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.


the chicken that knows about an explosion of softness

Friday chicken

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

Hello, week: we are here.

{a breath for being here when we get here}

Thank you, week!

It is Sunday and this was a very intense week, and this is the 416th week in a row and I am glad we are chickening here together!

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

What’s been working?

Trusting that this moment is right, and if the most notable thing about a moment is the strong intel that things are wrong, then that is the rightness of the moment, in revealing to me what needs to change, and in giving me an opportunity to meet myself with compassion.

I might try…

Eight slow breaths, slow it down, slow it down, slow it down, slow it down some more. And I don’t mean slowing down my breath, my breath can be whatever it wants or needs to be, I mean allowing my breath to slow me.

This always works or at the very least helps me find the next step, it is always Adrianna’s first choice, and still I forget. So this is a remembering-seed, and also a celebration of all the times I did do this, next time let’s do it sooner if we can.

Naming the days.

I name each day the night before and I love how names change things and also how they become incantations.

This week was (still) the week of doors into harmony and these were the days.

Steady flow and steady glow. Access Internal Resonance. Celebrate radiance. Surprise Good News to the Tenth Power. Effortlessly lucky. Change the energy. Wild magic: It’s on!

Upcoming biopic if it were based on this week…

Look Out, World. Or At Least: Look Out, Internal World. Alternate title: A Force To Be Reckoned With.

