What we do here:

Work on our stuff. Dissolve stuck. Play. Experiment. Rewrite patterns. We take sometimes-heavy things* and we make them more fun, playful, manageable.

I also write about my conversations with walls and monsters, and what it's like to work on a pirate ship. Good times.

* Sometimes-heavy things include: mindfulness and presence, pain and trauma, business-growing, that problematic word which rhymes with flaweductivity



very personal ads

I write a Very Personal Ad (also known as a Vision of Possibility & Anticipation) each week to practice wanting, listening, getting clear on my desires

the point isn’t getting my wish (though cool things have emerged from wishing), it’s learning about my relationship with wanting, accessing the qualities

wanting can be hard, it is easy to feel conflicted about it, and the reasons for that make this a surprisingly subversive practice…

this is the 327th consecutive week of wishing, come play!

eighteen weeks

eighteen weeks ago I made a wish called Shed
a double-meaning wish about
deep releasing and intentional space

since then I left utah and returned to my house in portland
emptied my home
let my sweet beautiful lover go
(because he needs to go, not because either of us wants this)

and now I am slowly preparing myself to move into
136 square feet of space
so basically, hahaha, yes, okay, a shed

did not see that coming

the wish went deep

as so many wishes do
deeper than I was able to conceive of when I wished it
and there is probably more about sheds and shedding that I don’t know about yet
and it will be funny later
when I get to it

I have shed, and I have a shed

I have shed
tears and skins and layers and belongings and parts of me
that are no longer congruent with how I want to live

I have let go and let go, into the emptying and into the Less

and now I am allowing an intentionally small
– and unintentionally shed-like —
container of delicious space to emerge
so that it may hold me in love during the next piece of this adventure

and now is the time

it is time for the next wish-of-double-meanings
I am a little scared of double-meaning wishes now
but I am also ready

shiva (i)

shiva is the beautiful form that the jewish tradition has given us
to deal with grief-sorrow-anguish-mourning

it’s no secret that I feel conflicted about many aspects of the
tribe I was born into
but judaism does some things very well
and thoughtful compassionate ritual is one of them

shiva comes from the word SEVEN
and when you lose someone, there are seven days put aside for
you, the person in a state of loss,
for doing absolutely nothing
but to be in the grief of the grief of the grief of it

you sit on the floor and you have no obligations

your friends come and they feed you
and hug you if you want to be hugged

they do not talk to you about your loss
or about how you feel
unless you bring it up first
they just give you safety and make sure
you are not alone
and that you are being nourished and cared for

it is a very good system

only when I saw how other people do it
with the awkwardness and no one knowing what to say and then
somehow almost compulsively saying all the least-helpful things

or how people in grief throw themselves into work
without making time/space for sitting with the void

then I understood what a blessing it is to have shiva
and not just the shiva but all the rituals and forms around it
there are the first seven days, which are part of the first thirty
which are part of the first year

ritual holds you the whole way
back to wholeness

shiva (ii)

shiva is the god-power of destruction
shiva is the force that sweeps through and just takes shit apart
generally right when it needs to be taken apart

the shiva force isn’t about violence
it’s about breaking things down into their components
so they can take new forms

making room for the new
which can’t grow until the old structures
have been razed

I prefer to think of it as Deconstruction
rather than Destruction
but either way, everything ends
and sometimes, or at least so I like to think,
the shiva essence makes this happen faster
more elegantly
with meaning

shiva is also a dancer

and not just any dancer but shiva nataraj, king of the dance
shiva dances-in the change (yes, that is the verb I want)
shaking things up
shaking things off
shaking things out

trust the dance

I used to teach a form of this dance
but I had to stop (because everything ends but not just because of that)
really because the thing I loved most about the form was the freedom to play
the open-source essence of it
and when that changed, unexpectedly, from where I stood,
so did my relationship with teaching

it was painful at the time
to lose my identity as a teacher
and as a student
and as someone who had been obsessed with this methodology,
who made it her life and career for a decade

but I trusted the true shiva essence of it all
and saw that if my life seemed to be coming apart
it was because something new and better was being danced-into-being

so I said thank you
for the treasure I couldn’t see yet

I was right

my wish this week has to do with both kinds of shiva

I am going through big tumultuous transition right now
with the end of my time in my beautiful home
where I have spent the past seven years

the end of ten years living with my wonderful housemate

the end of these almost unbearably sweet
fourteen months of joy and passion and gladness
with my beautiful lover who left today

