Thursday, September 14, 2017

in my love apocalypse...

in my love apocalypse, i stop seeking fame or fortune
in my love apocalypse, i rest in faith and friends
in my love apocalypse, i don't measure my worth in tallies of the masses
in my love apocalypse, what counts is how alive my soul feels
in my love apocalypse, i let go of the energy of push push push
in my love apocalypse, there is truly no reason to rush (except, when there truly is)
in my love apocalypse, i stop giving myself away to dissociative experiences
in my love apocalypse, i embrace a self love that's fearless
in my love apocalypse, i nap way more often
in my love apocalypse, i take way more baths
in my love apocalypse, my business ins't about transactional winnings and losings
in my love apocalypse, it's run on straightforward, relational negotiation
in my love apocalypse, i'm brave enough to make art
in my love apocalypse, i do it for the joy
in my love apocalypse, i let my fear and fragility show
in my love apocalypse, i trust that the truth is: i really know what's best for me
in my love apocalypse, we all learn how to suffer better
in my love apocalypse, we all learn how to dance freer
in my love apocalypse, there's less heavy lifting
in my love apocalypse, there's more trusting the mess
in my love apocalypse, i unwind the notion of scarcity
in my love apocalypse, spontaneity runs the show
in my love apocalypse, we breathe in some sanity, and deactivate our drones
in my love apocalypse, there's nowhere to get, nothing to be
in my love apocalypse, everything is truly, truly the way it's meant to be
in my love apocalypse, there's a new idea of holiness--one that lives inside us all--tap tap tap--we wait no longer
in my love apocalypse, we learn to stay longer
in my love apocalypse, my teachers are children, who haven't yet learned the rules
in my love apocalypse, my teachers are elders, who've unleashed themselves from shoulds
in my love apocalypse, we are together and we know it, more than we ever thought we could
in my love apocalypse, there's time to grieve the losses and dive all the way into what's good
in my love apocalypse, we put down the guns we've held to our heads--the shame, the blame, the hate, the pressure
in my love apocalypse, kindness is a worthy measure
in my love apocalypse, we don't need reminders to breathe
in my love apocalypse, there are places we can just be

what about you, friend? let's pretend friday is the end of the world as we know it. when i think about that, i can't help but break a smile. what are you letting go of? what ways do you dare to begin anew, truly?

i, for one, will be changing my business model (for real this time), and quitting social media (i just can't do it AND feel like i'm not putting on a show. not now).

violence, truth, love... you know

With every ounce of suffering I'm experiencing, I feel like I'm growing entire limbs of empathy. I bought myself a slice of cake tonight. I don't even like cake. But I felt really rebellious and childlike buying it, and when you've had knots in your stomach and knives in your throat for 48 hours solid, cake matters.

Alexander is my heart music. Like, when I want to sway in my room and cry, he's the one. This song was the only thing that could loosen my ice-cold heart today. Half-lotioned, half-clothed, hair wet, (finally showered), I cranked this song as loud as it would go and let my stomach hang as free as possible. I felt like I was carrying a child of grief inside me. And I danced. Wailed for like, 7 seconds. Then finished getting dressed and left for work.

I came home and landed on my roommates' couch where two sweet hearts snuggled mine for a bit. And finally, I found words for all the sadness that's been welling up within me. They bumbled out through tears:

Him caring more about having his desires met than my sense of safety or health... it's not just selfish, it's violent

Demand is truly the root of violence. "Or else" energy. Force, in order to get what you want. Tantrums, out lashes, threats, manipulative words... they're all pens of... violence.

But when I remain voiceless or act powerless, that's its own form of violence, too. It's an internalized force; a contracting of self so that I'm more agreeable, and therefore, in my mind more lovable. Compliance is my contribution to the equation...

Demand + Compliance = Violence 

It truly takes two.

I'm going to talk to him, I told them. One roommate responded, I'm more lazy. I'd just kick him to the curb.

But he's not an idiot, I said. He's not evil. He's just asleep. And I'm going to tell him what truly happens to me when he's so demanding. And also draw the line. Because I can't put myself through this shit. It's not healthy.

After which I stumbled into a rant on healing societal ills one person and relationship at a time.