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. This week was intense. Out in the world and inside in my world, which is where my focus was, but I could feel it all. Let’s talk about internal intensity though. Like those images of funnel cloud storms, except I was the storm cycling through my internal landscape. It wasn’t bad. It was powerful and intense, and powerful intense things are what they are. They take over and they destroy some things. Sure, mostly things that needed uprooting. I have zero regrets or sadness about this, I am just still in the intensity of it, and it is quite the experience. A breath for breathing through, in my power.
  2. Incoming me is blessedly free of many of my sensitivities (for example, she doesn’t freak out during fireworks) but she has other ones, new ones, that I hadn’t even considered. This is taking some getting used to. She doesn’t like anything that has been stored in plastic, not even nuts from the bulk bins at the co-op, she can taste the plastic. A breath for being tender and patient with myself and my selves, and trusting that this will play out or I will get used to it or I will get over it, and trust trust trust in all is well, and all intel is useful.
  3. The Cowboy Paradox — this is shorthand for something Pam Houston said, about her taciturn indecisive beautiful faraway cowboy, not mine, that I half-agree with but see very differently, but anyway the idea is: getting the thing you dearly longed for two weeks after you stopped wanting it. This happened over and over this week, in every area of my life, in such obvious and sometimes ludicrous ways that it turned into a sort of running joke. Like watching the movie of my life with the understanding that yes, this apparently is supposed to be a comedy. A breath for the audience cracking up in unison.
  4. I poured out heart-and-soul in a letter and got an actual literal form letter in response. This is also part of the comedy of this week, and it’s probably better that I didn’t get the thing I thought I wanted, given that the Cowboy Paradox is the theme of my life right now. A breath for letting go of a dream.
  5. The above was not the only example of endless beacons of no, where everything said no to me this week, and it all turned out to be useful, but there is so much deprogramming involved in understanding that people-and-situations saying no to you is treasure. A breath for self-kindness and patience.
  6. I followed a hunch and found an actual place that I want to live, after having been on the search for this exact type of [yes this feels like it could be a home for me] since December, and someone else had applied for it the day before, so it’s probably not going to happen. So yes, all timing is right timing, and desires don’t need to be more than clues and indications of direction, and I am okay. And also I am having a sad. All of this can co-exist at once. A breath for my sweet heart, and for past me of the years of wandering.
  7. The world is such an angry, hurting, stressful, reactive and scary place right now, and it can be difficult to find our place in it. Of course standing gracefully in truth and power is of vital importance, and we have to speak up for the things that matter. For example, this should go without saying but it doesn’t so let’s say it: BLACK LIVES MATTER. And simultaneously I can only be in ally/activist mode when I am highly functioning, and I am only highly functioning when practicing [safety first beautiful boundaries preserve clarity], and sometimes this can feel like a conundrum. A conundrum of someone who has the magic beans to take the time to think this through because I am not being attacked, intimidated and oppressed based on my appearance or identity. In the meantime, too much input gets me easily undone, and so the mission is to maintain clear headspace. A breath for glowing while I wait for next steps to be made clear, for understanding that waiting is sanctuary and treasure too, and doing everything I can to be a clear conduit, while not neglecting my commitment to be a beacon of truth force, let’s all use our powers for good to the best of our abilities, amen.
  8. Inhale, exhale. May all misunderstandings and distortions, internal and external, dissolve in love if not in laughter. May peacefulness prevail. 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 went into a chrysalis, which is like a private rally where I retreat for three days and three nights for the express purpose of integrating an incoming, and my only project is finding out what needs to happen to support this process of emerging/becoming. I do this very rarely because it is SO UNBELIEVABLY INTENSE, and also because it requires seclusion in a hotel which the monsters deem expensive and wildly extravagant. And the whole time they whisper about how it isn’t working and what a waste of resources, and of course it does work, and then it’s terrifying and amazing (yes, there is a word for this already: Awe) because then I am a channel of wisdom and clarity, a funnel cloud of deliberate movement, in my power and witchy grace, at my most clear resonance, and it is big wild magic and also everything is changing. This is also kind of a summing up of why this week was hard but everything that has emerged from this has been gorgeous and sweet. A breath of gratitude.
  2. DECISIVENESS. That is Adrianna’s superpower, one of many. And now, thanks to chrysalis, Adrianna has landed and so she just tells me what to do and I do it.
    After all these months of trying to figure out where I want to live, and how, what to do with all my stuff in the storage room, and what needs to happen with the secret studio, and what do I do about current problematic situations X and Y, and so on, she just knows. And she tells me. We emptied and transformed the storage room. She told me exactly which three buildings she is willing to live in and when. She told me which trips to plan and which to cancel. She found me the world’s easiest exit from [thing that wasn’t working]. She is so clear and so aware of her yes and her no, and we are in love with being together, and everything is easy with her. A breath for all of this .
  3. I heard the melody. I received the clues. Everything was laid out for me perfectly. There was even really good wine. A breath of deep gratitude.
  4. I know what I want, I know how to take care of myself, I am blessed with magic beans in so many forms, and all is well. A breath.
  5. Still flowing with illusory plans being illusory. I can work with this. A breath for not at all falling apart even in the face of uprooting.
  6. Letting go of everything that doesn’t support sanctuary, inside and out. A breath for this beautiful ease of clarity.
  7. I said this last week and I will say it again: I AM A SPECIAL OCCASION. A breath for what it means to understand this, Adrianna says this is a first step, for me, to understanding what freedom is, since she thinks I don’t get how freedom works in a very fundamental way. A breath of jubilation for the transgressive work of self-treasuring!
  8. Thankfulness. Treasure in the form of outrageous bus luck, being in the right place at the right time (for others and for myself), delicious food made for me with so much love. Such grace and such good fortune, each day this week was a rewriting of past trauma. 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.

Superpowers I had this week…

Last week I asked for the powers of Gleefully Following My Joy and Doing Everything With A Different Attitude Which Makes It New And Fabulous. What beautiful wishes, and all received.

I also had the powers of knowing exactly where to go and when, and oh wow did last week’s salve of Clues Everywhere shake things up!

Powers I want.

More of the same please and also the powers of wild magic, freedom in all things, and what if there is enough and more of everything I need.

The Salve of What If There Is Enough And More Of Everything I Need.

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, like last week’s salve, is an awareness salve because it is about new seeing, new relationship with desires. This salve doesn’t need to deliver Abundance and Plenty and sweet opportunity, because they just are, this salve doesn’t even need to open the right doors to these things. This salve shifts perspective, and slows things beautifully (like breath) and seems to speed other things, so that you see what is miraculous and already coming towards you.