I want shiva

I want to mark these endings and passages
the way I would the death of a loved one

sitting on the floor
crying as much as I need to cry
being held and fed and comforted

and I want to remember that shiva the dancer-destroyer
who brings about upheaval and deconstruction
can dance in changes with grace and power

and I can say thank you for that

I want to say thank you

I want to say thank you for
the treasure
I have already received and

the treasure that has yet to be revealed to me
but is absolutely here in all of this even when I can’t see it

I know it is here, and I know this from experience but
also because incoming-me told me so once
when I lost my mentor and all the barns burned at once

she said, my love, this is all treasure
because from now on you get nothing but treasure in this life
so if it doesn’t look like treasure,
get curious and look with wiser more loving eyes

letting go, with love

I want to find the treasure in releasing
I want to release the treasure in finding
I want to feel the treasure in grieving
I want to grieve the treasure of feeling

all of this and more

what do I know about this wish?

I am definitely feeling the strong pull to not do this
even as I am wishing it

I want so much to hurl myself into work and plans
into dance and working out
and scrubbing things clean

anything but sitting with the void
of my-lover-is-gone
and soon-my-home-is-not-my-home

anything but walking past the dining room chair
where he likes to sit and work
and where I pause to kiss the back of his neck
the way he takes my hand and kisses my palm
and presses it to his heart

anything but thinking about that please

and yet, there must be treasure in this too

for example, it is treasure that I don’t have to stay in this space
filled as it is with too much saturated memory

and it is treasure to remember being treasured
and it is treasure to know that the next time we see each other
if/when if/when if/when if/when
I will be both infinitely more free
and infinitely more grounded
(yes, yes, bird and tree)
than before

and so we will be new
either way everything is new again

what am I noticing about my wish?

same as last week’s, actually: this is also a wish about freedom
and about presence

this is a wish about I AM HERE, and a wish about
healing and about process
peaceful intentional process
meeting myself where I am
with as much love and legitimacy as I can muster
filling up on LIFE and beautiful ALIVENESS
coming back to the fullness of my thank-you heart
even — especially — in times of hard

may it be so!


turquoise blanket, sunlight hitting stone, the word exit, my lover-who-is-leaving texts “kissing you sweetly”, wiping tears away with a white flannel square, dark circles under my eyes, copper bell, the sun decal that is now a moon and looks like half a heart, I am here

superpower of yes to my yes, no to my no.

October - Be Bold More last month was stand in my strength more, and october (on the Fluent Self calendar) is be bold more

with the superpower of yes to my yes, no to my no

nothing is more important than this

I said last week: this is how I want to live in all things
even when it scares me
and I stand by this

last week’s wishes

I wished a wish called these are my roots

it was a very powerful wish
and roots were exactly what was needed most
in this week of emotion and upheaval
as was the realization that so many of you also care about
the many ways that The Game Is Rigged
and so we are going to have to do something about that
subvert the game together
and I feel strongly about how important this is
and how vitally necessary it is to be well-rooted to do that good work

thank you, process of writing about wishes, and thank you, me who asked

invitation: come play with me…

you are invited to share many !!!!!! about what is here,
or share anything sparked for you while reading

deposit wishes, gwishes, superpowers, qualities, ingredients, intel, possibly in code

safe space for creative exploration asks us to let go of care-taking and advice-giving

wishes are never late because whenever you wish is the right time for wishing

here’s how we meet each other’s wishes: oh, wow what beautiful wishes

love-breath chicken

Friday chicken

Reflecting on both the hard and the good in the week that was…

Hello, Friday: we are here.

{a breath for being here when we get here}

Thank you, week!

This is the 376th week in a row we are chickening here together….

or “checking in”, if you prefer to enunciate.

What worked this week?

Getting close to the ground.

Even if I didn’t want to close my eyes. Just getting on the floor and breathing, looking at my space (external and internal) from a quieter perspective.

Next time I might…

Remember the mechanics of grief and exhaustion

I know how these work, maybe even too well. But sometimes I forget.

Right now, for example, the number of times I have left my bedroom for the living room to retrieve my laptop to write this but returned empty-handed (because I forgot what the mission was) is up to five.

I would like to remember that this is how it works, and this is normal, so I can be wonderfully patient and compassionate with myself, instead of momentarily wondering if I’ve lost my mind.

My mind is right here. It’s just processing bigger things. And that’s legitimate. You’re doing great, mind. This is just a thing that is perfectly understandable, even in the moments I can’t remember why.

Upcoming biopic if it were based on this week…

Trust Equally In The Wisdom Of Everything Ends And Everything Is New Again

If you feel drawn to comment on aspects of my week, I will take love, hearts, breaths, pebbles — I do not need advice or cheering up, though presence and sweetness are always welcome

8 breaths for the hard, challenging and mysterious.