Maybe hurt is inevitable. Yes. Of course. Death happens. Tragedy happens. SHIT happens. But mortality and violence are two different things. Let's not pretend like they're the same damn thing.

Violence is a symptom of societal ill. And yes, I'm sure society's always had its ills, but who are we to toss the towel in on healing? If not the whole fucking society, at least ourselves? Our families? Our relationships? The people we spend our waking hours with? The people we claim to love? 

Can we at least take on the practice of increasing compassion in our personal lives, and waking up to the ways that we're violent?--To ourselves, our communities, our friends and loves?

It swirled like a tsunami so strongly through the room that one roommate said he needed to take a nap. Ha!

how to be depressed**

1. Spend all your time on Facebook.
2. Read and reread old texts, trying to decipher what went wrong, when, and what might happen next.
3. Deprive yourself of your basic energy boosts like healthy food, exercise and INTERACTION WITH NICE PEOPLE.
4. Read blogs about how to be successful.
5. Spend a shit ton of money you don't have.
6. Look at a screen most of the day.

Hello friends,

I've had a revelation. I've been teetering on the edge of exhaustion/depression/totally losing my shit for the past, oh, 8 months (around the time I realized my marriage was ending). I'm reaching the point where I can no longer try to hold myself together.

I feel like one of those stuffed animals in Toy Story that sits still (ie--meets everyone's expectations) when humans are in the room, and comes to life (ie--is not what the humans think) behind closed doors.

It's its own form of torture. I want to just let myself live behind the closed door for a while, not having to stiffen up when someone walks in the room. Or realistically speaking, I want to be more real, whatever room I'm in. Or more plainly stated: I want to be allowed to be depressed. Okay... I want to be depressed. Okay.. I AM depressed. And I don't want to fight it/hide it anymore.

But because I've got deep rooted shit around keeping it together in front of an audience (don't we all?) I'm going to give myself the real space to disappear into my metaphorical 13-year-old bedroom until I actually feel like I can sincerely walk out into the world feeling alive and positive.

**by depressed i mean, more sad than you're used to for longer periods of time than you're used to. i'm not speaking in clinical terms. i have no training for that. but this shit might still help.

