Three Truths

cafeardourlight

1. Truth: Knowing what you want is just the first step. You can be so clear about what your destination is, about it being right for you, but that alone doesn’t get you there. It’s simply a good place to start, a beginning.

2. Truth: Even if you know where you intend to land, there are many tiny steps on the path to getting there. I know there’s a lot of encouragement to lean in, play big, take the leap, with the promise that you’ll magically land where you want, but I don’t think it happens just like that for most people. In fact, I’ve found that many who try to sell their story like it was that easy simply skip the middle, leave out the messy bits.

3. Truth: Patience is essential. Especially when you can see exactly where you want to go, it can be frustrating to wait, to do the small work of getting there, and yet it’s the only way to travel, the only way to get from here to there. And just know that even when it seems like you aren’t getting anywhere, more than likely something is shifting.

One wish: May we relax into the time and effort it takes, resting when we need to, taking it as slow as we need to go, working out one thing at a time, one step and then another, patient with the process and gentle with ourselves, trusting in our own knowing.

Something Good

End of summer berries

End of summer berries

1. What Is Weight-Neutral Workplace Wellness and Why Should we Consider it? “The literature on weight, weight loss, and the relationship between weight and health indicates that the weight-focused approach to health does more harm than good.” Word. In related news, Women: Stop apologizing for eating.

2. Recipes I’d like to try: zucchini, tomato and rice gratin (gratins are my new favorite way to use up a lot of veggies at once), Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo, Easy Oven Baked Spicy Chicken Tacos (you had me at “easy”), The Best Oven-Fried Chicken Recipes You’ll Ever Make, Takeout-Style Sesame Noodles, takeout-style sesame noodles with cucumber, and Chocolate Peanut Butter Brown Rice Crispy Treats.

3. Beacon Food Forest Permaculture Project, one of the best ideas EVER. “The goal of the Beacon Food Forest is to design, plant and grow an edible urban forest garden that inspires our community to gather together, grow our own food and rehabilitate our local ecos.”

4. Remember from Patti Digh. In related news, What Do You Do On A Day Like This?

5. Heartwarming moment girl asks her stepdad to adopt her on his birthday. I’ve watched this so many times.

6. Tim Gunn: Designers refuse to make clothes to fit American women. It’s a disgrace.. In related news, Tim Gunn’s Plus Size Mistake.

7. Leon Bridges Tiny Desk Concert. “Take Me to Your River” is especially amazing.

8. The Robin Hood Army is ending food waste and feeding the hungry.

9. Stanford Professor Puts His Entire Digital Photography Course Online for Free. So cool.

10. Your High-Intensity Feelings May Be Tiring You Out.

11. Marijuana is literally saving the lives of our veterans.

12. How Was Burning Man? “A guy who just got back from Burning Man struggles mightily to explain what Burning Man was like to a loser who’s never been to Burning Man.” Hilarious.

13. Deaht is Actually Very Funny: a Last Conversation with Poet Max Ritvo.

14. I walked out of the Brisbane Writers Festival Keynote Address. This is why. This is so important.

15. Wisdom from Seth Godin, “Just because it’s dark it doesn’t mean we’re underground. It often means that no one has bothered to turn on any lights.”

16. Things I Didn’t Buy.

17. An Open Letter to that Lady who has All the Answers to #NoDAPL.

18. The One Thing You Need Less of Right Now (your life depends on it). In related news, 7 Small Habits That Will Steal Your Happiness.

19. Bigger, Better, Different. “We can’t always see what’s working, just as we can’t always see what’s not working. We can only keep showing up and paying attention.” A beautiful post by Jena Schwartz.

Gratitude Friday

weddingfavors

1. A beautiful wedding. I’m so glad I got to be a part of it, that I didn’t mess anything up.

2. Three day weekend. It felt really good to get things done AND get to rest.

3. Clarity. It can be scary to face the truth about what you want and how things aren’t working, even more terrifying to talk to other people about it and then attempt to do something about it, but it’s way better than confusion.

4. Ringo and Sam. Their training is going good, and they’ve gotten back into the habit of playing together once or twice a day so I feel confident that the chaos of this summer didn’t do any permanent damage.

