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.

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.

Calling in a Gleaming Day

Mood

Not sure exactly what is behind the grumpy mood I woke up in.

The usual suspects of course include the moon, hormones, perceived boundary violations, the poor air quality, the memories of last spring in lockdown and the terrible fires, a post-celebration energy hangover, the long list of things that I do not want to deal with, the endless logistical strategizing of these past nine months on the move, the question of where I might be going next and where after that, because I’m moving again on Saturday and what’s the plan, not knowing if/when/how a vaccine is going to show up in my future, not sure what else exactly. All I know is that everything feels groggy, foggy, elusive.

However I know from experience that while it helps to list Contributing Factors as a form of applying Acknowledgment & Legitimacy, this is also not a mystery I need to solve.

We can shift the mood and the energy without ever figuring out the backstory if there is one. No matter how disconnected I feel from my wishes of Wild Clarity & Joyful Agility, that’s really just neutral information.

Me: Okay, I feel disconnected. Got it. Okay, I don’t like it. That’s fair, that’s reasonable and legitimate, of course we don’t enjoy feeling disconnected babe. We’ve got this.

Gleaming for Congruence

Something I play with sometimes on a day like this when seemingly nothing is working is putting aside my list and calling in a Gleaming day, sometimes known as a Congruencing day. Declaring it.

The idea is to see if we can bring in some playfulness and some order or harmony, maybe we make some things slightly shinier or slightly less foggy, maybe literally, maybe figuratively, maybe some combination of these, and then see how that changes things if it does.

Sometimes clearing space physically helps when I can’t clear internally. That might mean polishing something with intention, and it might mean moving things around strategically or intuitively.

Or maybe I want to throw a small dance party and then do something (haha something?) with that giant pile of dishes, who knows.

And will it make everything better?

Maybe, or, as my Grandma Sarah would have said, it couldn’t hurt.

The point is interrupting the habit-patterns of my mind, the story of This Bad Day, the looping cycle of trying to get things done and giving up and feeling terrible about myself, all of which is a boring tool of capitalism. We want to skip around that and do things differently.

Maybe our Gleaming Day will just make one or two things better, but maybe that’s a lot because everything is connected. Maybe it won’t make things better so much as it will make them different, which is kind of a form of better because contrast is a form of healing in its own way.

Our Gleaming Day doesn’t need to make everything better (though it might), we are just trying to get the energy moving in a new way.

And because everything is connected and fractal, shifting the energy in one place/plane/project will shift things under the surface for all other projects, or at least that’s our working hypothesis. We’re just doing a science.

Starting Points

You probably know already how much I love the practice of Entry, aka first steps, symbolic forms of approach.

And so these are the things I do for entry. You might want different entry practices entirely, that part is up to you.

Mine look like this:

STEP ZERO: RGW. Replenishing Glass of Water, begin with hydration
STEP ONE: ANTHEM. What song puts me in a better mood? Is there a playlist for this?
STEP TWO: TENDERNESS. Lip balm? Hand cream? A symbolic way to be loving towards myself?
STEP THREE: SENSATION. Change sensory state. Open a window, light a candle, deep breath of cinnamon.
STEP FOUR: NAME & RENAME. What three things can I do to change the feel of my space? And can I rename them to make them seem more appealing? Taking out the recycling is now Operation Clear Field Of Vision.

I have so many fun methods for renaming, however I promised myself and my inner monster chorus of No Time that I would only give half an hour to this post including editing, and that was some hilarious underestimating because I don’t understand time, so we will save those fun methods for another time because there is one more thing I want to mention!

Let’s play!

You are invited to use the comments to play along if you like.

I am going to begin with a song, my favorite candle, and I’m going to put the rest of my chai in the blender with oat milk and add some freshly grated nutmeg.

And my secret ops for now are:

  • Operation Clear Field of Vision (take out recycling)
  • Gleefully Demolishing The J. U. M. B. L. E. (the chaos in the sink)
  • And possibly I will also heroically Told Some Fowels, who can say.