  1. My sweet beautiful lover and I heard-and-received the understanding that we need to part ways even though we don’t want to be apart. We know this is right, and also we are both heartbroken and aching and distraught over this. A breath for every moment we have been given to love each other: treasure.
  2. The pain of this is absolutely agonizing. A breath for breathing into this.
  3. Nothing has ever hurt even remotely like this, and life has already given me a hell of a training in endings and loss and all forms of Everything Ends, and nothing has hurt like this. I suddenly found myself sitting on the kitchen floor, not sure how I got there, one hand pushing against the wall, hyperventilating from something that is beyond tears. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t breathe, and I didn’t even remember how to be scared about can’t-breathe. For a moment, my mind flashed a picture of me in an ambulance. And then I realized this was Wise-Me was trying to get through to me by sparking a memory of a short story by Etgar Keret. It’s a very short story, just a paragraph, I probably haven’t read it in ten years, but it’s about how when you are in the throes of an asthma attack, each word has meaning: “I love you” or “ambulance”; choose wisely. Yes, I just looked it up. Here is the whole story, well-translated by Miriam Shlesinger:

    When you have an asthma attack, you can’t breathe. When you can’t breathe, you can hardly talk. To make a sentence all you get is the air in your lungs. Which isn’t much. Three to six words, if that. You learn the value of words. You rummage through the jumble in your head. Choose the crucial ones–those cost you, too. Let healthy people toss out whatever comes to mind, the way you throw out the garbage. When an asthmatic says “I love you,” and when an asthmatic says “I love you madly,” there’s a difference. The difference of a word. A word’s a lot. It could be “stop,” or “inhaler.” It could be “ambulance.”

    A breath of breath — for me who hurt so much she forgot how to breathe, and then remembered through the power of words.

  4. Usually I fall asleep moments after my head comes to rest on my lover’s chest, his fingers tangled in my hair: I feel him kiss my forehead and then it’s morning. But the night we knew, I found myself awake in his arms all night, listening to him breathe, not remembering how to sleep. A breath for me.
  5. There is nothing more I want to say about the hard of this week, so here is a pebble. A breath for pebbles and I am here.
  6. Another pebble, another breath.
  7. Again. A breath.
  8. Inhale, exhale. May all misunderstandings and distortions, internal and external, dissolve in love if not in laughter. Trust-more love-more release-more receive-more. Goodbye (and thank you), mysteries and hard moments of this week.

8 breaths for the good, reassuring, delight-filled.

  1. I have known this was coming, there was no surprise in it. Exactly one week before it happened, I wrote in the secret s-word society that I knew he would be exiting my life soon, because everything that is no longer congruent has been easing its way out of my life — it is, after all, the Year of Easing & Releasing, and I knew this was next. I wrote that one day very soon he would come to me and say, “Sweet girl, I love you so much and I don’t want to leave you, and I need to go”, and I would say, “I know, it’s time”, and we would cry, and that is what happened. And I’m glad it was that and not other ways of exiting, for example, he could have exited in a heart attack from working sixteen hour days seven days a week in high-stress conditions, or in a car wreck brought on by stress and fatigue. A breath for the treasure in not being surprised, because I don’t like that kind of surprise. And a breath of gratitude that I didn’t need to say what I was ready to say — hey my love my love my love I can’t have this in my life anymore — because knowing it was hard enough.
  2. The beautiful boy and I fit more pure unfiltered love, sweetness, passion, joy, intensity, adoration, play, wild adventure and genuine happiness into these last fourteen months than other people get in decades or lifetimes. Even as it hurts (so much!), I have endless appreciation and gratitude for all the gifts of this connection and this love, and I am not someone who believes in the myth of the value of longevity that our culture pushes on us. Everything has the potential to have a just-right healthy vibrant lifespan, and I plan to always choose quality over quantity in all things. A breath for the wisdom of this, and my full heart.
  3. I have experienced breakups before that fall into the category of “mutual”, but invariably one person is more ready for the ending. While I don’t wish this pain on anyone, there is a certain comfort in knowing that we are both equally torn up about this, in the same turbulent experience at the same time. We have to trust truth, this is what is indicated, and also it hurts like hell. A breath for the odd little funny grace of not being alone in grief.
  4. I’m going to be okay. If life has taught me anything, it’s that stones come and go, but the water is always there. I can scream and cry and beg DON’T LEAVE ME STONE I LOVE YOU STONE COME BACK TO ME STONE, but the purpose of a stone is not to stay forever, it’s to jostle me from my stuck places and lovingly nudge me back into the stream of aliveness. Flow is the answer. Stagnation is not. Thank you, stone. Thank you, river. A breath for trusting life.
  5. I had a beautiful time at Waltz Brunch, dancing for hours with people I enjoy and cherish, leading and following, feeling at home in my community. This felt especially important this week, with so many shootings in Portland and the city feeling dangerous and unwelcoming to me, it was good to have a place that felt like ahhhhh this is where I belong. I especially enjoy when there are new women in the lesson and they see a woman leading and realize this is a thing, and it’s possible, and they get so excited and happy. A breath of yes and thank you.
  6. Even this unbearable sadness has joy and beauty in it, because the reason I am sad is that of course I don’t want to say goodbye to the intense passion and our magical pull and the deep wells of sweetness, our perfect-fit embrace. The way he sings to me in the car, or how he writes I love you on the small of my back with his finger when he thinks I’m asleep, as if my back can’t read. A love-breath.
  7. My lover was supposed to leave today but I asked him to stay the weekend, partly so we could have time for goodbye, but partly because he doesn’t know what weekends are, and I would like him to experience just once what a human weekend in Portland feels like, with sleeping in and walking in the park and brunch and restfulness. So we are doing that. A breath of thank you.
  8. Thankfulness. Everything is okay and so much is good. Nothing is wrong, even when I want to believe it is. Now is not then. All Timing Is Right Timing. Thank you for this grand adventure. A full breath of deep appreciation in my thank-you heart.

