fly like an eagle

I want to fly like an eagle, to the sea. Fly like an eagle, let my spirit carry me.

- Steve Miller Band

It was 11:00am on the first day of 2012. Feeling surprisingly un-hungover and sufficiently satiated from our breakfast burrito/Bloody Mary brunch with friends in Lake Arrowhead, I began to comprise my mental list of resolutions, goals and intentions for the new year. Somewhere between questioning whether I should throw a big party or get a boob job for my impending fortieth birthday, I heard my friend Hayley calling my name from outside.

Considering that only fourteen hours prior that same friend had spotted a mountain lion a few houses away from our rental cabin, I was a bit hesitant to run outside. But then I heard her more clearly,

“Mary, come quick, it’s a bald eagle.”

She pointed up to one of three lithe pine trees outside our cabin and described where exactly I should look. After a few seconds of trying to eyeball through the needles and cones, I spotted it.

fly like an eagle

I am not usually one to be swept up in awe over animals or nature, unless there are jazz hands involved, but this beautiful specimen had me captivated. I ran inside to grab my camera and call for my husband. Thankfully we made it in time to capture some photos.

We stood and watched her as she gazed around at the lake and surrounding area. Ultimately she flew far into the distance, but not without first leaving me with an indelible mark on me.

You see, my dad’s tombstone reads “Our Guiding Eagle,” so not only was that eagle a breathtaking vision, but it was also a symbol. I was able to soar for the first 29 years of my life because of his guidance and strength. Since his death, one of my biggest challenges has been being able to find the strength to soar without him. As I begin this year with a new book to market and website to launch, both about the loss of my dad, I will treasure that sighting as a sign that I’m on the right path. A sign that I can soar.



  1. 1
    Jessica says:

    Wow! Thats breathtaking!! Im sure it was a sign that your father is with you. Congratulations on your book!

  2. 2
    Jen says:

    Oh my God! Goose bumps and tears.

    It is so amazing that he is watching over you and proud of you.

    What a wonderful way to start the new year.

  3. 3
    The Sweetest says:

    Absolutely beautiful. And what a wonderful way to start a new year.

  4. 4

    As someone who is *easily* swept up in awe over animals or nature, I am totally into this great moment you had on New Year’s Day. I have your book on my list for this year and I can’t wait for the website. (I’m still doing a lot of writing about my father, thanks all to you, Mary.) Fly high, woman, you deserve it.

  5. 5
    Maegan says:

    Mary, whether you know it or not, you soar. You heart soars, your soul soars, your smile soars. You are an amazing person. Glad I met you in 2011!

  6. 6
    Dalai Lina says:

    That is wonderful! You know, according to Animal Speaks by Ted Andrews, a siting of a bald eagle means “Spirit vision and healing surround you. Look at things from a new perspective. Take another path. Trust what you are becoming.” Sounds like your dad is right there with you :)

  7. 7
    mariana salerno says:

    Wow wow wow, this made me cry…I definitely think it’s a sign, your dad is with you. What a spectacular way to kick off 2012, it’s going to be a great year!!

  8. 8

    Awesome. I love signs like that.

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