Bon Courage

I wish you courage & luck in your secret ops and your playful entry, and I want to just add one more thing, something I learned from the amazing Dori Midnight, and that is the practice of challenging ourselves every day to do at least one thing in the most ludicrous inefficient way possible, as a middle finger to capitalism and all oppressive systems.

We live in a culture that obsesses over productivity and elevates it above joy, but when we are Joyfully Inefficient, when we REBELLIOUSLY REVEL IN OUR INEFFICIENCY, this is not only a subversive practice that changes culture, it is a way of reclaiming joy, pleasure and our own access to creative innovative self-expression.

That’s a helluva concept so you might just want to drop it into consciousness like a pebble into water and let it do its work in its own time. In the meantime, you are welcome to play along, I’m here! Happy Gleaming Day or Gleaming Hour or Gleaming Moment, whenever it comes.

Divisible by 11 (a check-in)

Divisible By Eleven (story hour)

This weekend was both my divorceiversary and my birthday, and I am Divisible By Eleven, so it was celebratory and also very chill.

I was going to do four hundred and forty four sun salutations to mark the day, but then I remembered my need to be OVER THE TOP and made it five hundred and fifty five. Also I like 5s for hamsa protection magic, and obviously I am still trying to impress the assassins of Nanda Parbat.

Other than that, gave myself five hours of slow bobcat time and then made a luscious meal of good things, and stuck candles in my bourbon pecan sea salt fudge masterpiece (pic on instagram). It was a solo party, and it worked for me.

I am so glad to be alive, and that is always worth celebrating.

Weekend Check-in, we made it.

Reviewing the week aka Chicken/Check-in is not only a reassuring ritual and fun to say, but another form of remembering, turning inward with attentiveness.

We can name what was difficult and name what worked, I find naming therapeutic. What am I experiencing and how am I experiencing it? All intel is useful.

Mainly we’re here to take a breath for having made it here. High fives all around and hand-to-heart appreciation.

If I neglect to name something big in the world, could be ADHD, but also I’m on an extended break from news after spiraling hard in December.

Breathing for what was hard, challenging, uncomfortable, not fun…

THING ZERO and THING ONE remain the combination of the pandemic and the dissonance, the lack of an agreed upon reality or even a shared context, re the coronavirus and also in the political.

The pandemic has been so revealing and so clarifying, and that’s maybe the most diplomatic thing I can say about it, but one of the main things it has revealed and clarified is how many people I know (and thought I admired and respected) who view my life as expendable, and seemingly view most lives as expendable.

There are many people, places and experiences I miss fiercely, like my favorite yoga studios, and immersing in a float tank, but even if this thing ends and those experiences make a comeback, I WILL KNOW AND REMEMBER that they stayed open and risked lives, I will remember everyone who held a masks optional event, I will remember the choices people made that put others in harm’s way. And so even if the places I miss return, I will not be able to enjoy them, because now I know.

The pandemic has been such a betrayal in so many ways, and one of the things I resent most is I used to like so many people and now I am unable to trust them.

Really it’s such an all-encompassing theme, betrayals. The year itself betrayed us, the government, the idea that we could work together to help each other, all illusion.

Meanwhile Arizona is in fire season, and the air quality in Tucson is extremely terrible right now. Well, it’s technically in the category they call Poor, but given that I get headaches and a sore throat even in the Moderate zone, I’m gonna go ahead and categorize this as terrible.

Not to mention disorienting because it is bewildering to me when other people don’t react as strongly, another way I’m experiencing a different reality than everyone around me.

Also it is not the most fun having a dry cough in plague times and having to remind myself over and over again that I have a much stronger reaction to things in the air than anyone else I know.

