ten. No rules to follow.  Going between cars, in and out of lanes. I held on for my life.  


As we were speeding by, it was almost as if time slowed down and I was noticing the bright rays as the sun shined on the rice fields. The unique lines of the  words in Chinese labeled on food stands. The pink helmet that my coworker had with her stickers of bears precisely placed on the side of her helmet.  How the hell did I get here? How was I so lucky to experience all of this? Thank you universe for this opportunity. No matter how difficult I may think life gets, remember these simple moments Dawn.  

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