Sunday, August 23, 2020


Last week I was feeling so sad for young people, for their dreams being put on hold and their loneliess. But then I realized this: We have to see our children through the eyes of love, and not fear. During this pause, this strange time in the world, our children are learning to 'go within' and find their inner resilience, peace and power. This process of finding the strength within, is what is meant by "The kingdom of heaven is within you." I am not religious but these truths are so real and powerful. We must stop mourning their process. We must envision a better experience for our children. The vision we hold of them becomes our reality. Let them fly. They will have a deeper appreciation of life after Covid. They will still reach their dreams and have better dreams. They will come up with solutions to the worlds' chaos. They will re-emerge with more love and compassion for humanity. They will be a less selfish generation. We cannot see the invisible harmony of the universe but GOOD is the default setting. Progress is always going on. Let us "see" a different experience for the younger generation. Just like a diamond, a good soul is formed under pressure.

Tuesday, June 09, 2020



Lydia Cornell

The only response to hatred is love.
                                    Wayne Dyer 

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which can not fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance;
 That principle is contempt prior to investigation."
                                     Herbert Spencer

One day when my son was 8 years old, in third grade, he came home from school with a notice from the principal saying that a 10-year-old boy had died overnight from a high fever. We had never met this boy or his family, but I felt the mother’s pain so deeply it shattered me. I looked up the family name in the school directory to see if they had any other children, which they did: one other son in ninth grade at our local high school. My own son had also been home from school that week, suffering from a similar fever.
         Through my tears, I prayed deeply for this mother — pouring compassion out to her, holding her in my heart with the divine love that passes all understanding. I asked God to comfort her, to fill her with peace. I was on my knees saying the Lord’s prayer. And then the tears stopped. It was four o’clock in the afternoon, the day after the boy’s death. I felt an urgent need to get in my car and find this woman. All I knew was that she lived in a large apartment building on Rexford Drive, a few blocks away. The car seemed to drive itself down the street, and at the end of the block, I saw a woman in a bathrobe, pacing the sidewalk, bleary-eyed. She looked at me with a sadness I will never forget. I parked in a driveway and rolled down the window. “Are you Benjamin’s mother?” I asked, getting out of the car. The woman ran towards me — literally rushing into my arms, sobbing. We held each other, both of us crying and she said “Did God send you?”

The woman was Korean, and explained in broken English that she had just come outside to search for her husband, who had disappeared in grief earlier that day. She asked if I would come in and look at pictures of her son. We went inside and she showed me her son’s “room,” which was just a corner of the living room. Though this was Beverly Hills, they lived modestly in a one-bedroom apartment. Both sons slept in the living room.  She showed me Benjamin’s report card, schoolwork, baseball trophies, Yugioh cards — which were just like my son’s.  She poured tea and told me all the wonderful things about Benjamin. 
         I silently asked the universe to give me the right words to say, and out of my mouth came some memories formed into words I could not take credit for.  I told her about my precious brother Paul and how he had come to me in a vision a few days after his death. I’ll never forget this because I was driving my car and literally had to pull over and stop. On the radio they were playing the song from the Disney movie “Pocahontas” with the lyric “Who knows how high the Sycamore grows, if you cut it down you’ll never know.”  This struck me because we had Paul’s memorial service underneath a giant Sycamore tree. My head collapsed onto the steering wheel I was crying so hard.  Suddenly, out of nowhere, a surge of warmth and light filled my body and I bolted upright in my seat. I saw my brother’s face beaming at me, smiling so broadly I had never seen him like this.  He told me not to cry, that he'd “see me later,” that “there is no death.” He even said “I love you Lydia; you helped me.” This was in 1995, on the third day after I had found his body, dead from a drug overdose.  I felt completely at peace about him from then on. 
         I kept a picture of Paul by my bedside that week, with a candle burning next to it. One morning three days after his death, my toddler Jack, who was a year and a half old, woke up, giggled, pointed to the picture and said, “Paul happy!” This gives me goose bumps even now when I remember it.  Now I’m going to sound completely loony, but on the day we scattered his ashes at sea, before we left for the boat, three white doves alighted on our lawn, and these were not doves for hire.  What is it with the number three? 
         As I sat with the woman, I told her that her son Benjamin was a gift that she was blessed with for ten years and now God needed him back home for bigger things. I told her “our children are on loan to us.” I don't know where these words came from. 
         As she walked me out she said she felt an enormous wave of peace come over her.  “I was so depressed and now I feel I was visited by an angel.” It dawned on me that we can all be comforters or ‘human angels’ for each other when we open up and begin to really care about others. 
         Our entire school attended Benjamin’s funeral. During the eulogy, the minister read a letter written by the mother, in which she said: “Benjamin was a gift to us for ten years, and now God called him back home for more important things…"