5. Eric. Even though we’ve both lost our minds a little this week and some things are just hard, there’s still no one I’d rather go crazy with.

Bonus joy: Ringo helping me meditate, Sam sleeping in with me, Wild Writing class, paid sick days, good TV, good books, a date with two of my favorite people, learning new things, a clear next step, the physical therapy for my hip and back actually working, breakfast with a friend who gets it, tomato gratin, clean water, clean sheets, strawberries from my garden in my yogurt.

 

Three Truths and One Wish

image from Unsplash, by Chris Ensey

image from Unsplash, by Chris Ensey

1. Truth: Yesterday was my two year anniversary of becoming a yoga teacher. I sent an email to all the people I trained with and then posted a message my teachers would see, marking the anniversary and sending my gratitude and love. As I told them, just like yoga isn’t just about asana (the physical poses), teacher training is about so much more than learning to teach yoga.

2. Truth: I’m not sure where I’m going with my teaching, or even my practice. I gave up my regular class because we were gone over the summer and I haven’t felt inspired to try and get another on my schedule. I’m subbing some classes in the near future, but other than that I’m not teaching much. In fact, I haven’t been practicing much, at least not in a traditional way — going to a class, or getting out my mat and props and doing a full practice at home. Something is gestating, shifting around yoga for me, and I’m allowing it to happen.

3. Truth: Practice is always evolving. While I may not be doing much yoga, I’m practicing meditation and chanting like my hair is on fire. In a few weeks, I’ll start the certification process for meditation instruction through the Open Heart Project. I feel a shift around my writing too, as I enter into what feels like a season of both truth and healing. And my practice of dog has always felt like that old game, “the floor is hot lava.” And even when I get training to teach something I practice, it only reveals to me how little I know.

One wish: May our practice help us to navigate change, transform our confusion into wisdom, and liberate us from suffering.

Something Good

Lone Pine Trail, by Eric and Prisma

Lone Pine Trail, by Eric and Prisma

1. Brave Blogging with Andrea Scher, starts today! What I’ve always loved most about what Andrea offers is she creates things out of the place she is living, and because of that it’s real, covered in dirt and honey. This is another one of those things.

2. What “Rape Culture” Means, a very helpful infographic.

3. Mother is “a million times happier” after going from size eight to 18, a different kind of “before and after.” I totally relate to this story. I’d rather be fat and sane than ever go back to those dark days. In related news, 9 Disordered Eating Practices You Thought Were Normal.

4. “Sow Much Good.” Robins Emmons believes in people over profits, giving back with her organic farm that provides fresh, affordable food to low-income communities.

5. Weird jobs: the People Walker. This man doesn’t walk dogs… he walks people.

6. Recipes I’d like to try: Cheesy Zucchini Rice, and Zucchini Tots, and Peach Margarita Cooler, and Chicken Shawarma, Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Apples, and No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter & Oatmeal Cookies. In related news, Are Viral Recipes Ruining Cooking?

7. Aimed at Zika Mosquitoes, Spray Kills Millions of Honeybees. Nope. Just no.

8. Donald Glover hired an entirely black writers’ room for his new tv show. I can’t wait for this show. It looks amazing.

9. Sometimes you just have to put it out there from one of my favorite bloggers, writers, humans.

10. 23- Year Old Male Babysitter Will Only Get 30 Days For Molesting 8-Year Old Boy; Judge Says Prison Will Be Too Hard On Him, He’s Just A Boy. I thought for sure this was a joke, an article from The Onion, but no. WTF?!

11. Hundreds of thousands of immigrants are getting in citizenship lines to take down Donald J. Trump.

12. How to Race Bait from Matthew Cooke.

13. These Are The Fearless LGBTQ Youth Who Live In Jamaica’s Sewers.

14. Hello Humans, a blog project from Anne Lamott’s son Sam.

15. Everything You Need to Know to Become a Certified Yoga Instructor.

16. Your Career Homecoming Challenge hosted by Laura Simms, “a one week community challenge that will energize your workweek, connect you with others, and enter you to win great prizes.” I did it last year and it was really helpful.

17. This Veteran Just Shared An Argument-Ending Defense Of Colin Kaepernick. It’s totally worth it to take the time and read the whole thing.