1. give a head's up, in writing, to your friends and family, inclusive of deep gratitude for taking you as you are these days... a totally imperfect and beautiful human who's just going through some shit. after all, you're depressed. connection HELPS. do a tiny bit of pre-work to make connection easier.
2. identify a bitching partner. someone you can call up for 5 minute cries, complaints, or frozen-still attacks. do not abuse this person's generosity.
1. stop asking, "where is the space for my depression?"--that's like asking, "where is the space for my breath?" there is no such thing as not enough space. space is infinite, always. you choose to walk into it, or not.
2. don't pretend you're happy when you're not. be with the truth. let it engulf you until it falls away. full-body experiences always eventually fall away.
3. give yourself permission to stop trying so hard. work from a place of humble hazy intuition, instead of push, push, push.
4. make your art. share it. humans are exhausted by trying to make summer last year-round. trust that your blanket of white winter snow is more needed than you think, than you could ever imagine.
5. forget that you're a healer (or whatever you are). just show up and do what you know how to do in your bones, because even in all this muck of depression, you still really like doing X.
6. let yourself be healed. where are your books? your movies? your coaches? your favorite sweater? your favorite soaps? where is your manifesto about what really fucking sucks right now? and where is your follow-up release?
7. remember that life is long. so so long. nothing lasts forever. that's what got you into this spiral from the get-go. (something major ended, no? the love you thought would last, the life, the inspiration). not even this will last.
8. did i mention to take care of yourself? for every caring output, i dare you to do a caring input. you know that this is needed. don't want to care for yourself? too tired? here's a 3 sentence e-mail to send to all your friends: dear friends, i'm so much more depressed than i'm prepared to admit. will you bring me dinner, send me texts, call me, or lay in bed with me while i cry sometime in the next two weeks? i love you. i really need it. thanks. ps--i can't even believe i'm sending this e-mail, but this blog told me to, so i am.
9. say "bless you" to your dear and terrorizing resistance. how far you've been from understanding humanity. how much closer you're getting with each spout of anxious doubt.
10. close the damn laptop and cry already. don't go 80%. the trouble with committing 80% to your depression is it's never really satisfied. it lingers far too long on facebook's homepage, a crush's photo page, and 1,000 sad love songs. CLOSE IT. CRY.
11. take a month off for 100% commitment to being with your shit. (or a week, or a weekend). book yourself a room. no facebook allowed. you and i both know, you've earned it.
12. potential financial losses? worth getting your power back.
13. potential work set back? worth getting your passion back.
14. plus, investing in your mental health is a consistent positive feedback loop. period.
15. look your shit straight in the eye like a deep, true love. it is, more than either of us know. yet.
16. create a culture of acceptance around sadness. you're not the only one suffering from no place to put it. make a box for the local coffee shop/library/bookstore/bar: "a place to put your sadness" with little slips of paper. every week, collect the sheets. burn them. say a prayer.
17. buy yourself flowers and fresh fruits and veggies. constant reminders that things are born anew in beauty.
18. ask yourself for forgiveness. you know what for.
19. write your thank you letters. and your forgiveness letters. no pressure to mail them, just extra joy if you do.
20. watch the movie short bus. it'll give you hope. promise.
21. don't hold onto your depression. okay--now that you're really embracing your feelings, let them be in their truest state: fleeting, momentary, here & gone. do NOT build an identity around being depressed. it is only an open door for more torture and pain. really. you're suffering plenty. promise.
22. instead, let the tiny flickers of light be your truth. in the dark, there is still ____. what's light where you are? what beauty do you still have eyes for seeing, even in your lowest spots?
22. don't postpone joy. you've gotten so used to the dark, that you might easily close your eyes to a bright flashing light in your face! don't postpone joy, sweet friends. answer that call with rapid fire speed. we all need relief. we all deserve exhaling tender laughs.
23. read any of these books as if they're wise sages sitting under a tree, imparting quiet knowing or your tired, seeking soul: tantra by osho, anatomy of the spirit by caroline myss, peace is every step by thich nhat hanh (and whatever else people recommend in the comments below).
24. bonus for the healers: tell your clients, with love, where you are and what you can and cannot do. in my case, i'll be sending a gentle e-mail to all my clients with the following stated: dear lovely clients, i just want to send a heads-up that i'll be practicing what i preach of truly being invested in my process for the next while. i'll be creating public art and honestly expressing where i am. where am i? well, i'm kinda depressed. that said, you be the test of whether you feel it, or not, in our coaching. clients have been reporting to me lately that it's the best coaching they've ever received from me. i've been feeling more present than ever to my clients. and in the dark, coaching feels like the most beautiful light i have! so all this to say--worry not if i look exceptionally dark in art and expression. it's healing and powerful for me. thanks. i love you. i know you really get it.
25. be a freak. it's fine. we knew all along. most of us are too busy worrying about keeping our inner-freaks in the closet to notice, anyway. let her out. you'll be doing a service to the world, showing that we can be both sad and powerful, honest and humble, tired and transformative... or sometimes, not. and that's okay, too.

Marry Young, Divorce Young: The Conglomerate Conversation I've Had with 100 Doubters

for brian, who's still my partner in doing things differently, who I still love to the moon and back.

"I always tell people it's a bad idea to marry young!" he says, after inquiring about my wedding tattoo and discovering that I'm divorced. "So I guess THAT was a mistake!"

"Nope. Not at all. It was a great idea. We wanted to celebrate our love. We believed in ourselves, each other." I'm a little smug on the subject, to be honest, deflecting so often the assumption that I regret my decision to marry.

"Well now it's gotta suck, doesn't it?!"

"Nah. Not really. We kept it real. Called it what it was when we didn't want each other anymore. Split up so we could stay in love."


"He's a great guy. It didn't end perfectly. It never does.  But I wanted him to be happy. And he wanted me to be happy. And we knew it meant breaking up. Hard as fuck, but it's how we still love each other. We're not together, slowly making each other miserable."

"So it was a mutual break? That easy?"

"Uhh, not exactly..."