         It’s amazing how love uses us when we make ourselves available. I've had full-blown miracles and healings from prayer -- and I’ve come to rely on ceaseless prayer for every problem in life including overcoming lifelong “genetic” diseases, as I describe later in this book.  But the best kind is praying for others with compassion. Buddhists believe strongly that people must immerse themselves in feeling other’s pain in order to gain the compassion that heals the world.  When your heart is full of love for your fellow man, you can reach out and actually change people’s lives.  This is what Jesus taught. The Great Peacemaker was not concerned with anything other than how we treat our fellow man. “Love one another. Love our enemies, return love for hate… Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” 
After my crash and burn, I began to transcend my ego in fits and starts. It did not succumb willingly.  Sometimes the ego is so big it needs an apartment of its own.  
But the most important change was when I began to have more compassion for others.  I believe that’s the main idea: to transcend our demanding egos and put others first. There’s no time to waste; we all need to get over ourselves and branch out. As Christ said, “you have to lose your life to save it,” and the St. Francis Prayer,“It is by self-forgetting that one finds.” I always tell my children, “No matter how much you acquire or accomplish in life, if you’re not kind to others, you’ve missed the whole point.”
         “How can I be of love and service to others?”  This is the question I’ve been trying to remember to ask myself every day.  One time out of ten I’m able to get out of my self-centeredness and actually do it! There are so many times I’ve received a nudge to extend myself to help someone, but out of laziness or fear, I’ve ignored the call.
Often I didn’t feel equipped to help others because I was such a mess myself. But they say, ‘the answers will come if our own house is in order,’ meaning, once we have eliminated our own defects of character that keep us separate from our fellow man — condemnation and judgment of others, pride, greed, envy and all the other deadly “sins” — we are of better use to the world. 
         “Compassion for others is impossible when we are filled with a belief that we are separate and distinct from other human beings,” says Wayne Dyer.  Love really does heal everything. But ‘faith without works is dead,” and we are all called to get out of ourselves and help each other, like the Good Samaritan. 

Wednesday, May 27, 2020


I am so honored to be on the cover of this amazing magazine with my story of overcoming, tragedy, depression, and addiction. Click here for instant access to the spread containing dozens of celebrity photos and in depth Q & A

The Women Issue - Exclusive Interviews With Actress, Comedienne, Writer and Director Lydia Cornell. She Is Best Known For Her Starring Role On The Hit ABC Series "Too Close For Comfort" As Emmy Legend Ted Knight's Daughter 'Sara' Plus HBO’s Curb; and 250 TV shows and films. Plus Accomplished Athletes Katie Phan A Truly Awe-Inspiring Story Of A Blind Person's Commitment To Master The Sport Of Judo:

We are facing daunting times with many questions and few certain answers. However, one thing is certain – we will get through this together as a family, as a nation and as a world. 
For seven years now, SOHM has been putting a spotlight on inspirational, positive stories focusing on people that, despite personal struggles, have made it in “Hollywood.”  However, their stories don’t end there -- these individuals are now finding ways to give back to others, facing their own life struggles, by lending their time and resources.Enjoy and Stay Safe.  SOHM Team

 Actors Fund:


Prayer is focusing so completely on the good, that good becomes all you see. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Care Package starring Lydia Cornell and Linda Purl - Viral Vignettes # 6

"Care Package" A Comedy to benefit the Actors Fund, starring Linda Purl and Lydia Cornell "premieres" right now on Youtube. Directed by Happy Days' Donny Most, this HILARIOUS and brilliant short film was written by the prolific Frederick Stroppel and produced by Emmy winner David P. Levinfor Pop Goes the Culture TV. We had a blast filming this Zoom TV series. 

