Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Karen Kronenberger - Celebrating Love

Taking the Plunge

          Sometimes you meet someone and instantly feel that they are “an old soul.” I consider that a compliment and I hope Karen Kronenberger does too!
          In the few times we met we learned we shared common interests, including kayaking and writing. The former allows for time on calm waters for introspection of life and appreciation of beauty. The latter is a gift to be shared, often times elaborating on thoughts that evolved while being on the water.
          One can rarely plan the path one’s life takes, but to make the best of what comes your way and grow and be willing to share in one’s discoveries is a gift.
          Meet a truly wonderful “old soul” who has done just that.

Karen Kronenberger

With forty years experience as a social worker, therapist, public speaker, manager, grant writer, planner, and developer/marketer of programs, I have created and conducted 100’s of personal growth groups, trained the trainers and written curriculum. At the pinnacle of those years, I was awarded USA Congressional recognition for my work and was a Goodwill Industries "Honoree of the Century.” Now I am retired and on to my next adventure.
My favorite place to live in the whole world has been the Pacific NW.  The stunning beauty of Discovery Bay and the Cascades, even when fog covered, greeted me every morning for the six years I made the area my home. In 2010, I wept through painful personal and physical changes. While on the mend I received a call from my family in Ohio. My mother, in her late eighties, needed a caregiver so she could continue living in her home. I moved to Ohio. I had not lived in Ohio for almost twenty-five years and it was culture shock. Living in the “’burbs” in city congestion and in a land where conservative values dominated left me feeling trapped. I sorely missed my dear friends in Clallam and Jefferson Counties.
The good news is that during the period of adjustment, I delighted in time spent with family. Five of my siblings and their families entertained me and my daughter’s family moved back to the area from Maryland.  
Additionally, I chose to use this time to learn to love myself and involve myself more fully in another love - writing.  Over the years I have participated in three significant writers’ groups and have encouraged writers to publication. For many years I thought fiction was my voice, now I also write memoir, opinion pieces and poetry. I was happily settled into my writing routine when an unexpected star burst into my life. 
At age sixty-seven, I was asked to become an ordained minister.  It seemed an odd request because I am a confirmed agnostic. My spiritual path has taught me to respect the journey and not religion. I became a minister giving spiritual encouragement to Buddhists, Christians, atheists, pagans and to anyone hungry for spiritual or personal growth.
Recently I have been able to combine my ministry with my love of writing. After reading one of my prose poems to a favorite theologian, Mathew Fox, and others in leadership at a Creation Spirituality gathering, they asked me to submit my work for their newsletter and website.
Guess this old woman isn’t dead yet. I have entered my next phase of celebrating love. I am.


1.      Who are you? List 5 words that define you!

Introspective – Playful – Tenacious – Caring - Learner

2.      What have you done that you’re most proud of?

Successfully raising two children is the highlight of my life. They survived my rebellious swim upstream against the norm and thrived.

3.      If you could change one thing in your past, what would it be?

To rewind the clock and have recognized symptoms of abuse among some of those closest to me sooner than I did would have been the one thing I wished I could have changed. I could have been more protective.

4.      On a personal/client level, what drives you crazy? What gives you joy?

I drive me crazy. I am way too judgmental and critical. It sometimes freezes me in place. My goal is to live more fully moment to moment and in a state of mindfulness. 

What gives me joy is to honor the sacred mystery of the cosmos, from the tiniest particle in a grain of sand to the biggest star. We are after all, stardust.

5.      Given no restrictions (i.e. money/physical capabilities) – what would you most like to do? 

To love so well that the powers to be would hear and act, the earth would begin to heal, and all people could love and be loved with genuine love.

Coming out of a fish!

2nd Place Volleyball Champ

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