The conversation continues. Confusion ensues. In the end, we land here:

"Dude, basically, when you go all in, you get a lot of results. Wonderful, hard, easy, scary, memorable, human results. When you go half way, you get a lot of regrets. Anxious, unsettled, wishful, mournful regrets. We married. We divorced. We celebrated. We grieved. We both moved on. Faster than we would've if we were still half-assing our way through shit, too afraid to be real with ourselves and each other about our honest-to-god desires. I feel seriously accomplished to be 26 and divorced. Like...YEAH, BABY--GOT THAT UNDER MY BELT!"

We chuckle. "Better you than me."

"Psssh. Better this than that."


"I'll take results over regrets any day."

"But a lot of them suck."

"But nothing lasts forever, either way."

"I dunno, girl. I couldn't deal with the shame... my family, my community, everyone there as I make this huge promise. And then telling them I failed?"

"So you'd rather never go for anything?"

"Not the shit I'm not sure of."

"No one gets married thinking they're gonna get divorced. I thought I was sure. Shit happens. Nothing's sure."


"ONE CIGARETTE AT A TIME. Just kidding. I basically slept for a year."

"I don't have time for that."

"Yeah. There's not a lot of societal space to be a really alive human in this world. But then again, it's possible. You just have to stop worrying about looking good. And then you start developing all kindsa crazy faith... Start discovering that having the rug pulled out from under you doesn't actually kill you. It's weird and relieving."

"But how do you know that you'll get your shit back together?"

"You don't. You just HOPE. Or you just STOP HOPING and see what happens. It's really fucking humbling."


"Oh my god, you're the best, I love you, let's hug."

The end.

Your Life is Your Art: A Manifesto

the story, unfolding, as if told from far away

Welcome to my life story starting from the week before Burning Man, up until the present-ish, as if told from the future. This is really the only way I'll ever be able to bare coming out. As what? A non-denominational all-inclusive Lover. Society may call me "queer". Or "bisexual". Or "polyamorous". I wouldn't disagree with any of those labels. But the fact that we have to label our loving just goes to show how terrified we are of it. And with good reason. It is incredibly potent stuff. This is the story of mine. It's long. I didn't write it to be easily digestible or retweetable or whatever. I wrote it to be art. Full and honest and deep. And I'm sharing it to be of service. In case you want to nestle into a rich story that doesn't cut corners on the details and real context of shedding shame and falling into love.

This is a photograph from early August of 2013, just after I moved all my crap out of Brian's parent's basement. The crap was, more specifically, the contents of a life we had built together over six long beautiful years in union. Love letters, bed sheets, frying pans, mugs. We boxed up the make-shift thrift-store contents of young love, and hauled it all into Bri's parent's basement, as place holder for a normal life we'd never actually return for, then pedaled off onto an eight month bicycle tour around the United States. We were married at the time; full on hope and trust, not yet jaded on love or togetherness.

In the three years time between hauling the crap into the basement, and hauling it out, I watched my life spin out, as if from the perspective of a slow motion tornado. Everything around me swirled and ripped into shreds of people and places, jobs and lovers, hair colors and housemates. Millions of miles later, my core began to watch as the body around it also spun out. Even my casing had to go. Even my body was demolished and rebuilt.

I didn't know it then, on that day the picture was taken, but I was at the end of a particular era of hauling. I was about to let go more massively than I could imagine; move away from my wounded and wanting adolescence, and into my soulful and sensual womanhood.

A week after this photograph was taken, I left Washington DC for Portland, Oregon where my best friend Jodi lived. We were scheduled to go to Black Rock City, Nevada for a week-long radical community and expression immersion festival called Burning Man. Jodi found a guy named Jake through Craig's List who was driving an RV down, and we managed to catch a ride with him for $60 each way, each person. Along for the ride was Jake's new girlfriend Sara, and Benja and Jeff, who were a boy-duo akin to the girl-due of Jodi and I: sweetest mushy gushy friends on earth. There were six of us total bouncing around in the Virgin Voyager, and eight rest stops, two RV dance parties, one dry hump, and 20 hours later, we were like spirit-family arrived to the pearly gates of kink-Heaven.

