Cracking Open

Mark J. Janssen
4 min readFeb 29, 2024

The last four years have been a time of unexpected spiritual and personal growth for me. It’s better than when I went off to college and suddenly had my head and my soul cracked wide open. It was unexpected then and it’s a surprise now.

We moved all the way across the United States in 2020. The day following our arrival in our new home the government started closing down the country because of the Covid epidemic. That was a rude shock. We had plans for this new town. There were things to do things, places to go and discoveries to be made. I definitely planned on getting a new job because it’s what I always did. Perhaps life was all the ruder because we had both already had some horrible unknown flu that we felt was going to kill us. Many of our friends in the West had been ill as well. We survived that killer disease. It was called Covid by the time we moved.

Part of survival in the time of Covid was discovering how life would never be the same again. It came as a shock to discover that no one would hire me regardless of my solid resume. After six months of letting the blow sink in, I gradually accepted the fact that there may be other things in life. Such as retiring at age sixty-six rather than working until seventy-five as I had planned. Retirement for me meant not going to an office and cranking out spreadsheets. Never has it or will it mean that my spiritual work is over.

I was lousy at adjusting to the new reality. Even if I couldn’t go to an office, I could still read the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg and my other favorite…

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Mark J. Janssen

Mark Janssen is a spiritual warrior, mystic and author. His writes a weekly blog. His memoir “Reach for the Stars” is available online and in bookstores.