What's in the gallery?

We dissolve stuck and rewrite patterns. We apply radical playfulness to life (when we feel like it!), embarking on internal adventures (credo of Safety First). We have a fake band called Solved By Cake. We build invisible sanctuaries, invent words and worlds, breathe awe and wonder.

We are not impressed by monsters. Except when we are. We explore the connections between internal territories and surrounding environment to learn what marvelously supportive delicious space feels like, and how to take exquisite care of ourselves. We transform things.* We glow wild.**

* For example: Desire, fear, worry, pain-and-trauma, boundaries, that problematic word which rhymes with flaweductivity.

** Fair warning: Self-fluency has been known to lead to extremely subversive behavior, including treasuring yourself unconditionally, unapologetically taking up space, experiencing outrageously improbable levels of self-acceptance, and general rejoicing in aliveness.

 

Add Serendipity.

Door of Serendipity

April.

I left Utah for California the morning of April 1st,
driving from St George to Los Angeles,
thank you, month of Serendipity.

Though of course when past-me named this month,
she did not know it would coincide perfectly with
a two week unplanned road trip,
but hey, she still knew just what I need to be able to do this;
a sense of adventure combined with the reminder that the unexpected and unanticipated
can also feel playful and even auspicious,
the unknown is just the as-yet-undiscovered….

(and this new thing need not be as uncomfortable as I fear)
(no, it is just new)
(to me)
(I can not know what is next)
(and still be okay)
(I am okay)

These are the questions.

  • What do I know about Serendipity?
  • What is the purpose of Operation TFB? [TFB = Total Fucking Badass]
  • What is, has been, or can be Beautifully Simple and Beautifully Supported?
  • What about some Good Surprises?
  • And: what needs to burn?

What do I know about Serendipity?

To be able to experience the unexpected/unanticipated
as a form of adventure and play,
this is FREEDOM,
and I like this perspective when I remember it….

ah yes, I am being redirected,
and approaching all this with lightness is also an option,
and sure, okay, none of this is even close to
what I thought I’d be doing at forty, or at all,
but oh look at all this newness
look at what is open and possible

Operation TFB.

I have been a wanderer for three hundred and fifty days now,
the time has come to make my way slowly back up the coast,
(where I will still be wandering, but in a new location),
because I will be learning what it means to be a Total Fucking Badass,
how to live and embody this in entirely new forms.

What were you doing in Utah, my friend wants to know,
and I don’t really have much of an answer but it includes:
+ motorcycle trips
+ shooting guns in the desert
+ punching things
+ pole dancing
+ writing
+ getting in fights with racists
+ setting things on fire

My friend points out that maybe I don’t need a secret op to consider myself a TFB,
because I might already be one….

With lightness.

This honestly had not even occurred to me,
but now I am thinking that
Operation Total Fucking Badass might be for
feeling what I already know, feeling who I already am,
embodying all this with even more fierceness
but also with greater lightness,
and without needing to qualify, defend, explain,
without need anyone else to understand.

I want to admire my own fire,
admire my own light,
cherish myself in each moment, each shape, each spark,
find myself magnificent,
even when tired and cranky and unsure,
I am an instrument of love and my superpower is
healing myself through remembering,
with lightness.

Beautifully.

Beautifully Simple has been my guiding principle for this trip,
is it beautifully simple? If not, let’s skip it.

Beautifully Supported was the superpower last April (month of Roots)
and Beautiful Surprises is the superpower of this April (month of Serendipity)

What is simple, surprising, supported and supportive?
What can be not only this way but beautifully this way?

Plans vs Not-Plans.

When I first embarked, I was way too caught up in logistics,
until Incoming Me said
hey listen up YOU DO NOT NEED A PLAN, plans are bullshit,
just follow the Next Indicated Step and see what feels yes after that.

This helped me exit logistics-mind, though yeah, it also
immediately became apparent that
while I may not need a plan per se,
I do need Really Clear Boundaries and good guiding principles,
it is up to me to be more aware of what I require to be functional,
and take steps to make sure those needs are met before everything falls apart.

And I need to prioritize [Rest & Replenish] above all else
because otherwise I will be too much of a mess
to feel what is yes or next, to understand
when I am being redirected to something new.

Realizations from the month of Serendipity.

Once I stopped fighting all the many things that were no,
and began to place my own state of quiet above all else,
road trip life became one ridiculously serendipitous experience after another.

Choosing a good breakfast over writing about Serendipity led me to a sweet cafe
where I sat outside and met another Portlander-in-exile,
we solved all the problems over a truly spectacular meal,
she told me about living in a sailboat, and a tiny room
above a bar in South Dakota,
we talked about tango and quilting and bunny therapy
(a thing that should exist if it doesn’t already)
and suddenly I felt re-inspired about my adventurous life on the road,
no longer sad and wistful and uprooted.

