The path to my snow spiral labyrinth was erased in places, as was the spiral itself. Snow and wind. Drifts.
Beginning to walk the spiral – there was barely a hint of a path. It felt like beginning again.
I could sometimes make out an edge and follow along, placing my snow shoe up against a ridge to re-draw the path.
Sometimes there was nothing by white deep drifting for a long section, but looking ahead, I could see the old path and then I would cut a new(ish) trail to meet up with the tracings of the old one.
The centre spot where I stop to rest and pray was entirely drifted in. I walked it flat again and stood awhile.
By the time I walked back OUT of the spiral, the outer ring was almost erased again by the wind.
As I walked home, the tracks I had left an hour earlier were barely visible and I could feel the wind erasing the spiral behind me.
I am back to work on Sanctuary. The novel I began so many years ago and … walked away from… when I took the job with the Family Health Team.
I am re-tracing there too.Trying to find the old path, or cut a new one.
Step by step, I make my way through this glorious life.
Stay cozy ~p
Hopping online because I am bursting to share this book with you. In this time of uncertainty and stress, many of us are diving even deeper to our practices of self-reflection and this book has given me solace and challenged me to do some deep thinking about what I do and what I DESIRE to do in the world.
I just finished reading Jennifer Louden’s new book, Why Bother? Discover the Desire for What’s Next.
You know that feeling when you finish a book and your eyes are full of tears and your heart is entirely full of, “Yes. Yes, I remember now. Thank you for reminding me.” That is what I feel right now.
I was given the great blessing of being able to read a copy of Why Bother before it is released to the public. I am grateful and so honoured to join to the chorus of voices singing the praises of this book and of Jennifer’s work in the world.
This book is both good medicine and an excellent companion.
This book is so many precious things wrapped up in one beautiful, wise, package.
But wait…there’s more!
There are also a ton of online resources included as links in the body of the book itself and a crazy heap of bonuses for those who pre-order.
The launch date for the book is April 21, 2020
You can find the info here: https://jenniferlouden.com/why-bother/
We will stay here and see what comes.
I attended Jennifer Louden’s Masterclass last night. It was great to see her so excited about sharing her thoughts on the top three hidden fears that keep us from doing our work in the world – the work we so deeply desire to do.
Jen gave us all a wonderful worksheet to fill in after the class in order to help us explore our own hidden fears and solidify some of the wise ways that she has discovered to deal with these fears and to begin to pursue the things we desire.
These desires run the gamut from:
Whatever it is that falls into that place of:
I keep saying I want to do — but I never get around to it, or am entirely UNABLE to do it!
I love that she ended the worksheet with a challenge for us to share OUT LOUD what we will do this week to show ourselves that our desires matter.
Here’s what I’m gonna do.
This week, I will show myself that my desires matter by taking time each evening to do the following:
And hey – if you find this whole thing intriguing but weren’t able to come to the masterclass last night. Here’s a link to the GSSD Masterclass REPLAY.
Go easy ~p
PS – Todoist is a new app I am trying out to keep track of … all the stuff I want/need to do each day. I’ve used reminders and I always have my trusty Bullet Journal – but I wanted to give this app a try.
I am getting so excited!
I will be serving as a coach for Jennifer Louden’s upcoming seven week course on Getting Your Scary Sh*t Done.
Most of you know by now that I spend some time every week with Jen at The Writer’s Oasis. I love and appreciate her work (and support) so much and now I get to work alongside her to support others who want to dive in and get to work on a new or ongoing project.
I will be serving as a coach and I will also be working through the course myself as I prepare to begin a new novel.
There is still time to sign up and Jen is offering a free masterclass on Monday Sept 23 where you can learn more about the course. I will be there and the adventure will begin!
Click the link below to check it out!
Yes. I am still alive. Still here, though I have been silent for a long long LOOOOOONG time. So long that I don’t even really remember how to DO this.
But here I am. I’ve an urge to begin blogging again and so – what better time than tonight, as I teeter on the cusp of a new story. It’s 8:04 PM and I am out in the Writing Burrow. The 3 Day Novel Contest begins at midnight. I’ve been excited about this year’s adventure for a few months, but tonight I am gripped with fear.
Here I am again with no real outline and just a character and I am afraid that there won’t be a way forward. Though, there always is. That is the deepest joy of this weekend for me. Just letting the words flow out onto the page. Side-stepping, faking out and sometimes even body-slamming my inner-critic into submission. BOOM!
The day spun by me as I cleaned and prepped the new Writing Burrow. Isn’t it a beauty?
I also got a sweet new haircut from the Raggedy Man. That’s how we roll.
I cooked up a vat of Hot n Sour soup, chopped some veggies and fruit for easy hand to mouth action and baked some chicken breasts to gnaw on. There is also plenty of dark chocolate, coffee, herbal tea, juices and water on hand.
I am ready.
I will chat with my pals over in the 3 Day Novel CHATzone and sip some tea and watch the sky darken.
At midnight, I will begin.
By midnight on Monday – I will have a new novella to play with.