Side effects include deep full-belly laughter, marvelous surprises, a desire to share in any good fortune, and warmly smiling/twinkling at your secret allies in life

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 from Richard who took one look at the secret basement studio that Adrianna had just destroyed, blankets and cushions everywhere, and said, “it looks like there was a wonderful explosion of softness here”. Yes.

Explosions of Softness

Their latest album is I Have A Weird Soft Spot For This, and this band is just one guy.

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

Announcement time….

More to come soon, but I left the monster manual in the place that used to be the the shop. So if you missed the closing of the shop, there is still something beautiful for you!

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!

30 Responses to the chicken that knows about an explosion of softness

  1. Scout says:

    Oh no, I just had so much resonance on “I am a special occasion” and I am terrified and excited for this being my next story arc. A breath for truth and safety first. :x

  2. Magic says:

    “new seeing” reminded me of a song by Brooke Waggoner called ‘Fresh Pair of Eyes’ and she sings of how she wants to be seen with a fresh pair of eyes. One of the things I love about it is it’s a break from the ‘do more, be more’ mentality and leaning more toward ‘just look at me differently’.

    My toy chest upheaval is still occurring and it’s Hard. My mother has been diagnosed with cancer in ‘multiple anatomical locations’ and in just three weeks went from (unexpected) diagnosis to chemotherapy to palliative care. My sweet, valiant body is wrecked and wracked, my heart is deeply confused yet also crystal clear, and my spirit is weary from Too Much, Too Long. I’m also an Inch Dolly, so it adds certain layers and much responsibility and of course, much Aloneness. The world is horrifying me and I have to practise and re-practise Mindful (dis)Engagement just to stop myself from toppling.

    The Blessedly Good in the form of a Sweet Boy who loves me passionately and crazily, despite the Odds and cruel distance combined with stupid choices; colleagues who never fail to amaze me with their love; unexpected (albeit tricky) connections and allies, and Pieces of Hope glinting through the cracks; and trees all around me that swish in the wind, sometimes so wildly it makes me feel oddly peaceful, as then my outer world matches my inner world and my inner world can just go slow and take a breath.

    Grant me Clarity, Wise Choices, Time, and just Hold Me Tight. Remind me a thousand times you want me, as I have a missing love chromosome (or some such *smiles*) that means I forget repeatedly.

    Wishes of Safety and Gentleness to all.

  3. Holly says:

    A breath of “this moment is right.”

    A breath for this whole week.

    A breath for how a breath can be a pause, a container, a unit of measure, a quality – a whole self-contained moment.

    -o- -o- -o-

    …pebbles for everything else…
    Holly recently posted… How do you reinvigorate a stalled project? – Summer Wardrobe Infusion Update #2

  4. Kathleen Avins
    Twitter: spiralsongkat

    Hello, chicken. An explosion of softness! I appreciate this post so much, and I’m applying the salve right now.

    I’m noticing that lately, for me, the hard things seem huge and overwhelming, while the good things seem small and specific. I don’t mean that the hard is bigger than the good, either; I don’t mean that at all. What *do* I mean? I’m not entirely sure yet, but this feels important. I believe that these small and specific good things are going to sustain me.

    Anyway,here I am,doing the best I can, and I intend to keep on doing just that.

    *lights candle*

  5. Kate says:

    I am in my new place, my safe place, & everything is wonderful. I am _almost_ not terrified it’s all going to disappear! Mostly! Which is sort of huge progress.

    I still need to unload, unpack, & arrange nearly everything I own, but I sort of like that part. So that’s okay. It’s all a mass of lovely Congruencing.
    Kate recently posted… 07/14 — sandia mountains (twice)

  6. VickiB says:

    Well, this has been a week! What worked: repeating my truth, waving my arms, standing my ground, and literally standing rather than sitting.

    Result: MrB is home instead of in a nursing home. This was a big victory on behalf of his health! Today, his first full day at home, he transferred without assistance from his wheelchair to his recliner.

    I’ve had a few bad moments of wondering why I worked so hard to get him home. They were caused by both of us being tired.

    I am not just tired, I am weary. From spending 66 noisy days at the hospital, fighting battles that should not have to be fought in order to get appropriate care. From lack of sleep because I often stayed awake at night to enjoy the silence and not being at the hospital. From, as Magic said, Too Much, Too Long.