The sun came out and warmed us, I removed a layer and then another,
hanging my sweatshirt over the chair, she saw its labyrinth print and
clapped her hands and we shared
our GREAT EXCITEMENT AND JOY ABOUT LABYRINTHS
— there are people who feel wild intense passion about labyrinths
and then there is everyone else, and I wish to meet more people in the first category please
and this moment of joy with a stranger sent me off on a Labyrinth Pilgrimage up the coast,
visiting three labyrinths in one day…

Labyrinths.

The labyrinths told me about Freedom and Liberation,
Liberation and Deliberation,
Refining and Redefining.

The labryinths themselves are about liberation,
because they make you let go of story,
and they cannot be hurried,
our culture may value the shortest distance between two points
(walk that straight straight line)
but labyrinths are about serendipity, meandering and process,
you have to move away to move towards.

The labyrinth told me that I miss out on Magnificence
through hurrying and trying to do too much,
what about Do Less and Choose Ease,
what about fewer projects and less everything, and then you will see
how magnificent you are and what is possible in the world and your world.

You are a jewel, this is what the labyrinth said,
and you need a better setting,
you are a jewel and you glow,
your spine is made of jewels,
your pelvis a crown of jewels,
so give yourself light and quiet and water and love,
give yourself a new setting for optimal glow.

Magnificence.

The labyrinths brought me to Operation Magnificence which immediately turned into
Operation Enhanced Magnificence Awareness,
because of course I am already magnificent beyond measure,
I just forget, and walking a labyrinth is a good way to remember:

Everything holds magnificence if I pause to notice, the stones and the trees and
even the noise of the city that is no for me,
how magnificent it all is.

I pushed a door whose sign said pull, I was so tired,
how magnificent that I went with the feel of the door over the sign,
I exchanged waves and secret smiles with a toddler, sharing {Magnificence!}
in the form of Aliveness and Delight.

I felt achingly sad about the faraway cowboy and being forgotten, but Wild Me,
Wild Me of Boundaries and Fiery and Better Settings,
she said, oh honey YOU are magnificent,
cultivate your own magnificence and act like you are GLOW POWER CENTRAL
because you are
and let go of all forms of unappreciated,
go be a jewel
go-be-now.

Water.

The labyrinths told me that I need to be in the water, and
yoga told me that I am a BODY OF WATER.

I am a body of water! Know what my body type is? Body of water!

If I am a body of water, and many things are waves
— sound, breath, emotion —
then of course my internal waters rage when I am
trying to write in the company of eardrum-blasting leaf blowers and hedge trimmers.

If I am a body of water, I can take better care of myself with
boundaries, baths, salt, the practice of RGW (Replenishing Glass of Water!),
and of course being more conscious about what I put in my waters.

I want to tend to my waves, my beautiful cursive calligraphy waves and spirals,
waves of heart love, waves of shape and movement in my body and in dance,
the winding and unwinding of the labyrinth, the roundness of sound,
suspended in hammocks, soaking in hot pools,
breathing love
back in the water.

Back to the water.

Back to the water where I return to my own waves, my own frequency.

The salt-heavy water of the float tank told me how I need to cherish myself,
and in order to do this,
to be-and-become the secret agent of Self-Cherishing,
I need to spend way more time in my body instead of merely with my body…

Lusciousness asks me for time, ritual, intention, presence, effort…

The practice of Oh How Beautiful, Yes This Is Beautiful,
the superpower of seeing beauty and magnificence in the day to day of
this hard world, seeing it in my surroundings
even when I am not in gloriously beautiful Utah wilderness,
perceiving it in me with all my stories, pain, trauma,
this must be cultivated, over time,
thousands of times each day, remembering,
and then remembering again.

What would my yes be right now in this moment if I were already
a queen of self-treasuring?

Boundaries.

Bodies of water have boundaries, and
boundaries are the answer to all of my TFB (Total Fucking Badass) mysteries,
as well as all the mysteries surrounding Living In Serendipity.

Being a panther and a jewel and a ray of light,
these are all about beautifully glowing boundaries,
so clear and so alive,
these are my edges,
this is my space..

Being aware of my space and claiming it for me,
this is a new way of taking charge of boundaries,
this is the kind of epiphany that sounds so obvious when you say it,
but it is reverberating inside me in entirely new ways,
I can INHABIT this body and navigate space,
and this is a badass way to be,
in fact, just my passion about this is a badass way to be,
no matter what happens with any of my experiments.

