The Marvelous Crumb

Follow Joy. Find Belonging.

Tag: Planet (page 1 of 2)

For all the other “late bloomers”

Last Sunday, I turned 36. And even though life does not look like what I imagined it would at this age — no house, no babies, no pets, no partner — I’m not ashamed of my years.

There’s a settledness that has arrived, a trusting in the unfolding. And in this resting, I’ve discovered something unexpected.  By unwinding from expectations of how I should be, what I should have and how I should be living, I’m finding a celebration of what is.

It’s like bushwhacking through dense jungle in search of water while standing in a fresh, sparkling pool. If we could just stop looking ahead, we might find relief by simply looking around.

This relief is remembering that life doesn’t have to look like anything other than what it is. I don’t have to be anyone other than who I am. Everything is abundantly enough.

Yes, there is heartbreak.
Yes, there is tragedy.
The planet is dying, our systems are broken. There are bills and deadlines and people who let us down, don’t show up and don’t seem to care.

But this, the glittering pool I’m talking about, is the cool water of restoration. It is the ever-present antidote of enoughness. We lose it in our quest to “measure up” and find in the reclaiming of rooting down.

This aging process, for me, has been a journey of reconnecting to the person I’ve always been. It’s learning to let go of the stories and fear of judgment and instead trusting and cautiously bringing forth an unbridled me-ness.

I believe that this is what the world is asking of us. The house, the children, the robust social presence, the thriving business, the perfect partner — sure, fine — but this is not what we’re living for. Striving for only these results in a world that does not work.

Instead, we’re being asked to show up with our quivering me-ness as the only means for building a world based on authentic connection. It’s about love — for self and planet. I know, there’s that ubiquitous L word, but there’s just no beating around the bush here.

Sometimes this looks like “not knowing.”
Sometimes this looks like being “a late bloomer.”
Sometimes this looks like “not having your shit together.”
Sometimes this looks like not having “grown up.”

If you, like myself, sometimes feel “behind,” and worry that your unconventional existence may prove disastrous down the road, may I offer another possibility? What if you are really a trailblazer? The tip of the wave hurdling through space and in this journey paving the way for a more congruous, more alive way of living? How brave. How revolutionary.

TAP YOUR UNBRIDLED YOU-NESS

What are the practices that bring you to yourself? Make your energetic presence swell? Remind you that you are part of something?

I’m being brought to myself when I slow down. Walk instead of drive. Soak in the late afternoon light. Stop to smell things. Look up. Listen without racing ahead. Collect leaves. Write with an actual pen.

I’m on the right path when I feel a little scared. Before I press publish.  Asking for support. Showing up at an event alone. Facilitating a group. Planning a workshop. Asking for what I’m worth. Making a boundary.

I am free when I let myself have “it.” Dancing in the front row. Wearing a tutu. Glittering myself. Reading my work allowed. Dressing by mood. Saying how I really feel. Savoring something delicious.

My heart is open when I drop my agenda. Observing strangers in moments of tenderness. Talking to my niece. Listening to a beautiful piece of music.

What are these practices for you?

 

Power is not a 4-letter word

Power

These days “power” seems synonymous with money, violence and fear.

It conjures images of Wall Street greed, banker bailouts, Kim Jong-un, Putin and #45.

Rather than strategizing or bargaining for power (which is how I’ve believed it is obtained), I’ve actively done the opposite – admonishing and pushing it away.

Power? No, thank you.
I am compassionate.
I am a champion of the powerless!
I believe in humanity.

Actively seeking power has seemed in direct opposition to these ideas. Seeking power meant slithering into back rooms, turning a blind eye, conjuring dirty deals and peddling cheap goods. It meant selling out. If I am granted power it will come when I’m busy doing other things – things that have merited its arrival. Otherwise, I’m content to humbly toil.

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Earth Day is not About Saving the Planet

Earthrise

Earthrise

You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From our there on the moon, international politics looks so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, ‘Look at that, you son of a bitch. – Edgar Mitchell, Apollo 14 Astronaut.

The earth is warming at an unprecedented pace. This is inarguable.
Sea levels are rising leading to an increase in coastal flooding.
Climate models project increased drought in the American Southwest
Weather is becoming more extreme.
The seasons are shifting.
Air pollution is increasing.
Animals are dying and some will go extinct.

We are on a path where these things will continue and intensify.

And while many mobilize to halt these realities – to develop machines that will suck CO2 from the air, save the polar bears, protect the Great Barrier Reef –I believe these efforts are only a part of the real task before us.

We do not need to save the planet.