    Having him home is challenging. There are assisted transfers, sometimes using a Hoyer lift. There are dressing changes. There are many appointments to be made and then to take him to. And it will be worth it as his health improves and his care becomes easier.

    He has been the most important person in my life for many years, and remembering that it is okay to myself first sometimes has been hard. But he’s home now and as he gets stronger, I’ll have to do less and less and there will be more time for ME and other people and other things.

    Bro has been amazingly helpful, as usual. It’s quiet and I can read and write and think. Life is good.

  7. Kathleen Jowitt
    Twitter: KathleenJowitt

    Cluck cluck chicken

    I have met the Cowboy Paradox over and over again: the way that nothing seems to happen until I am really, truly OK with it not happening. I think it is something to do with finding everything I need inside myself. But sometimes I would just like to have the thing I want when I want it.

    Lots of [traditionally/stereotypically] fraught stuff coming up: money, family, holiday, food. I try to release all the Shoulds I can see and just as I think I’m beginning to get it a whole lot more of them emerge. Getting lost in the Should Let Go Of Shoulds maze.

    [ohhhh… ‘principles’ are very similar to ‘shoulds’. Or are they?]

    Politics continues terrible. The appointment of Justine Greening is a small ray of hope, because now I am less scared of another round of Section 28.

    Fabulous cherry brandy cake.

    This week I would like the superpower of Things Work Out Because Of, Despite, Or Regardless Of My Best Efforts. I’d like to see what it’s like when I stop efforting.
    Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… St James’ Way 3: the rain it raineth

  8. G says:

    this week’s superpowers:

  9. Questing Lee says:

    My Compass is not pointed to North, but West, the ReDirection!

    Hard – My good right arm.
    Watching the Dude. Am I involved enough?
    The Niggle who points out that the House Iguana is Very Old and Deteriorating.

    Good – Clues Everywhere, of course! Since I’m also Mysterious Lee, owner of the Famous Fictional Detective Investigation Agency whose Lead Detective this month is Kate Warne, who is not fictional, but worked for Alan Pinkerton during the Civil War.

    Found The Car for the Rest of My Life. Waiting on Intel.

    Pirates of the Caribbean in October, just waiting for transport to Foreign Lands.

    Hugged in and hugged out of church. Extravagant welcome!

    Realizing that situations where my Freak-out Flag had been orange or red in the past were Serene Blue or Calm White this past week.

    I Am What I Am. May be a thing next church show. Maybe with my own lyrics.

    Just Was – Up, up, and away postponed until November.

  10. CQ
    Twitter: choirqueer

    chicken chicken cheeeeeeeekin!!!

    what’s been working?
    +G of Imagos has been working. It may be time to release it before it stops working. A breath for this.
    +Pegasus Blue is working. Grateful for this in my life.
    +The more I let things Be What They Are, the more that seems to work…I guess.

    i might try…
    +this idea of letting my breath slow me; i love this and i breathe it into me.

    [colorset 7B]
    stately blue, shadowy clover green, royal red velvet, glowing butter, light moss, charcoal, glowing pink

    breathing for mysteries, tangles, enigmas.
    +Breathing for the Mystery of History. Breathing for the tension between Agent Knobos who needs to dive in and not get out till it’s Way Too Much (or even long past that point) and Agent Saebos who needs to run away and hide in a cave where this isn’t real. Breathing for them holding hands, if they’re okay with that, for the possibility of coexistence (not necessarily “peaceful”).
    +Breathing for the Mystery of Bananaburst. Breathing for the scars. Breathing for the Clearing. Breathing for the Space.
    +Breathing for the Mystery of Awaiting. Breathing for the Rocking and breathing for the Steadiness. Breathing. Yes.
    +Breathing for the Mystery of TEO. Breathing for naming it. Breathing for Gathering Courage. Breathing for Pegasus Blue, helping me through.
    +Breathing for the Mystery of Infernal Nomenclature. Breathing for the Misnomering.
    Breathing for the Levels of Greenery. Breathing simple, easy solutions.
    +Breathing for the Continuation of the Mystery of Sparrow Nest. Oy. Breathing slowness. Slowing down.
    +Breathing for the Mystery of Left Hand. Still a mystery. Still nondelightful. Still breathing.
    +Breathing for the Mystery of Facesuck. Slurp. Slurp. Very mysterious.

