This Particular War

The first year we were married I had major surgery and Stan had to drain my “weep hole'“ when he changed my bandages. I helped him apply hemorrhoid ointment on our honeymoon. He wrecked his car the day we moved in together. His dad died the day before my birthday after we had been married three years. Our cat died on our second anniversary.

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HOME

In Reiki One, three weeks ago, I learned that the root chakra represents home. The root chakra is red and located between our legs at the base of our spines. It’s connected to our adrenals. I lost one of my adrenals 17 years ago, the year I got married and bought the house my parents divorced in, where my mother raised me.

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Soft Places

This has been one of those summers where so many things I thought could never possibly come together have come together. Where there have been swift reversals of fortune, sudden happy endings, beautiful new beginnings. Our falling apart house even got brand new siding. I think I saw a unicorn. At one point I found myself saying things are just so good I just don't know what to do. 

That's where I went wrong. I will never say something so dumb out loud again. Ever.

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Wilderness

I am at a writing retreat in the mountains.  I have notebooks- new and old. Pens- black and blue. Coffee and a spectacular view of the countryside overlooking a perfectly inviting wooden desk. There are three other writers here- dedicated, beautiful, serious writers providing the perfect backdrop and setting for creative explosion. Only there doesn't seem to be a single thing inside of me ready or willing to explode. 

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Suspended State of Disbelief

Those of us who've hit an emotional or physical bottom know the exact texture, smell and feel of  our faces, knees and tender bits scraping across the ground, sharp broken objects, course and scratchy sand. Those of us who have survived know the feeling of being lifted or dragged back through a surface where we could once again gasp for air. But who pulled us up? God? Physics? Ourselves? A lifeguard with a firm, strong hand?

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Worth

One of the reasons I love old photos so much is that they help me see me from outside of myself. Looking from the outside in instead of the inside out creates a natural distance between me and the insane voice in my head. For this same reason, I often ask my students to to try writing about themselves in the third person as a break from me, myself and I.

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Midlife Muscle Car

Last night I set out to buy a practical, dependable family car but came home with a red hot sexy muscle car instead. Whoops! As I sat signing a dead body's weight worth of paperwork I suddenly sat up straight in my chair. OH MY GOD WAIT A MINUTE AM I HAVING A MIDLIFE CRISIS?? 

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The Death of a Dream + the Launch of a Book

Last night I threw a book launch I never planned to throw for a book I never planned to write. All my life I dreamed of being a famous author in a big city with a big agent and an even bigger publishing house. But that dream died a brutal, gory death when my third book was rejected by every agent I sent it to. It was a very dead death. A death that broke my heart. That made me question my worth.  

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Portals to Porches

In the last week, with less than 24 hours of transition time between, I’ve both attended a 5 Rhythms Dance retreat called Portals and led a Life in 10 Minutes writing retreat at the Porches.

Though I have identified most of my life as a writer, dance has always been for everyone else. Ideas focused in my mind. Music was about the lyrics. Interactions with people were what you had to say to them and what they said- or didn't say- to you. Words reigned supreme, the master of the mind. The body has always been something to be gotten around, dragged around, forced to obey- even though of course it never did. Like a hungry child my body has tried to get my attention in a million ways and I've had no idea how to listen.

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Holy Land

At the beginning of this week I taught Vision Quest, my first ever camp for adults. This afternoon I'm leaving for a three day dance retreat featuring a fire pit and a crystal bowl bath though frankly I only know what one of those things are. I have always been a seeker in search of the  extraordinary,  hunting for God in ecstasy and LSD, men and mountain tops. My problem has never been finding a spiritual high. That's easy. The problem has been the inevitable low, the depressing headfirst crash back into reality, the extreme gap between the thing I’ve set out to do and the return to the life I tried to leave behind. Many of my spiritual experiences have not been unlike getting drunk, making 10 new best friends, and figuring out the meaning of life only to pass out face down on the couch and waking up hungover, throwing up and covered in sharpie.

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