Sunday, April 26, 2020

"An Eerie Sort of Calm Over New York City ~ COVID-19, A Nurse's Story

An eerie sort of calm has begun to fall over New York City  Not the reassuring kind of calm that signals the return of peace and order, more of an anxiety filled lull.  I’ve watched as the amount of patients in the ER has dropped in the last two weeks from over 100 to 27 yesterday when I clocked out. Empty stretchers line the hallways, nurses are sitting down for what seems like the first time in weeks, doctors scrolling social media at the desk, patients have started to return for minor complaints that seemed to have vanished over the previous month.  But it’s hard to feel exactly hopeful; we have no idea what the coming months will bring.  The idea that “normal” does not exist any more is rightfully terrifying. There is no doubt that there will be a second wave of this, a third… it’s really a race between science and nature.  I understand the frustration of everyone who wants to return to work, to see their friends and loved ones, but I am so terrified of what might happen once people begin gathering in large numbers again.  

I will be haunted forever by some of that I’ve seen in the last 6 weeks.  Coding a patient in a room where he was cohorted with another covid positive patient, watching him watch as we unsuccessfully tried to restart the heart of the man who laid in the bed next to his.  Watching the palliative care doctor facetime with a patient’s family members as they said their goodbyes, and then her turning me and telling me to take the patient off the bipap mask that was keeping her alive at 2 pm, place her on a nasal cannula and push drugs to make her comfortable.  Having to be the last person she heard, holding her hand and telling her that her family loved her, and then having to rush off to try to keep my dozen other patients medicated and safe.  Worse than this, coming around the corner to find that one of my DNR/DNI patients had passed.  Alone.  While I and everyone else was too busy to be by her side.  Living with the guilt that I couldn’t honor her and her family by being beside her.  I did not “sign up for this”. It’s a catastrophe.    

Taking report from a coworker and not being able to control my tears.  13 patients.  All admitted.  Two DNR/DNI on the verge of passing at any moment.  One on a heparin drip.  One on an insulin drip.  Every single one with medications due, labs to be drawn.  No one has eaten.  No one can use the bathroom by themselves.  People are lying in dirty beds, everyone’s dignity shattered but when forced to choose between administering life saving medications and change someone’s sheets, I have to make heartbreaking choices.  What if it were me in that bed, or my own mother?  What we were doing was not nursing.  It’s not “part of the job.”  It’s a war zone.  

Not enough oxygen tanks, not enough IV pumps, not enough non-rebreather masks, not enough pulse oximetry monitors, not enough nurses, not enough med techs, not enough stretchers, not enough hands, not enough medication, not enough isolation gowns, not enough face shields, not enough room in the morgue, not enough thoughts and prayers, not enough leadership, not enough foresight, not enough trust in science.  No amount of you calling us “heroes” makes any part of the mismanagement of this crisis acceptable.  We will carry these scars forever. 

We have to be cautious and patient as we move forward.  We have to embrace a new normal.  Just because you survived the initial onslaught of COVID-19 does not guarantee that you or me will be as lucky a second time.  We cannot be cavalier about our safety and the safety of those around us.  My heart is broken by the images in the media of people calling me and my colleagues liars.  My heart breaks for those whose ignorance will cost them their lives, or worse yet, the lives of those around them who aren’t strong enough to fight this off.  But we are living in a nation guided by a leader who champions ignorance, who has cultivated a false narrative in this nation that equates Americanism with the right to do and say whatever you want regardless of consequence. The blood of those who will continue to fall victim to this virus will be forever on his hands as he willingly encourages his supporters to fight for their right to protest stay at home orders.  

I will keep showing up.  I will keep practicing gratitude every single day for my health and wellbeing, and that of my family and friends.  I will feel the hope that electrifies me at 7 pm when my neighbors open their windows and doors and cheer for all of us on the frontlines fighting for a chance at normal, whatever that will mean.  And I will pray for the day that rational leadership returns to our country.