Wish me luck!
PS: This is the fortune I got today in an ancient cookie. I think it bodes well…
As some of you know, I’ve been hanging out with Jennifer Louden over at the OASIS for a while now. I just passed into my second year as a member and I am still loving up the space that Jen creates and holds for us and her most excellent, gentle, way of leading us down fascinating paths of inquiry.
Our theme for October is “Make Room for Magic”
Mmmmm – isn’t that delicious?
I sat out on the step this morning thinking about magic and what it means to me these days. What I think it IS.
I’ve always liked Starhawk’s definition of magic in The Spiral Dance: “the art of sensing and shaping the subtle unseen forces that flow throughout the world.” Though I lean more to the sensing these days than the shaping.
I feel magic in the moments of… expanded consciousness… that come with the remembering/seeing again how radically inter-connected everything is. I say “radically” because I think that this way of seeing is radical. We humans tend, so much to FORGET this inter-connectedness as we cling to our individuality.
As I sat and considered how I invite magic into my life these days, I realized that it is with my meditation practice. Vipassana. The noticing of the sensations and the constant flux of these sensation. Always changing changing changing. And the joy I feel in the noticing and, even more so, in the lack of needing to CHANGE anything myself — by any type of act of will. Right now, anyhow.
I see that I block magic by…getting “busy” with work that is not creative (and/or challenging) and by sliding into my old shadow comfort of tooooooo muuuuuuuch television 🙂 The things that take me away from… simple mindfulness.
Jen asked us to think about the last time we experienced magic in our lives. What happened and what it felt like.
I wrote this lil ditty in response…
Seeing the sandhill cranes yesterday—a pair of them standing in a marshy spot just off the road.
That flash of red over their eyes—like a brushstroke—shifted the entire world for me
into the most glorious painting.
Like I could see it—more clearly. Just for a moment.
And then, I spoke to tell you that I had seen them
and the spell was broken.
But the beauty stayed with me awhile.
—the colour of the leaves.
—the road ahead of us freshly paved and painted with yellow lines.
The way the water lay on the river when we pulled into the yard
home from our travels.
I look forward to inviting more magic into my life this month by…
NOTICING the beauty of this place I am so fortunate to live in.
I will take some long walks up the lane and at least one into the bush along a trail, just to notice.
May your month be filled with magic as well.
Go easy ~p
I will take life and say, “yes” to it this week…
By returning again and again to the breath filling my lungs
By noticing the transitions, the “between” times
Returning again and again to the awareness that as my life is flowing along
—a stream of time, of movement, of happenings, of encounters—
that there are moments when a twitch of my fins can send me down a channel that I choose.
That I have the chance to choose
—again and again and again—
instead of being simply pulled along by the current.
I will take life and say yes to it this week
I cannot settle to the work today.
The Fears have me by the throat.
Fear of Not Enough –
not enough money
not enough talent
not enough brains to save
myself from drowning
from the voices that cry out again and again and again
that I am not
I cannot settle to the work today
but Desire has me by the heart
and she whispers a question,
“Good enough for what?
To breathe this soft air, like the old man in the sea?”
Yesterday, I sat on the sun hot shore drawing pictures in my book of people selling oysters from wheelbarrows, offering silver and wooden carvings, woven bracelets, paintings and clothes, sticks of candied apples and mangoes and shrimp and colourful kites shaped like parachutes with plastic men dangling from them (so much bigger than the poop-a-troopers my sister and I threw off the garage roof at the farm when I was ten). Down the beach, I noticed people walking into the water. The waves were high and loud. They walked in fully clothed. A man in a red plaid shirt and dark shorts. A woman in yellow. Two young boys joined them. They lifted the children above the swells until the boys learned to jump the waves and ride them back to shore.
I kept a running tally in my book as I drew. 2 people, 4, 7.
Now there are eleven.
There are twenty-four people! All fully clothed, standing in groups – ankle deep, knee deep, thigh.
I set aside my book to watch them laughing and shrieking at the cold and chatting in Spanish.
Out with the farthest group, I notice an older man. His grey hair glints in the sun and I see that the guy in the plaid shirt and another man are holding him and, like the couple lifted their boys, these men lift the old man as the waves crest around their chests.
Then the old man stands on his own, knees bent and taking a small jump as each wave comes. The men give him space, but stand by to steady him as he lands. I can’t hear their voices over the crash of the surf, but their joy is clear.
The old man waded back into the shallows on his skinny old man legs, and his family cheered him as he passed. The women reaching out to him. The children taking his hand and walking alongside him to the shore.
And that old man’s face held so much joy that it cracked my heart and let me remember—that these things are free.
The joy in the rushing water.
The solid support of the earth.
The frigate birds riding the breeze.
The curious dog who lay near me on the sand.
The feeling of sun on my skin and the taste of salt
on my lips.
I cannot settle to the work today, and yet—
these words flow out onto the page
and the waves hit the shore
and this soft air
is ours for the taking.
~ La Penita Jaltemba 2.16.17
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I wish I was born a hundred years ago.