Oh, and I watched the pilot of a show that someone recommended, and they neglected to mention that it has a TRAUMATIZING EVENT in it, and I thought I did okay watching it, but back to nightmares at night and angry pacing by day, and so much tending to the me who survived the bad things but is not okay.

Other than that, just a lot of grief. And it wants to visit between 3am and 5am, which is not the most convenient time for a sobbing session, but that’s where we’re at right now.

Breathing for what was good, reassuring, joyful, sweet

This week held lovely things.

Solo dance parties. Smiling to myself. Hanging out with the best dog.

Also I had more (distanced) human interaction this week than I’ve had in a year, and omg IT IS SUCH A DELIGHT TO TALK TO PEOPLE AGAIN, I really needed that. And I wish my good mood was not so tied to this because it is so hard to attain, but I GOT TO HAVE THREE WHOLE CONVERSATIONS THIS WEEK AND I FEEL LIKE A NEW PERSON.

Got to walk in the sun for an entire hour with my favorite person to do that or anything with, and my face hurt from smiling.

I made time for myself this week, I am learning to be the person who always has enough time for me, which means taking time, and being generous with my time. Here’s to the pleasure of lounging on the patio in the sunshine, and the joy of being in one place and not needing to move for another week.

Not to mention the treasure of hot tub time under the stars surrounded by saguaro.

I baked gluten free chocolate banana bread, who am I.

My wish for supportive solutions that hold me in high regard is percolating, and many lovely unanticipated options for potential living situations are showing up out of nowhere which is exciting, and maybe they are clues and not yeses, but I can tell they are lighting the way. Things can work out beautifully, I just don’t know how yet, and I don’t need to.

Delicious things remain delicious. Vengeance remains a delightful pursuit. Legs up the wall remains a perfect way to spend an evening.

Thank you again so much to everyone who sent me surprise Appreciation Money this week via Barrington’s Discretionary, it is always welcome and received with love, and if I can land in a place, which is the wish-goal of wish-goals, I can share more writing here, that’s my preferred way to fill time; writing and hopeful thoughts.

Play with me in the comments! You know the drill…

I love company! You can always use a made-up name in the comments whether in service of safety or playfulness.

We are all going through what we are going through. So we make this a sanctuary by not care-taking or problem—solving for other people, we can leave each other warmth or hearts of love or pebbles of witnessing. I still have not figured out how to get emoji to work in the comments, sorry!!

How are we holding up? Anything hard and/or good in your week that you want to name here? Sometimes naming helps. I have found for me that taking breaths while I name things helps a lot.

And if that’s not your thing, you can say hi or name something you’d like more of for the coming week.

Love ya,
Havi

The longest & shortest month is over (a check-in)

A dream and an accomplishment (story hour)

I had a terrible dream last night, and it started out so beautifully and so promising. In the dream, I went to visit my favorite person to smile at, and we beamed at each other happily for a long time, and on the way back to my car, someone came at me with a knife and stabbed me.

When I told my smiling companion about the dream, they immediately asked where I was stabbed. I didn’t know.

While it rattled me, I think this dream is not so much about [the dream events] as it is the return of March.

A year ago we had no idea, or maybe an inkling of an inkling, but we did not know the extent to which everything would be overturned and undone; certainly I did not know how I would be undone.

February, the longest and shortest month, is over, and a new March is approaching, and there is momentous anticipation along with a sort of panicky trepidation in the air, because we are all deeply traumatized from the last one, and the way it seemingly lasted for years.

And so I am being given an opportunity to remember and practice Now Is Not Then — even and especially when now reminds me of then, as well as the superpower of Do-overs Forever, which was my February theme and really my whole life theme. Reset restart. New breath, new moment, what is here?

In the meantime, if you’re wondering if I exceeded my January record of 8000 sun salutations aka Sundulations, despite the month having fewer days in general and fewer sundulationable days due to Trauma and some chronic pain stuff, I am waiting for that call from Assassin School. Any day now.

