The lingering haze does not take away the endless visibility of NASA’s horizon, as I entered the gates last night.

It is more like an intense unused feeling you experience for the first time, as soon as you arrive here.

There seems to be this additional layer of reality that rests on the blank space around you.

I searched for the stars above the Kennedy Space Center’s two lane roads and when I located them they appeared to hang a little further down.

The horizon at NASA spoke to the grounds of the earth as if they were in a relationship that can never end.

These grounds have vibrated, and given birth to so many explorers and adventurers, that they came alive as I drove above them.

The roads led me to launch pads and buildings that were scattered throughout this vast gated land.

Somehow grief shrinks here as if it has no power over infinity.

And last night, I felt the vibrations from the earth in my chest, and in the midst of a dark night next to the ocean, I saw a star like rocket go up into space. (watch the video here.)

It was so bright, bright like a big star getting up close with earth.

The light surrounded me as if it wanted to take me to space with it.

As if I was going on a big grand adventure.

And as I witnessed the grandness of our humanity, the possibility of so much more than we know, I felt that this life we live in has to have magnificence in it. It has to have awe and thrills.

No matter what has happened to you, to me, our souls yearn for the majestic. (Click to Tweet!)

They yearn for the miraculous.

For the infinity. For the impossible.

And as you read this today, I beg you to go out there and look for your next thrill.

For your majestic moment.

It could be found on a first kiss.

It could be hiding on a hike.

It could even be inside your house, on a bookshelf, inside a book.

It could be in your children’s love.

At the beach.

But in order to find it you have to remember how it was to be a kid.

Last night, as I was waiting for the rocket to lift off, I heard myself say to the person next to me, I feel like a kid right now.

And I don’t remember the last time I felt like this.

Grief robs us from our kid like experience. Don’t let it. (Click to Tweet!)

Your homework for this weekend is to do something that will make you say “I feel like a kid.” Even for a few moments.

For just a few seconds to have this feeling again.

No matter how much you lost, you can bring back the magnificence of your life.

To your lift off,


P.S. Thank you NASA for saying yes and for being such an incredible dream maker.

Photo Credit: Ben Cooper /


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Christina Rasmussen is an author, speaker and social entrepreneur who believes that grief is an evolutionary experience required for launching a life of adventure and creative accomplishment.

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  • Beth Spicer @tweetsfrommeema says:

    Dear Christina
    I am going to share some private thoughts here. I hears about your book right after I had lost the father of my children. Although I have been happily remarried for 25 years it rocked my world. Although it was not the raw pain and sense of failure at the time of our divorce it was absolutely devastating. I received a phone call at 9:30 pm that fateful evening from my kids stepmother. She was eerily calm and clearly in shock when she said. Mike has had a heart attack and we are waiting for the coroner. I want you to call your children and tell them what’s happened to their father. First of all I moved right into denial. This cannot be happening to the same person twice- Nancy was a widow when Mike married her. I went into protective mode as a Mom and went straight to my adult daughter’s home to tell her in person. It was beyond the most horrendous thing I have ever experienced to inflict that kind of pain on my own child.

    As we pulled into her driveway the house was in darkness I felt physically ill. I tapped quietly at the door so as not to wake the grandchildren. Her husband answered the door then Emily tiptoed down the stairs asking” What’s wrong Mom is it Granddad?” “No honey it’s not Granddad. It’s so much worse it’s your Dad.” The guttural screams and cries began” Take me to my Dad take me to my Dad” over and over as she ran out the front door. Shock is so ugly. It’s raw uncensored agony. As my husband stayed behind with the sleeping children my Son in law who was also reeling in pain drove us to her Father’s home. On route we called my son in another city 5 hours away and I had the dreadful task of breaking his heart as well.

    The next days weeks and were as you would expect filled with stunned shock a funeral the internment of Mike’s ashes 3 weeks later . Someone from our church spoke to me at the funeral and said ” I’ll bet this is a bitter sweet experience for you” I replied ” You’d be wrong then. It’s all very bitter and painful” I felt like screaming but that’s not nice to do to a nun is it?- (please never print this part)

    Three months later my own father passed away at age 95 . It had been expected and I had cared for him and my Mom for over 10 years . He was tired and ready to be with Mom but it still so heartbreaking to watch your parents draw their last breath.

    I felt like I would never get past last year but my precious Grandchildren give me such joy! My husband walked every step of the way with me in what felt like cement shoes.

    Now for my homework about being a kid again. I want to tell you that this weekend I am taking a family cruise with my grandchildren.
    They have asked Meema- that’ s me to join them on the waterslide and I said sure if you can stand the screaming! We will snorkel in Grand Cayman and dance at the sail away party.

    Please follow me on twitter @ tweets from Meema.

    Thank you for writing Second Firsts for putting your pain out there and showing us how healing can and does happen if we decide to be happy.
    Wasn’t that NASA rocket launch last night just out of this world?

    Lots of Love Always
    Beth xo

  • Carm says:

    hi Ladies,
    I a sad for all of us. This was a heartfelt moment to read and share.
    I’ll try very hard to be a kid again. Even for just a minute. I don’t know how to be anyone else anymore. I still want to be Tom’s wife. I can’t remember who I was before…
    Thank you ladies. Your sharing helps me.

  • Suzanne DeMoss says:


    I was there for the rocket launch too, further South down the beach on The Cocoa Beach Pier with my best friend & her husband who just happens to be my cousin, we had dinner on the pier, then watched the launch, it was beautiful & I did feel like a kid along with every other adult on that pier.

    One year ago I lost my husband John to lung cancer, after a long illness & being his caregiver which I will never regret every second of time I got to spend with him, but one year ago just after John’s funeral & celebration of life this same friend & I went to this same area for me to just decompress before handling all the million details you have to handle after a death, it was a brief reprieve from the painful & emotionally exhausting mind numbing reality of all the details of post loss & my new normal of life without my love.

    I still miss John everyday & I will always miss him, but I am amazed at the difference a year has made, last year I cried constantly could feel nothing but pain & didn’t care if I lived or died but this year it was like I have left the waiting room and am relearning how to live one baby step at a time. I promised John I would try to live again & I feel like it is honoring his life to live again. Thank you for your encouragement!

    I want to say to each person who is hurting & feels like they will never stop to try to take baby steps every day & if you need to you can always step back take a breath & recharge for the next babystep, never look too far back or ahead it is overwhelming, live each day & enjoy the beauty & awe of it and then start again tomorrow to see what joy & beauty it holds. Love, healing, peace & joy to all! Take one babystep, dip your toe in the water, smell the roses & live each day to the best of your ability no matter where you are on your journey today!

  • Erin McRaven says:

    I’ll keep this short…. Christina, this was a magnificent post! As my own childhood was pretty restricted, and my adulthood has been even MORE restrictive, I’ve been thinking a LOT about this very subject lately. One of the things I’ve been doing to try to remember who I was, and who I was trying to be when I was little is to re-read my favorite book from childhood for the first time in 30 years…… “The Hobbit”.
    I’m also doing goofy, decorating things outside of my camper!!!

    Love to you, and congratulations on reaching the stars!!!!!

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