2021: End of May — A Breathing Pause

I have more strength than a month ago, increased capacity. I don’t feel “back at” “normal,” and that’s okay.

I’m able to go to more places without a GPS: the library, the thrift shops, two grocery stores.

I’m spending more time outside when I’m at home — sitting in the backyard in the mornings, often for dinner, and much on the weekends. I didn’t do this at my last couple of houses, as in Crater Lake it was always cold and buggy, and the view was a road with cars going around. At Zion the back porch had no shade, though I had my morning/afternoon 20 min. walk to/from work which kept me grounded and outside. So, in my new surroundings, sitting in the backyard has become a great joy. So accessible. Always well lit — the sun is so high already at 5:30am. Always a comfortable temperature. A chair to sit on. I’ll read, I’ll write, I’ll eat, or I’ll simply look out and watch. Watch the birds, watch the lizards, watch the wind blowing the grasses and the leaves.

Another joy has been reading. I’m very aware that I did the thing — got too excited at “new, new, new” when I entered the city (after 6 months at Buddhist retreat center) and got many from the library when I already had a hefty stack at home from my last place of residence and Goodwill/Savers. So, my goal for the month of June: read 2-3 books from that stack and pass them on / donate / take to Bookmans. Right now, there are 10 books in this stack. I’ll call it my “pass along” stack. Each month I’ll report the size, and really have no reason to buy books from Savers/Goodwill. I picked up a few this weekend while browsing, and then set them down without purchasing. Last week I took a picture of one, then later found the library has it. (But I won’t place new holds until I finish two from this stack. That’s a great compromise.)

I’ve watched a lot of movies this month, as it’s been 1-2 per weekend. This feels like a fun treat, and I love putting in the DVD, watching the preview, and when it’s done, I close the computer. My brother asked me if I miss the internet. No. I don’t miss having it at home; I love this. I’m grateful there’s no internet in my park housing! Because if it was here, I’d be on it. I’d be disconnected from Great Spirit. My attention would be fractured, energy depleted. All I need to see are the trees and plants outside my window right here, right now. They are great teachers.

I’m writing each weekend, a 30-minute writing sit in the mornings. I’ve definitely noticed an increase in creative energy. This is a seasonal cycle, just like plants don’t bloom all year. I was in a winter period over the winter and spring. Now, ideas are coming naturally, and it feels fulfilling to write on the weekends. I have very little barrier; it’s not a task. When timing is right, when it emerges naturally, I’ll turn this content and writing into new creations to share with the world: zines, letter series, etc. For now, I’m simply grateful that I have this creative energy, because I can very clearly remember the winter and spring, and how this energy was not there.

Lynn Andrews has been a fun author to discover. And I’m learning a lot from my Hopi and Navajo coworkers. I’ve never spent time around Native Peoples. Growing up in Wisconsin, I was only surrounded by white Catholics. I’m reading a book about the Hopi currently, watching documentaries, soaking in my Hopi coworker’s presence. Observing, noticing.

Putting Story Mammal practices into play. I’m proud of the day I shared a poem with my maintenance crew at a safety meeting. Bringing my humanity and spirit in places where I’d mistakenly thought they weren’t welcome. Well, we’re all spirits in bodies, so our spirits come with us everywhere. The Earth welcomes our spirits everywhere.

I went on an impromptu hike Saturday morning, 10 miles RT to Kendrick Mountain. The extra weekend day is what sparked the outing; it was great to be hiking in these places I love, and surreal to realize it’s within an hour’s drive from where I currently live. (What!?) Taking some time for it to sink in that I live here. I can live here. I can live in this place which I find beautiful. Not just a one-time thru-hike. Earlier in the month I met someone at another park just north of the city, and hiked a bit of the AZT with a friend the week before. Three hikes this month, hooray! I love to walk. And, I can joyfully spend a weekend without leaving the house/backyard. So, this is an area where it’s helpful to me to set a loose # guideline and track. My goal for June is to hike two trails. That metric will help me be doing this thing I love to do.

I hadn’t done Feldenkrais all month; last weekend I paid to become a supporter of the Feldenkrais Project, which allows me to download the recordings. So I downloaded a bunch, and now I have access at my home. I still find the hour so long, but I did one this weekend after not having touched it since before the move. One a weekend or even a few shorter Yoga for Spinal Fusion audios would be great weekly.

June Guiding Goddess

Sarasvati – The Arts (music)
“Express yourself through creative activities.”

This feels relevant, as I haven’t played ukulele since I moved to my new house. At the Buddhist retreat center, I would play down by the creek, where the water drowned out any sound and I felt free to be loud. I haven’t (yet) found a place in nature near home where I feel free to be loud, but I did reach out to that singing group and was brought music by one of the members just two days ago.

June Intentions

Through the lens of my three focus areas:

Spiritual Devotion

+ Morning/Evening ACIM or Gratitude
+ Honor boundaries when visitors come. I have a friend and his girlfriend coming to stay here later in the month for a wedding. We haven’t talked any details or logistics yet. I know this will use different energy, so my goal is to trust Spirit (not worry), communicate openly, and honor my needs (early bed, amount of socializing, etc.)


+ 2 hikes
+ Songwriting / Singing
[Place crochet on hold… perhaps pick it up in the winter? I’ve been joyfully filling the time without it. I bought it when I thought I’d be lonely. Lately the crochet has felt like a burden, something I continually don’t do. But I have enough creative outlets at the moment. My evenings and weekends feel full as they are, with much space.]

Closing Loops

+ 2 books from stack before placing more holds / buying more books.
+ Publish this and April’s reflections from library wifi
[Do a closing/reflection after final therapy session]


What season of life are you in? Is it a summer, like the northern hemisphere? Or perhaps you’re in a personal season of winter—no energy to create, it’s time to rest, be cozy, and conserve.

Lean into whatever’s feeling present for you. (This is hard to do when the people and spaces around us seem to be in a different season — or in no cycle at all!)

Your intuition is right. All of nature lives in cycles, and we humans are part of that. Practice listening little by little. The clues will get stronger, and your trust will grow as well.

Sending love and light,