Raising a glass of lavender sparkling water to my NINE THOUSAND AND NINETY NINE February sun salutations, because I’ve got nine thousand ninety nine problems but my morning ritual is not one of them.

Thanks to Laura for saying I should get the opposite of the Nobel Peace Prize, the Lebon Vengeance Prize, yes please to this prize being a thing and to me getting it.

Weekend Check-in, we made it.

Reviewing the week aka Chicken/Check-in is not only a reassuring ritual and fun to say, but another form of remembering, turning inward with attentiveness.

We can name what was difficult and name what worked, I find naming therapeutic. What am I experiencing and how am I experiencing it? All intel is useful.

Mainly we’re here to take a breath for having made it here. High fives all around and hand-to-heart appreciation.

If I neglect to name something big in the world, could be ADHD, but also I’m on an extended break from news after spiraling hard in December.

Breathing for what was hard, challenging, uncomfortable, not fun…

THING ZERO and THING ONE remain the combination of the pandemic and the dissonance, the lack of an agreed upon reality or even a shared context, re the coronavirus and also in the political.

I said this last week and it’s still true, so much time goes to trauma processing and rage processing from this and related things, also every single aspect of the attack on the Capitol, the horrors of the Trump administration and also literally every time I remember that the Supreme Court exists, etc.

This week’s challenges were mostly boundary-related and ADHD-related. How do I function in a world when I live outside of time? And how do I explain what I want to people whose wants for me are so entirely different as to exist in a different plane.

I had some uncomfortable realizations that were useful, but it took a while in the discomfort to get to the useful.

Tired of situations that do not hold me in high regard.

The ongoing mystery of where/how to live, and how to stop moving all the time.

And the ongoing question: how do I shower myself in adoration and affection to such an extent that any from anyone else is just a fun bonus? Who knows, but that’s the practice.

Breathing for what was good, reassuring, joyful, sweet

I baked the tiniest and most adorable ancient Persian vengeance cookies, aka hamentaschen, which I have not done in many years. As my favorite youtube chef would say, you are after all the Snookie of your ancient Persian vengeance cookie. And I am going to challenge myself to post a pic on Instagram for you, even though being online kinda stresses me out right now.

Poolside lounging like the happiest cat, writing full moon wishes and communing with the mountains.

Last night’s nightmare aside, I have been sleeping well and looking forward to bed instead of fighting with bed time, which is the dream.

Today I moved back to my favorite place, and I get to stay here for two entire weeks, and I am so thrilled to be reunited with this space that loves me back.

Speaking of places and wanting them to love me back, I bravely had a hard long distance conversation with the dragon (my 150 sq ft trailer in New Mexico), and it was fruitful. The builder built the dragon to be a very small home, and I wanted that, but the dragon does not wish to be a home. The dragon wishes to be a place for ritual.

There are a variety of forms this could take. The dragon would welcome being a place to write a specific form of writing it desires to bring into the world, or a place to create special concoctions to be shared with others (vanilla extract, very good mustard). It knows clearly that its purpose is for magic and not to be lived in, even in a magical way, and it took a while to be able to accept this, because I was trying to understand it. But this is one of those things where understanding is besides the point. The dragon knows what is best, and nothing is wrong, I didn’t make a mistake, I just need to reconfigure my vision.

Is that hard or good? I guess both, but in my heart I know it is good that we came to this clarity together. I am someone who knows how to listen and to reconfigure, these are things I can do, and that matters.

Delicious things remain delicious: desert tinctures, the mountains turning pink in the evening, morning bobcat time (stretching and moving), the way I am smiled at by the person who smiles at me like that, listening to Arabic music in the car and recognizing more words, the way Incoming Me just wants to wrap me up in love.

