I am taking a side jaunt in my writing today to write a memory of a truly special woman that I had the honor to know.

I first met Naava Piatka when I was in a course called The Wisdom Course. It was through a company called Landmark Education and the course was about having the highest form of Wisdom- Fun, Play, and Ease-in your life. The course required that we create ‘playgroups.’ And so Naava opened her home and provided heartfelt hospitality for her group. I was actually not in Naava’s group. But the warmth she provided, as well as the inspiration I felt from her, had me come many times so that I begin to feel that this group was my second group- and I belonged fully.

I remember being in Naava’s house and hearing about her one woman show,”BETTER DON’T TALK!” and thinking ‘Wow, what an inspiration.’ Clearly she was living her dreams, loving her life, and being successful at it. I felt humbled, for I, an actress and singer in my bones and soul, had never truly actualized on that potential.

Naava’s show was about the life of her holocaust surviving/ actress mother. It was powerful and meaningful- so even more inspiring to me. In person Naava was a warm, generous, smiling presence- who emanated no sense of self-accolades or ego about what she did. And I remember, as a former art consultant, admiring the beautiful pieces of artwork on her walls and thinking, “Well, she must be financially successful to have such a largess of beautiful artwork.” Whereupon I looked at the signatures to find out the artists’ name, and noticed it was her own.

At which point I thought, “Is there anything this woman does NOT do- and do well?”

I read Naava’s obituary yesterday and realized that I knew about 1/8 of all that she had done and accomplished in her time on this earth. And most of what she did was to the betterment or enlightenment of mankind. So that to me, Naava achieved the two very highest objectives one can achieve on this earth 1) to live your dreams, fulfill all of your potential, and love your life and 2) To help others to do the same.

Naava died of cancer a few days ago. She left behind the book that she had written in the last few months of life when she knew she was passing. It was the one undone thing on her ‘bucket list’ and so she did it. The book, called “NO GOODBYES”, is a father daughter memoir about love, war, and resurrection.

Goodbye, lovely Naava,and may your presence emanate from each of us that you touched, and each of us that you will touch. Let us, like you, fulfill on the same possibility of life…

And then pass it on to others.