Wild me has swagger, she’s powerful and also unconcerned,
she walks the world like PART THE SEAS FOR MY MAGNIFICENCE,
and she is also kind and warm and loving and all the things
I have been afraid of losing if I become fierce and fearless about
being the unapologetic guardian of my space and headspace.

Serendipitous Everything.

I tried to write this piece last night but my desire to do the
writing part of writing was zero,
and, as you know, I believe that trusting the not-writing is maybe even the
most important part of writing,
so I took myself to dinner instead
and unexpectedly made a new friend,
and she and I are going to shoot guns and have adventures,
and float in water, like a peaceful Thelma and Louise?

All timing right timing.

Boundaries, again.

Last week I was out with my friend K who is a BEAUTIFUL JEWEL,
and my model for the superpower of Perceiving Your Own Magnificence,
we were on a mission to do something peaceful and grounding,
and there we met a woman who wanted to dump her whole life story on us,
with all the weight of the stories inside of her stories, the energy in her energy,
and afterwards I felt exhausted and didn’t know why.

I talked it over with slightly future me who is already a Total Fucking Badass
and I want to share this transmission from her with you, in case it is useful:

Oh honey, I know it is not fun seeing all the ways that your boundaries are not working, and at the same time it really is useful intel. Now we don’t have to repeat this type of interaction.

Next time you will say WORK EMERGENCY GOTTA GO, next time you will remember that your sense of peacefulness is more important than being polite and letting someone eat your energy with their stories.

You will cut ties sooner. You will state your needs, eventually with grace and ease, but in the meantime you need to protect your energy. Put way less value on being perceived as “nice”, “friendly”, “accommodating”. You already do this with men on the street, and today we learned that you don’t yet know how to do this with [women who are being nice to you].

Guess what? Your headspace matters just as much as your physical space. Practice buffer phrases. Carry headphones. Do WHATEVER IT TAKES to exit an interaction that depletes you. You need to get your clarity and quiet back, to reclaim them IN THAT MOMENT.

Call it a family emergency — it is after all an actual emergency in your family of selves. The only thing that matters here is Safety First Boundaries First.

Love.

Me: I don’t want to work on any of my projects.
Wild Me: It’s scary, writing what you want to write, huh
Me: WHAT IF NO ONE LOVES ME EVER AGAIN
She: OR WHAT IF THEY LOVE YOU BETTER

Anything else I want to remember?

Replenishing is the first priority of a TFB,
because Well-Rested and Replenished is how you
a) access internal wisdom, and
b) remember to turn inward and access internal wisdom
instead of looking outward to external bullshit and the culture of (false) expertise,
thinking someone else or something else holds your answers.

My entire mission in life is self-treasuring, self-cherishing,
loving myself even more fiercely and wildly and intently and unconditionally,
being the channel of love, and LOVE JUST IS,
and a well-rested well-present me is how I connect to Source.

Back to love, again, again.

My body is an instrument of joy, and my work is to love
the ever-changing shape of my container
(my body, my body of water, my boundaries)
and the ever-changing shape of my life,
in all of its moments and changes and hurting,
and even when it is not delivering joy, I love it for being.

Serendipity is intimately connected to last month’s quality of Pleasure,
because Pleasure leads to PRESENCE and presence is how you notice
all the marvelous serendipities and the magnificence of it all.

And I can be patient with myself when this is hard because
we are exploring DEEP WILD SELF LOVE at entirely new levels,
while also living life on the road and sometimes, well,
sometimes I think my life is a mess but what does that even mean,
and if I stop judging it for being “messy”,
then oh wow, here we are.

Adding Serendipity to my compass.

A breath for each direction.

NORTH: Fierce Serendipity / Serendipitous Fierceness
NORTHEAST: Fearless and Serendipitous / The Serendipity that comes from Fearlessness
EAST: Powerful (awareness of) Serendipity / Serendipitous and Powerful
SOUTHEAST: Striking Serendipity / Serendipitous Striking
SOUTH: Grounded Serendipity / Serendipity is Grounding
SOUTHWEST: Wild Serendipity / Serendipitously Wild
WEST: Glowing Serendipity / Serendipity Glows
NORTHWEST: Delighting in Life’s Serendipities / Serendipitous Delighting In Life

What if I add Serendipity to everything,
what vast love and magnificence will I uncover,
what waves of wonder and mystery?

And there it is, my next step.

Invitation: come play with me…

You are invited to share this post and to share many !!!!!! about what is here,

Or share appreciation or anything sparked for you while reading…

You can also share how things have been going, check in, or deposit wishes, gwishes, superpowers, qualities, ingredients, possibly in code.