Ancient Persian Vengeance Cookies aside, I do love that I come from a people that celebrates grudges. Purim is truly the best holiday and I’m not just saying that because I was a Purim baby. Imagine being so MIDDLE FINGER IN THE AIR to the person who tried to mess with you that you name a whole dessert after your enemy, and eat it each year just to celebrate their downfall. Your enemies failed in their attempts to wrong you, and you name a cookie after them. Honestly inspirational.

In that spirit, I renewed a domain that I don’t want or need, because of an ancient grudge of my own, and the person who wants it could just have it if they’d apologize for being terrible to me, but they don’t want to, and so I took pleasure in this yearly ritual. It’s the little things.

This week, in addition to genuinely joyful grudges, also held insight, patience, self-tenderness, good conversations, warmth and hope. And much writing about some familiar and new goal-wishes, aka Gwishes…

Thank you again so much to everyone who sent me surprise Appreciation Money this week via Barrington’s Discretionary, it is always welcome and received with love, and if I can land in a place, which is the wish-goal of wish-goals, I can share more writing here, that’s my preferred way to fill time; writing and hopeful thoughts.

Play with me in the comments! You know the drill…

I love company! You can always use a made-up name in the comments whether in service of safety or playfulness.

We are all going through what we are going through. So we make this a sanctuary by not care-taking or problem—solving for other people, we can leave each other warmth or hearts of love or pebbles of witnessing. I still have not figured out how to get emoji to work in the comments, sorry!!

How are we holding up? Anything hard and/or good in your week that you want to name here? Sometimes naming helps. I have found for me that taking breaths while I name things helps a lot.

And if that’s not your thing, you can say hi or name something you’d like more of for the coming week.

Love ya,
Havi

Dessert First (a check-in but also a philosophy)

Dessert First (story hour)

I had no motivation for anything at all this week, and Incoming Me keeps saying DESSERT FIRST, and I thought she meant in a more literal sense like bribing myself with sweetness.

But eventually my incoming selves got tired of me not getting it, and explained to me again in no uncertain terms that I can’t fight reality; I have to work with what is. And at the most basic level of [what is] rests the simple truth that I am motivated by Pleasure, Vengeance & Rebellion, but mostly pleasure.

Vengeance will work, and Rebellion, aka being told I can’t do something, will absolutely get me to do anything, but Pleasure is the most reliable door back to myself.

And back to myself is where I want to be before starting any task or setting off on any adventure.

This means, they said, that if I’m feeling grumpy and resentful (haha, which I very much was), it’s because I’m not living by Dessert First as a way of being, and I need to shower myself in pleasure before attempting anything at all.

Anyway, that’s why the check-in didn’t happen until Tuesday evening, because I had to re-learn this and acquire ginger cardamom chocolate, and take a delicious hot shower with a bath bomb. Most importantly, I had make the choice to ignore my long list and play hooky until I had wants again.

Weekend Check-in, we made it.

Reviewing the week aka Chicken/Check-in is not only a reassuring ritual and fun to say, but another form of remembering, turning inward with attentiveness.

We can name what was difficult and name what worked, I find naming therapeutic. What am I experiencing and how am I experiencing it? All intel is useful.

Mainly we’re here to take a breath for having made it here. High fives all around and hand-to-heart appreciation.

If I neglect to name something big in the world, could be ADHD, but also I’m on an extended break from news after spiraling hard in December.

Breathing for what was hard, challenging, uncomfortable, not fun…

THING ZERO and THING ONE remain the one two punch of the pandemic and the dissonance, the lack of an agreed upon reality or even a shared context, re the coronavirus and also in the political.

Related to this, and also in a more general sense, I just keep finding myself thinking about how trauma processing is just a full time unpaid job that is exhausting, on the personal and in the collective.

I am also thinking a lot about how, in addition to the everything of everything, we are not recovering from the Trump acquittal. In fact, it is continuing to be very…stirring up lots of other stuff about how the bad people thrive and are rewarded, if that makes sense. As if we are all extra walking around in our trauma. We knew the country wasn’t safe but it’s more known-known now, it was openly acknowledged that nothing fucking matters, and that wasn’t just an aspect of the last four years, that is how it works.