18. Trans men describe their experiences with male privilege.

19. Mike Birbiglia’s 6 Tips for Making It Small in Hollywood. Or Anywhere. This is so good. “Sometimes people say, ‘One thing you have to offer in your work is yourself.’ I disagree. I think it’s the only thing.” I’m going to see his new movie this afternoon. Can’t wait.

20. Graduating and Looking for Your Passion? Just Be Patient. Really good advice.

21. Miracle Messages. A project that lets homeless people record video messages to long-lost relatives, and it’s getting them off the streets.

22. Religish Rituals: A Former Pastor Explains Why Tarot is A-Okay.

23. ‘Holy Hell’ Review: Will Allen Spent 20 Years In a Cult and All He Got Was This Documentary. Watched this yesterday. It was really good, really interesting.

24. Justifiable, wisdom from Seth Godin.

25. Self-Help List from Zen Habits.

Day of Rest

weddingflowers

Yesterday, I officiated a wedding. Earlier in the day, Eric went to the grocery store. He wanted to buy me a corsage, some flowers to wear, but as it was a grocery store, there wasn’t anything like that, so he bought me a bouquet for my desk instead.

One of the things I said during the ceremony was marriage isn’t a commitment you make just once. Rather marriage allows you the opportunity to choose that person again and again. This can happen in moments of joy, such as on your wedding day, looking at your partner and feeling overwhelmed by love, knowing this is your person and you are hers, and choosing to commit publicly and legally to your partnership. This choice also happens in some of the darkest moments, when things are hard. Over the course of a long marriage, there are many opportunities to choose. You commit yourself to this person over and over again.

In this month’s issue of Sun Magazine they shared a beautiful poem, A Marriage by Michael Blumenthal, that feels especially true to me.

You are holding up a ceiling
with both arms. It is very heavy,
but you must hold it up, or else
it will fall down on you. Your arms
are tired, terribly tired,
and, as the day goes on, it feels
as if either your arms or the ceiling
will soon collapse.

But then,
unexpectedly,
something wonderful happens:
Someone,
a man or a woman,
walks into the room
and holds their arms up
to the ceiling beside you.

So you finally get
to take down your arms.
You feel the relief of respite,
the blood flowing back
to your fingers and arms.
And when your partner’s arms tire,
you hold up your own
to relieve him again.

And it can go on like this
for many years
without the house falling.

Gratitude Friday

augustwas

1. The end of August. Now that I’m back at work, I’m okay with summer being over, with things cooling down. The end of any month also means a pay day. This month was sometimes too hard, too much, but there were also moments where I sat in the backyard with the dogs, the grass under my feet, listening to the kids playing in the street and drinking a cool glass of clean water.

2. Good friends getting married. I’m officiating the wedding. It’s superficial, but I’m also so grateful I was able to find something to wear that I feel okay about.

wedding

3. An insulated house. For 15 years, our house had no insulation in the exterior walls. They just didn’t build them with it in the early 60s in Colorado. It cost big money and took a lot of effort on our part (which still isn’t over) and was a bit of a mess, but it’s done now. So far we’ve noticed that the house retains its temperature (rather than adjusting to what’s outside) and it’s quieter inside. That plus cheaper electric and gas bills will make it all worth it.

4. A three or four day weekend. I took today to get some stuff done for the wedding, and because I’d worked both really early and really late other days this week. The wedding is tomorrow and the other two days I have left away from work, I’m going to be as lazy as I can.

5. Ringo and Sam. They are settling in to being back home, are getting along so much better than they were that one horrible week at the beach. A few days ago, they were out eating stuffed frozen Kongs together, and today when I got home and let them out, they played and played.

samhikingprisma kongs whatnowmom ringorainbow

Bonus joy: Ringo asleep on my feet as I write this, finding shoes to wear with my dress the first place I looked, painted toenails, my new car, hiring two new interns, my new therapist, being able to talk to Eric about things that are really hard, a new book, a new deck of tarot cards, two days ahead where I won’t have to do anything, some good tv and movies on their way, meditating, sleeping in, clean sheets, soaking in the tub, lunch plans with good friends.