    breathing for delights, donuts, deliciousness.
    +Breathing for music. Yes. Love.
    +Breathing for Operation Back/Space and the Power of rtFotfqdsb!!
    +Breathing for soft fluffy blankets, perfect for hiding under and delicious nesting
    +Breathing for that super alive feeling when I’m really well hydrated (remember!!)
    +Breathing for the #ShitAbledPeopleSay tag on Twitter <3 <3 <3
    +Breathing for being an INFP, which is actually the best when I really give myself space to be the INFPest I can be :-)
    +Breathing for the Power Dragon Carousel adventure. Mmmm. Breathing. Mmmm. Breathing some more.
    +Breathing for the Tool Box. Mmmhhh. Yes.

    [Superpower Showcase]
    Bit and pieces. Steady threading. Classification. Swim free. Containment suit. rtFotfqdsb(!). Be where I am.

    And our fake band of the week this week iiiiiis… [boop boop beep badoo!] The Electronic Ascetics!
    CQ recently posted… Coconut Miso Leek Soup

  11. Karensu Light_of_Summer
    Twitter: light_of_summer

    <3 <3 <3

    Adrianna's decisiveness sounds WONDERFUL.

    _o_ re all those forms of hard. Thank you for your honesty and bravery and nuance, including re the challenges of being an ally with significant magic beans and also significant challenges re self-care.

    I don't think I knew, before, that your chrysalis retreats have only the one project of finding out what needs to happen to support your process of emerging/becoming–I want to remember that and maybe try it, sometime.

    Can I ask what you do about food during a chrysalis retreat? Do you bring food and stay in your hotel room? Get room service? Go out to already-reliable food places? Go out and watch for clues about possible new places to eat? Some combination? Something I haven't thought of?

    (If I think about doing a chrysalis retreat, myself, I feel concerned that issues around food might significantly distract me from focus on discovering how to support emergence of incoming-me…I would like to find a wonderful way to flow with or around that.)

    I'm VERY intrigued by the salve of what if there is enough and more of everything I need–this is a seed for me dabbing on some of that salve (like sandalwood-vanilla perfume), several times a day, in days ahead. :D

    Thank you, Havi!!!

    Re my own chickening, the thing that stands out most for me, in the past few days, was that I was able to set a boundary very cleanly and effectively in an important relationship with a health-care provider. He even told me he was impressed about it. I was strong, I was clear, I asked instead of accusing or blaming, and I expect to get what I need in that area of that remainder in the future. YAY, both of us, but especially ME, because I was the one who did the emotional labor, and recognized that, and pointed it out to him, too! o/

    With good wishes to all for the week ahead,

    Karensu Light_of_Summer recently posted… Backdated: Hills Under Stars

    • Karensu Light_of_Summer
      Twitter: light_of_summer

      correction to the above: relationship, not remainder

      (phone autocorrect challenges)

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi

      <3 for clean boundaries, beautifully established and getting what you need with clarity!

      Re food, yes it depends, at times I have done combination of the above. One time I brought all my meals, one time I just built hotel restaurant meals into the cost, one time I did takeout a bunch. This time I was in Astoria, a place where I know exactly where there is food I like, made with lots of love, so I just did that. But I took the approach of "Adrianna and I are on honeymoon, so if we order something we don't love then we just laugh about that, and get something else, or if a meal is expensive, we say FINE IT IS OUR HONEYMOON AND WE ARE GOING WITH IT", so that helped a lot, I agree that thinking about food and food-planning can be daunting, I was a little worried about options but it worked out perfectly, and yes, a lot of following instinct and going with clues, and tacos. Clues and Tacos. That's both my new band and also the tl;dr version of this.

Leave a reply

CommentLuv badge