Even as someone who is really not even marginally patriotic, I still experienced the attack on the capitol as a kind of home invasion. We watched an attack on our home, and then, as always, there are no consequences for the people who do us harm.

I moved again, and again. I am in the tenth place I have lived just in February, and there is still one more place before March. A few more days were lost to trauma and processing and recovering.

There was pounding on the door while I was doing yoga. Was that this week? What is time. I understand nothing.

I cried at the eye doctor because I didn’t have an emergency contact to fill in. I had to look up the number of someone who is barely speaking to me because I couldn’t think of anyone.

I also cried because I didn’t know how to answer any of the questions. What is my occupation. Do I use a computer for work? When did I last visit an eye doctor, what address should they send a reminder postcard to in a year, who knows, how could a person know any of these things. Not me.

And I also cried because it’s been a month since I’ve been able to do laundry or cook. Basically there was a lot of crying this week, because I forgot how my cycle works, even though the Designated Sobbing Days (DSD, there’s a Fake Band of the Week!) arrive at the exact same time every month and have done so since the first Gulf War, but can I remember that? I cannot.

Other than that, I am just deeply involved in the ongoing question: how do I shower myself in adoration and affection to such an extent that any from anyone else is just a fun bonus, not a top-off and definitely not a drug I crave and become beholden to? Well, that’s a mystery, isn’t it. I am working on it.

Breathing for what was good, reassuring, joyful, sweet

Delicious things are delicious: the sun, the light on the mountains, the long beautiful drive to a favorite secret spot that I do on my in-between days when I have to check out of one place and cannot yet land at the new one.

Sleep is delicious. I love climbing into bed, ready to become one with the weighted blanket.

Morning bobcat time (yoga, movement, breathing, stretching) is delicious, and so are my sun salutations that put me into a stupor-trance of focus and wonder. They don’t tire me these days, they invigorate me, and that too is some sort of plateau passed.

Morning epiphanies and insights are delicious too, my wise selves talk to me in meditation, in journaling, in the shower, when I step outside to greet the sun.

My rituals are delicious.

The month of Adar is here (my birthday month, in the Hebrew calendar) and the month of Adar is for joy, and I feel it like a door. Victorious. Joyful. We made it. Good job. I am going to be forty four, which feels magical and impossible, against all odds, who would have thought, but here I am, alive and glad for this life.

This week held love, affection, warmth, insight, inspiration, hope, tenderness, sharing, kindness, smiling and surprise soup. As hard as the hard things were (and they were), I feel tremendously thankful for the treasure revealed, and hopeful for a new week. And sure, it’s Tuesday but also what is time.

And while I am sad about not having access to an oven, that is a solvable mystery and I am welcoming safe simple solutions that hold me in high regard, and trying to focus on how great it is that I want to bake again.

Imagine whispering to November Me who couldn’t get out of bed that February Havi is absolutely craving spending an afternoon baking bread. Things shift and move and get better. It’s not easy to trust that, but hey guess what, it happens anyway.

Thank you so much to everyone who sent me surprise Appreciation Money this week via Barrington’s Discretionary, it covered the terrible place I had to cancel on which was an alarming expense. What treasure, thank you! It is always welcome and if I can land in a place, I can share more writing here, that’s my preferred way to fill time; writing and hopeful thoughts.

Play with me in the comments! You know the drill…

I love company! You can always use a made-up name in the comments whether in service of safety or playfulness.

We are all going through what we are going through. So we make this a sanctuary by not care-taking or problem—solving for other people, we can leave each other warmth or hearts of love or pebbles of witnessing. I still have not figured out how to get emoji to work in the comments, sorry!!

How are we holding up? Anything hard and/or good in your week that you want to name here? Sometimes naming helps. I have found for me that taking breaths while I name things helps a lot.