My first time at Burning Man was so magical that I couldn't bare to photograph, or talk much about it after. But the impact was unmistakable: a glorious devious energy saturated my blood and stayed pulsing in my psyche for months after. All of the sudden, I couldn't erase the love. I couldn't undo the sheer freedom, the shameless expression, the fire in me that society had dampened. The can had exploded. Worms were everywhere. There was no collecting them or putting them back in. I became Medusa, crown made of magic snakes. Except with the opposite effect: everyone I met, I melted. Hearts softened and opened into a magma bed of love. 

In the RV on the drive home, we stopped at a biodesiel gas station that carried only organic foods and grew wheatgrass on the roof. It was there, in that anomalous utopian gas station on the side of the highway in Oregon, that I decided I didn't have to go back for the crap I'd been hauling around DC. I didn't belong to that old life anymore. And there was no good reason on God's Glorious Earth to pretend otherwise. It was decided. I would stay in Portland until at least Thanksgiving.

I accidentally relayed this information to my parents in a text message on the day my flight was supposed to arrive home: Rosh Hashana. They didn't talk to me for quite some time, but something about that felt good, too. Like I was old enough and ready enough to break ties, to become my own.

Jodi and Jen's friend Maya had offered me the upstairs playroom of her house as my bedroom, in exchange for watching her daughter about 8 hours a week. It was an excellent deal, considering I was completely penniless and wanted more than anything to stay away from the energetic constipation of Washington DC. Living with Maya meant I'd have the chance to devote myself fully to the art of my work and still be in an environment that felt nurturing. It would also be the second time living with a family in my twenties, and I knew from experience that I liked it. Something about the mixed up ages made me feel like everyone could really exist as themselves--like wherever you were was simply an expression of a stage you were going through, not a mark on your character--and this felt like a strange liberation compared to living with friends. My upbringing happened in a household where divisiveness was the norm. So oddly enough, families felt like a safe place for me to individuate. And that, I did.

I hula hooped alone in my attic-like room almost every day, sometimes to music, sometimes with the dancing trees outside my window baring silent witness to the breeze of my body. I smoked weed a few times a week and wrote poetry or masturbated as if composing a symphony. I read by flashlight at night since the switch to the only light in the room was unreachable if I were to fall asleep while reading. The library was just a 10 minute walk from my house, and my favorite friends at that time were books: The Girl Who Swallowed the Moon, Osho, Miranda July, The Ethical Slut. Besides Jodi, of course. Jodi was my oldest friend--and old, in the context of so much new, felt in some ways more valuable than favorite. 

In that time together, Jodi and I grew close like we'd been in the glory days of our youth. We laid together half-naked on my bed eating almonds and drinking coconut water. We talked about my lovers, her heartbreaks, my work, her school, how broke we both were and how one day we'd be living in a whole other paradigm. An abundant one of wild togetherness, infinite love, deep healing, side-stitched laughter. We were spiritual and societal idealists on constant existential benders, falling into the arms of the other when we spiraled out on hope. It was the kind of friendship that made having such huge hearts feel bearable. "Thank God we have each other," we'd say on constant repeat, as if we wouldn't know where to put all the love or all the sorrow, if the other wasn't there to help hold it. 

Jodi struggled especially in that time, but not as much as before we were reunited. Jodi was a lesbian, and a tender one, at that. But it had been nearly two years since she'd felt true reciprocal love. It seemed like many times throughout our lives, one of us would go first with a lesson, so she could teach the other how to cope when it was her turn. I had just made it through the fire of incessantly falling in love with people who were unavailable, and it was Jodi's turn to go next. The number of basically straight women Jodi had fallen for was less important then the depth of wound it left her. Each time she'd discover that another one of her loves was straight, it was like a chunk of her heart had been shaved off, chopped up, thrown on the grill and then eaten by a black shadow of loneliness. She'd call me and I'd answer to a mousy quiet on the other end. We knew each other's sounds so well, I could hear which quiet meant tired, which meant hungry and which meant heartbroken. Heartbroken was the worst to hear.

I made it my mission to help break her spell, as so many had helped me break mine. In that time, we were exploring anger like a drug neither of us knew well. Both of us more prone to the stillness of sadness, we vowed, together, to experiment with the movement of rage, the force of being fed up, helping each other run hard and fast in the direction of what we actually wanted, as an act of defiance against all the dead ends we'd been slamming into.