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

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.

Wishes and checking-in are never late because whenever you wish is the right time for wishing.

We remember that people vary and my process doesn’t have to be yours, and this is a good thing.

Here’s how we meet each other: with great kindness and appreciation and awe, whispering (and sometimes shouting) oh, wow what beautiful wishes!

37 Responses to Add Serendipity.

  1. Kathleen Jowitt
    Twitter: KathleenJowitt
    says:

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!

    <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

    Labyrinths! A better setting! Body of water!
    Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… Stationery Love at Jera’s Jamboree

  2. Carina Sophia says:

    “I want to…find myself magnificent”

    Find myself magnificent. Find that I am magnificent. Find magnifence for myself.

    !!!!! and <3 <3 <3 and thank you

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      Mmmmm next time someone says that someone is “trying to find themselves”, I will whisper MAGNIFICENT. They are *finding themselves magnificent*, that is so beautiful, thank you

  3. Leni says:

    So much love for this! I am PASSIONATE about labyrinths! Omg they are the best!

    Current themes:
    -so much gratitude, lots of support and kindness from everywhere, including thew most unexpected places.
    -Spring. when did this happen? i’m still astonished to note that it really is spring, and not just a thaw.
    -there are 5 planets retrograde and i have had to give up certain timelines. Plants v. Zombies continues to griend away
    -one of the most useful and helpful things since my husband died, is that long ago i proxied the estate planning and made it into a pirate’s map. This has allowed me to navigate (get it?) the scary waters with clarity and bravery, taking care of my Crew, guarding my Keep, and protecting the Loot. This is among the most valuable of all gifts I received from Havi, so thank you
    – i like watching new routines and new systems land. they are arriving slowly, most of them, but i feel sucha sense of possibility and a new aligning with my values and desires. there is so much less tobacco smoke in my house, there is almost no on-screen violence.
    -becoming my own companion, becoming more self-fluent. Connecting with future me Lotus, and resonating with what she wants.

  4. Kathleen Avins
    Twitter: spiralsongkat
    says:

    <3 ! <3 ! <3

    Stirring in Serendipity…

    Inviting Serendipity to flow into all the uncomfortable places, adding softness or sparkle as needed…

    Welcome, Serendipity.

  5. Karensu Light_of_Summer
    Twitter: light_of_summer
    says:

    <3 <3 <3 !!!

    Especially re

    What would my yes be right now in this moment if I were already
    a queen of self-treasuring?

    (I might try skipping that stone right away!) :)

    and

    WHAT IF THEY LOVE YOU BETTER? (!!!)

    Thank you and good wishes!

  6. Questing Lee says:

    “You are a jewel, this is what the labyrinth said,
    and you need a better setting,
    you are a jewel and you glow,…
    give yourself a new setting for optimal glow.”

    It Came to me – a new proxy, The Jewel Palace.

    The Dude and I have already consulted with a Jewelry Designer who assured us that the new jewels we need will fit in our existing setting. I have left a message for the Lapidary that she recommended who is expert in resetting vintage jewelry.

    In pretty much order are: The Jade Room, The Sapphire Room, The Setting, The Room of Sustaining Fire Rubies, Fixing and Polishing the Diamonds, Adding Platinum Accents, The Cloisonné Centerpiece, Polishing the Piece, Adding Softness and Warmth, The Pendant, and Adding the Glow – Housewarming Party.

    We already have a skilled weaver creating the Emerald and Rose Quartz Silk cloth, upon which the Jewel Palace rests.

    Thank you for the Awesome Proxy!

    And the Dude and I are the Renaissance Patrons commissioning the artists.

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      Mmmmm I LOVE this proxy and all the beautiful elements of it, what an exciting project and new identities, all that play and freedom, may it bring you so much joy and ease!

  7. Wrenna says:

    just love

  8. Madame von Spring says:

    *serendipity* It’s like I heard you whisper the word “tango,” and as a result was gifted with reading about your magnificence and TFB-ness. You go, woman and happy belated fiery and sending you hearts and !!!!!!

    (If you have more to say about tango in Portland, I’d love to hear as my heels will be valsing there this summer.)

    Thank you for this because I needed the reminder:”superpower of seeing beauty and magnificence in the day to day…perceiving it in me…” *big hug*

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      hey my love, take a look at portlanddancing.com and portlandtango.com for all the haps, I am always doing other dances but if I were in pdx with time/energy/funds for tango, I would definitely take classes with Elizabeth Wartluft, and with Glykeria Manis, I believe there is lots of good stuff happening at tango berretin in southeast, I’m just rarely in that part of the city. Also the wednesday night tango at norse hall is supposed to be the most inclusive/alt-tango, from what I hear, and there’s a west coast swing dance downstairs, some people go to both and switch back and forth. TANGO!

