How is your body feeling lately? Are you feeling more awake and ready to go? Or still super tired? Bubbling with new energy? Or maybe the exhaustion of this past year is catching up to you?
Earlier this week, on my solo morning walk, I saw some fuzzy, furry spirals of unfurling ferns, finding their way toward the light, finding their way into their fernness.
I was planning to show that to the kids on our afternoon walk, but before we made it to the one I saw in the morning, Kesem (my 8yo) spotted a different one.
“What is that, Mama?” she asked with the enthusiasm of curiosity and discovery.
I look at her and see the unfurling of a goddess. Her process of becoming. A magnificent surge of life force blossoming into being. Who she is spirals up and out toward the light. Who she will continue to become held in the fuzz of possibility – the fuzz on a baby fern spiral, like the fuzz on a newborn baby, concealing and at the same time hinting at the not yet told stories protected underneath this layer.
The natural world is unfolding. Spring is sprinting toward its peak. Energetically, life is moving outwards, into sunlight, into expression – life is spiraling into being,
The human world seems to be uncurling too.
A piece of justice served on a bed of hope coming to us in the form of this week’s verdict – GUILTY! We can breathe.
Moments before the judge delivered the verdict, Makiyah Bryant, a 15 year old black girl, was shot by the police in Columbus Ohio.
Systemic Racism expressed through police brutality will not melt away in a day.
We are witnessing change. Change that unfurls out of fierce battles. Change that is not fast enough. But change. We gotta stay alert and active. Lean into hope, and push against the systems of oppression with all our might. We must bring about more change.
(BTW Check out Two Distant Strangers on Netflix when you have 30 minutes. My husband, Andrew, was the Supervisor Producer on this film, nominated for an Academy Award in the short film category).
The world is reopening. It’s not just the flowers that are blooming right now. We’re not post pandemic yet, and yet people and businesses are unrolling and uncurling.
But America continues to unfold who she is, with surging gun violence, and republicans that push for a bill that protects drivers who hit protesters with cars (what the actual fuck?!?!)
Change and stuckness, hope and despair, loss and newness. The fabric of our experience, of reality, of life, is woven together by contradiction, collaboration, and complexity,
How are your emotional/mental spaces? Do you feel expansive? Excited? Depressed? Hopeful? Frustrated? Nervous? Ready? Lost? Everything all at once?
Some of us are ready to bloom. Some of us wish we could stay in the shade, underground, unexposed, in our caves.
The process of becoming who we are and the unfolding journey of our growth is made of both inward and outward moving currents. After a year of quarantine, flavored with the cry for social justice, painted with political stress, some of us feel charged and ready. Others might feel the pull toward the inner worlds stronger than ever before. To become more of who we are requires getting deeply close to the core. And we need to learn to walk the edges of our being too. We need to inhabit the inner spaces, and learn how to be vulnerable within the intimate spaces of the soul. And we live in a world, so we need to find authentic, caring, and daring ways to weave ourselves into it.
In the cave of the heart, in the dark womb of our lives, we tap into a well of creative power. The creative spark reminds us that the art of being who we are does not always lead to expression.
To unfurl into our fernness, we sometimes need to spiral inwardly. And like a snail in a spiral shaped shell, we might live inside the inward curl for longer than what we thought we would, longer than what society tells us is appropriate.
In the shell, in the spiral turned within, beneath the fuzzy furr of the not yet uncurled, we harness the artistry of being who we are, and then unfold into many more pieces of self.
Some things, like White Supremacy, and police brutality against non-white bodies, and gun laws, need to change fast. Way faster.
Other things, like the reconstruction of the self by shattering into infinite pieces, and the art project of becoming more of ourselves – that we can take time with.
So breathe, dear one. And in the process of recreating who we are, as we emerge from trauma, unmet needs, broken dreams, and loss, let’s take the time that we need, and give each other the space. Let’s not force the reopening on bodies that still need to be curled in the fuzz.
Let’s honor our own, as well as each other’s pace. If there’s one thing that can help shift us out of the brutality of capitalism, the oppression of patriarchy, and the harm of White Supremacy, is to stop treating life as a race.
Take your time, gentle soul.