And if that’s not your thing, you can say hi or name something you’d like more of for the coming week.

Love ya,
Havi

backwards & upside down chicken check-in

Honey Coated

We have a Monday chicken check-in this week because Friday was packing up again, Saturday was given to coming up with a new plan, and both Sunday and Monday were moving days again, because everything in Tucson is booked right now, and all my backup plans fell through.

Anyway, I didn’t want to throw away leftover ingredients and provisions from my nine day stay in the canyon, so I organized them all very carefully in my Wandering Galley Kitchen On The Road backpack, a thing I invented.

And somehow a very expensive jar of lavender honey decided to open itself along the drive and thoroughly coat every single item I had packed so thoughtfully.

Have you ever watched a cooking video where they tell you to really rub your spice mixture in well to make sure you get every crevice. This jar of honey was on that kind of mission.

So now I’m on cleanup duty and wondering if this is, hmmm, not exactly a metaphor but kind of an encapsulation for the Month of Do-Overs.

In other words, plans are bullshit, preparation is a joke, choose the path of least resistance, follow ease, react less, let things be done when they’re done, etc.

Weekend Check-in, we made it.

Reviewing the week aka Chicken/Check-in is not only a reassuring ritual and fun to say, but another form of remembering, turning inward with attentiveness.

We can name what was difficult and name what worked, I find naming therapeutic. What am I experiencing and how am I experiencing it? All intel is useful.

Mainly we’re here to take a breath for having made it here. High fives all around and hand-to-heart appreciation.

If I neglect to name something big in the world, could be ADHD, but also I’m on an extended break from news after spiraling hard in December.

Breathing for what was hard, challenging, uncomfortable, not fun…

THING ZERO and THING ONE are still the pandemic and the dissonance, the lack of an agreed upon reality or even a shared context, whether regarding the coronavirus or political reality or anything at all.

The place I was staying had a super bowl party. They invited me to their super bowl party. I am not keyed in to anything, so not only did I not know it was the time of year for the super bowl, it had not even occurred to me that it would still be happening in the middle of a pandemic. Seems like a lot of touching????

Which is honestly just rude. Like, don’t rub it in, football players. Or lavender honey.

Anyway, the point is, I have not socialized in nearly a year, unless you count the walk with my friend when the hornet stung me, and I do not plan to socialize until everyone has been vaccinated, and even then, not entirely sure if I want to. The entire situation was baffling to me. Like wandering into another reality. I don’t like it.

Related: it is challenging for me to conceptualize any kind of after. My trust is low. I’ll be glad to get a vaccine whenever that happens but having any amount of excitement feels like another variation on the Mueller Report, a hope-generating scam. I hope I’m wrong, and it’s just my Eeyore side wanting to protect me from let-down.

In addition to being a covid party hot spot, my temporary home also featured a construction project and a very impressive audio system, with a subwoofer that took its job seriously. Have you ever found yourself in a car next to another car thumping bass with such intensity that you have an out of body experience? If you collect disruptive sensory experiences, that’s one for the books. Anyway, that’s what it was like when they were watching sports or a movie, but I’d already made several requests in the interest of covid safety, and wasn’t up to more negotiating.

I hex them with email filters that don’t work (hat tip to Kathryn for my new favorite hex), and a collection of small misfortunes, minor annoyances which taken together make them wonder if they’ve wronged a sorceress.

Also discovered I’m allergic to mesquite. Really the only thing better than vibrating all the way out of your body due to a buzzsaw and a subwoofer is doing that while an alarming amount of snot is gushing out of your nose.

And V day is a prime example of how external culture is just generally unkind, uninclusive, celebrating the wrong things for the wrong reasons. I make my own plans for Victorious Day, and renew my commitment and devotion to a life of Pleasure & Freedom, enjoying the deliciousness of my life my way, and I try to avoid the world.