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In the ocean, I discovered the power of surrender

Sacred Waipio Valley

Sacred Waipio Valley. We hiked down to swim in the water and warm ourselves on the black sand.

I did not know when I booked a trip to Hawaii in December that it would fall in the middle of so many important projects – each like a precious jewel requiring constant attention and regular polishing.

How could I put one down for a frivolous vacation? Yet, I’m not one to go back on my word or undo plans already set into motion, and a part of me knew I was being called to the island for some reason.

I thought this trip was about reclaiming my power.
I thought it was about learning to live with a broken heart.

But things are never what you think they will be.

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I have come to the mother

This morning I woke to the gentle drum of rain kissing giant palm fronds.

I have come to the Big Island – to the mother, to whisper to her the secrets of my silent sorrows and be held in her generous bosom.

My host, a dear friend who like me cannot believe it has been three years, is now sautéing sausages, onions and peppers for the first of many morning meals.

Later, maybe we will hike down to Waipi’o Valley to be with the velvety lusciousness of this place. Or, perhaps we will hear the power of Akaka falls and imagine swimming at its feet.

When the clouds part, a soft shore may emerge and invite us to recharge by the warmth of the sun.

I am here to connect, to be with the heart, with possibility and with reality. I am here to remember that things are not always as I’ve made them in my feeble mind.

When the time is right; when all has been said and I’m left only with what is felt, I will cast dreams into the ocean and watch them drift out, tiny and bobbing into the vastness.

I am so grateful.

If you’ve also got a serious case of the feels (for all the reasons)

 

Floating on a raft in the Gulf

I wasn’t exactly terrified in this moment, but how perfect for illustration purposes?

Anyone else been feeling it lately?

I’ve been waking up in the night wrestling with fear – my least favorite feel. It’s the usual suspects: money, livelihood, housing, Trump. Nothing seems settled. Nothing seems sure. In these moments it’s like I’m on a flimsy inflatable pool raft (bought on sale at the local CVS), floating in the middle of a dark, formidable and very deep ocean. There is no one around. It’s nighttime. How will small frantic me ever get back to the sunny, inhabited shore? There’s not even a paddle.

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Unraveling oppression and white privilege starts here

Me and Dad

Me and Dad

“But all our phrasing—race relations, racial chasm, racial justice, racial profiling, white privilege, even white supremacy—serves to obscure that racism is a visceral experience, that it dislodges brains, blocks airways, rips muscle, extracts organs, cracks bones, breaks teeth. You must never look away from this. You must always remember that the sociology, the history, the economics, the graphs, the charts, the regressions all land, with great violence, upon the body.” Ta-Nehisi Coates, Between the World and Me

Racism is about bodies.

It is a visceral reality that can be tasted, seen and felt.

And yet, as I devoured Ta-Nehisi Coates, Between the World and Me, where the physicality of discrimination is honestly and vividly conveyed, I felt a curiosity arise in my own body. As a bi-racial girl who grew up in Utah, what was my physical experience of racism? The violence, ineffective schools and codes of the streets Coates describes of the Baltimore neighborhood of his youth, was not my reality. I grew up in an upper-middle-class white neighborhood. I was a cheerleader. Neighbors brought over bunts and peanut brittle during the holidays.

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It’s right to be so, so, deliciously wrong

 

Rilke Dragons Princesses

As I write this Nicki Minaj’s Feeling Myself is playing through my brainwaves.

I’ve been workin’ on my bounce friends.

It’s been the only way to be with all the ‘muchness’ this year has uncovered. My bounce is where I celebrate and where I lament. It is the place I come to drop out of my head and simply be in the moment, in the feeling.

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The reality of a Trump presidency

 

Dictator Trump

I woke at 4:00 a.m. today and lay in bed paralyzed, unable to face a new reality, unable to will myself back to the comforts of the dream world.

I’ve bounced between text messages, Facebook posts and news reports hoping for some light to alleviate this unfathomable outcome, some comforting word to assure me that Trump really can’t inflict the damage of which he appears so capable.

The end of Roe vs Wade?
The end of marriage equality?
The end of Obamacare?
The end of climate acknowledgment?
The end of Freedom of the Press?
The end of equal rights for Muslims?

Surely, there must be some check, some balance, some other body who’s really pulling the strings? We will not regress into some good ol’ boy nation where the haves keep having regardless of the effects on people and planet. But with a Senate and House Republican majority, I have little hope in the powers that be and the course they will set.

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Notes from Fiji and Australia

October danced a strange and exotic combination that moved quickly. I’m just now catching my breath.

Two birthday cakes

My friend Sophie and I share a birthday. It was one big cheerful party with, naturally, two cakes.

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