      • Madame von Spring says:

        Glykeria is in pdx???? We took some NYC tango classes together. *seredipity giggles gleefully again*

        Tango AND wcs, on the same night in the same venue… I love that idea.

        Thank you again…I’m remembering to look for magnificent fun when I had forgotte n how to.

  9. […] Havi published her April post and two ideas really stood out to me: […]

  10. Sue T says:

    Love this.

    Love labyrinths.

    I am positive there is such a thing as bunny therapy.

    Looking forward to Beautiful Surprises in Spring.

    Happy April to all!

  11. Max
    Twitter: maxdaniels
    says:

    BODY OF WATER ????????????

  12. Max
    Twitter: maxdaniels
    says:

    Ugh was trying to express myself visually not indicate utter bewilderment.

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      Yeah this set-up is the worst at reading images but I am translating this to mean [Body of Water What Wonderment Is This Joy Fluidity Splashing!] or something like that <3

  13. s. says:

    serendipity sounds so playful and juicy to me – i had to look it up in the dictionary though. my favourite thing is how the meaning keeps pace with the sound <3

    the good: found a new home, finally alone!! peace and quiet (though still messy…). further life improvement: riding my bike. there's even a vague tango rendezvous in the not so far future – i have not been dancing for more than a year [what?]

    the hard: the difference between the talk and the walk. or not necessarily the talk, but rather the theory / insight and the praxis. i don't want to be anybody's (= any man's) audience, but i still play along? – what unsovereign shit is this, as someone once said (wrote)? also: the fine line between not hating yourself for your quirks (neurosis) but also not giving up on outgrowing them. i am so ashamed of so many things, there is so much i need to let go of.

    thank you so much for offering beautiful words and images, deep water, deep breaths. and labyrinths <3 <3 <3

    i saw the most beautiful cherry tree today, overflowing with blossoms. i love spring!

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      Right? It is such a playful buoyant word in both sound and meaning, I have to smile every time I think of it. Yes to overflowing cherry blossoms!

  14. Kathleen Jowitt
    Twitter: KathleenJowitt
    says:

    Things:

    – people to laugh with
    – people to walk with
    – good people in my life generally
    – technology making things better (and yes, ten feet of stretchy cotton knit is technology) – it was a joy to watch
    – I am so much better than I was even a couple of weeks ago
    – my brother came off his bike and has broken a tooth and there was a lot of blood, but he is OK and his hashtags are as gratuitously expansive as ever
    Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… Fanfic policy

  15. Kathleen Avins
    Twitter: spiralsongkat
    says:

    Quick chicken…

    Hard: dealing with deadlines. I don’t like ’em.

    Good: New clients! New journal!

    What worked? Entry, and self-kindness.

    For the rest of April, I am wishing for serendipity + sweetness + spice. Cinnamon. Yes, that’s it. I am wishing for serendipitous cinnamon. I love it when I don’t quite know what a wish means — it can be so much fun finding out!

  16. ProudMama says:

    Ease, stretch, push, extend, to heal. Explore and admire. Shout. Love my voice, love myself, love my thoughts. Allow myself to feel again because feeling is safe.
    These are my actions. These are my wishes.

  17. Spike says:

    Every time I think I cannot love your words better —

    “Call it a family emergency — it is after all an actual emergency in your family of selves.”

    –I love them better.

  18. Chandler
    Twitter: AnagramPress
    says:

    This is wonderful, as always. I just returned from a month of solo road-trip wandering, and I’m finding my BTT (bullshit tolerance threshold) is now incredibly low. I like it low. It helps me be a boundary badass…pondering on ways of keeping this particular forcefield in place.

    Also, I wanted to place a pebble here for you: there is a beautiful labyrinth on Orcas Island in Washington. It’s in Eastsound, the little village there, and it’s right on the shore of the water. If it’s the right thing, and the time is right, may you two find one another!
    Chandler recently posted… Rereading the map

  19. Breandan says:

    Love it, was searching. Truthful self expression how can one not love it

  20. B says:

    where I’m at

    Survive

    I used to swim
    so not to drown
    too long I dug through the water
    a poor technique
    sheer power

    I willed myself on
    Shoulders aching
    I pulled and pulled
    Dragging my legs behind

    Then I began to drown
    I could no longer swim
    I knew not how

    The waves began to rise
    All I wanted to do was let go

    I felt my head drop beneath the waves
    The cold rush of the sea
    Felt inviting

    A moments longing
    A closeness felt
    A comfort amidst the pain

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