So of course my hosts gave me a pink card in a red envelope wishing me a happy [rhymes with Banal-entines] day, and cookies made only from ingredients I can’t consume, and it kind of felt like being given trash. I couldn’t think of a polite way to get out of it, which kind of sums of my entire two weeks of boundary issues, though I did manage to swiftly extricate myself from the place that was haunted, and the one with the yappy little dog.

Something about selfishness, need to explore that, lots of situations where people were just shockingly inconsiderate, and it was not about me, but same situation: having to share information about what I needed which seemed basic and obvious, and resenting having to put in a request for obvious basic needs, and then that information, once shared, not being respected at all. Gonna ponder on that some more.

Breathing for what was good, reassuring, joyful, sweet

  • Sleeping well, doing my best to make JLo and the sleep gods proud by going to bed early.
  • Do-overs are what I do best. I’m an agile bobcat, I land on my feet, I can self-rescue.
  • I walked a labyrinth six times, two of those times backwards. That is, I backwards-walked it, you can only move one way in a labyrinth but I did it facing the other way, in honor of my wise, playful and completely magical uncle Svevo who is a devotee of backwards-walking, and it is his birthday this week, celebratory cake for Svevo.
  • The labyrinth gave me quite a bit of insight and several good clues, but my favorite part is that it told me, “You love a challenge. So use that.” It’s true. I do love a challenge. And also I spend a lot of time feeling annoyed about various challenges in my life. How can I use my love of challenges to find more fun in all the upheaval?
  • Victorious Day was surprisingly quite lovely despite some personal painful history there. I did Victorious things. My long lost lover gave me the gift of my favorite ginger chai cookie and we had a very distanced (as in: separate parts of the city) cookie date by text, it was simple and loving and very sweet and, this is a weird thing to say about someone I have complicated feelings towards, uncomplicated. The cookie too was delicious and a simple pleasure that went a long way (superpowers of that please), and I was inspired to do other delicious things like nap and enjoy quiet alone time, plus late night solitudinal immersion in a triangular hot tub under the stars.
  • The things that are good are very good. I feel appreciative of all the ways I am caring for myself in this time. My practice is holding me. Movement, meditation, sleep rituals, writing rituals, keeping phone off, it’s all supporting me, and I feel excitement again, about a surprisingly wide variety of things.
  • I am training hard right now and it feels amazing. Not sure for what, but the what will reveal itself later, like so many things.
  • While it is certainly more challenging to stick to my wish of Delicious Food, Beautifully Plated while constantly on the mood (haha that was supposed to be on the move, but why not both), I am making it work.
  • Deeply thankful. Reassuring texts from friends, sunshine, the saguaro who wave at me, each new word I learn, feeling the urge to slow down a lot on a quiet road, and then an entire family of javelina crossed right in front of me. Magic. Hopefulness. Basking in appreciation for moments of grace and this experience of being alive.
  • Speaking of my grateful thank-you heart, three more people sent me surprise Appreciation Money this week via Barrington’s Discretionary, and I said this last week, and it’s still true, it is so lovely and it is easing my heart around the expense and time involved in moving and not being able to work, and also reminded me that I keep forgetting to share the link. It is always welcome and if I can land in a place, I can share more writing here, that’s my preferred way to fill time; writing and hopeful thoughts.

Play with me in the comments! You know the drill…

I love company! You can always use a made-up name in the comments whether in service of safety or playfulness.

We are all going through what we are going through. So we make this a sanctuary by not care-taking or problem—solving for other people, we can leave each other warmth or hearts of love or pebbles of witnessing. I still have not figured out how to get emoji to work in the comments, sorry!!

How are we holding up? Anything hard and/or good in your week that you want to name here? Sometimes naming helps. I have found for me that taking breaths while I name things helps a lot.

And if that’s not your thing, you can say hi or name something you’d like more of for the coming week.

Love ya,
Havi

The Fluent Self