Sparklepoints, superpowers, salve, fake band of the week!

Operations completed and forward movement!

Despite being overwhelmed by heartache, I was able to channel the qualities, superpower and theme for the 2016 calendar and handed it over to Richard for design magic! Hard to believe this is already the fifth year we make a calendar!

Also making progress — like a Fairground Stripper! — on initial preparations for the Sweet Honey ops and Operation Shed Shed Shed, and decided to put another mission on hold until spring, and that feels good. Thank you, fractal flowers.

I now bestow upon myself a quintillion sparklepoints, and you are welcome to do the same for you.

Or if you don’t do numbers (even fake ones), an endless cascading fountaining abundance of sparklepoints

Superpowers I had this week…

The superpower of really feeling the difference between 5% yes and 120% yes, and the power of graceful exits, both of which I used on The Facebin and a project that wasn’t feeling joyful.

Powers I want.

I want the superpower of Deep Beautiful Trust In All Is Well.

The Salve of Deep Beautiful Trust In All Is Well

These invisible salves are distributed here by way of internet magic. Help yourself! Take it in a bath, as tea, a cocktail, whatever works for you. Not only is there enough salve, there are also enough ways to receive it.

This is a softening salve. I start with my feet, and as I breathe and rub little circles in the soles of my feet, I feel into forgotten truth.

I feel the pulsing hum of life and the the vibrating jewel of the center of the sole of the foot. I feel the way my foot changes as I imagine I can breathe through it.

I feel the earthiness of earth and the support of the floor.

I feel so much, because I have let things soften, and I have let things soften because I have remembered, maybe not always consciously but somewhere deep inside of me, that I am okay and the ground is okay, and stumbling is okay, and hiding is okay and waiting is okay and striding forth is okay, and whatever I choose, I am good.

Playing live at the meme beach house — the Fake Band of the Week!

My brother and I make up bands, which are all just one guy. The Meme Beach House is the venue.


This week’s band is :

Received Like This

Their latest album is How Very Peculiar, and, of course, it’s just one guy.

Photo taken just for us in Lubbock, TX by Jesse — thank you!

Quick announcements!

While clearing out the house, I discovered a hidden stash of the gorgeous Stone Skipping cards! $22 for an extremely magical deck of cards plus shipping, or for $30 (plus shipping) we’ll add a cheery red Playground mug, since I found some more of those too! Tell the First Mate if you’re interested.

How was your week?

Come play in the comments. Share something from your week, take a breath, or just say hi! No rules, my format doesn’t have to be yours, we’ve been doing this every week for years now and there still isn’t a right way.

Everyone belongs. We let people have their own experience. We’re supportive and welcoming. We lovingly refrain from giving advice.

And of course it’s always okay to comment under a made-up name, whether for play and delight, or in the interest of Safety First.

Wishing you a glorrrrrrrrrrrrious day, a restful weekend and a happy week to come.

Shabbat shalom.

It’s fine if it’s not Friday anymore. There’s complete chicken amnesty — jump in whenever you like. Blowing kisses to the Beloved Lurkers too!