For Jodi, we went to lesbian bars, lesbian dance nights, lesbian film screenings, lesbian everythings. I tweeted the lesbian groups for hat tips on the sweetest events. We threw parties inviting all the lesbians we liked from OK Cupid. "We're in this together, Jo. I'm helping you out of this god damn hole. There's a land of abundance. I swear. And I can't wait for you to get there." She'd tell me I was her biggest advocate. But the thing is, she was mine, too.

One late September afternoon, it was a sunny day after a week straight of rain, so we took ourselves on an adventure to the top of Mt. Tabor. I remember thinking that it looked like the air itself was breathing, shimmering and warping with a mystical sort of life, and that surely the fairies were out at play. We brought along our sacks of magic--glitter and glue and guitars and hula hoops. We made movies and did headstands and took beautiful photographs of each other through blades of grass. Our bodies looked young and strong, primal and playful. With my head on Jo's belly, her arm around my neck, I could taste the smell of slightly burnt skin stirred with the depth of the cool lush ground.

After hours of playing in the sun, we wound up at the Waypost in North Portland--a cafe and bar that had nightly music. We ordered the cherry cider, upon the bartender's recommendation, and it was served in wide 20 ounce mason jars for $3 a pop. Jodi's heart was heavy again with too much love, so I came up with a silly art therapy game and we drew and drew and drew at a patio picnic table for hours. This was the way we were together: a constant split between lover, friend, therapist, muse, and artist. The truth was, we liked it. We wanted it all. All those ups and downs of being human. As long as we had each other to feel through it with.

That day was like the cards aligned perfectly for us to dance our advocacy for each other. I had good vibes about the bartender and found out that he was into Tarot. I had my animal cards with me, so at some point when he came by our table to bus some dishes, Jodi spoke up for me, "Do you want an animal card reading by Rach?" she asked. "I'd love one" he excitedly, and before I could blink or object, he was clearing off a space at the bar, inviting me to sit before him. That man, Antonio Bonilla, became one of the greatest loves of my life. 

Later, the opening number for the set had bailed, and Jodi was on the patio strumming her guitar. I asked the band if they wanted her to open for them, and they said yes. Without having the chance to blink or object, I pulled her in from outside, and onto the stage.

We were like everything we didn't have the resources, guts, or permission to be when we were 17--grown-up versions of the seeds we planted as teens: artists, writers, musicians, witches, therapists. There was a secret seed, though, that was also sprouting now--one we didn't realize had been planted, but had clearly been there all along--sex. And right along side it, like it's obvious alter ego sprouted shame.

At 26, we were in that stage of wanting to think we'd shed all the shame about our "othered" identities, but the truth was, we were just beginning. Jodi was further along than I was, traditionally speaking, in terms of being Out. She'd been in conversation with her family since she was about 19. I, on the other hand, had a much more non-conventional approach to my Outness, partially because I was still grappling with what to call all the love I was exploding into, all the boundless label-less amorphous glorious love. And partly because I was enraged that love ever needed explaining at all.

I had fallen in love with and been in relationships with women. I had also been in love with more than one person at a time, and told everyone about everyone else. (Neither of which felt easy to let myself do, initially.) Jodi and I were also in a relationship that confused everyone new who we met. "Best friends don't spoon 3 nights a week," they'd say. "Why not?" I'd retort back. "More love is never bad." But the way I communicated about my love was more or less decided upon, and dependent on my audience. With the actual lover and my close friends, I acted as if nothing was strange about our togetherness (because nothing actually felt strange in my heart). With my parents, I communicated abruptly and abrasively about my relationships (because I didn't want them to have any space to tell me "no"). And in "public" which also meant with most of my extended family, I let the whole thing go silent and invisible (because the truth always felt too vulnerable to reveal). I had a clear act decided upon for each situation. A way to stay safe. A way to guard the love. 

But those acts were old suitcases, becoming tattered, and I was new and sick of carrying them.

It felt symbolic that the only clothes I had with me were what I had brought for Burning Man, and whatever donations Jodi and her housemates passed along to me. I was literally draped in a freak-suit of sorts most days for my first month in Portland. Staples to my wardrobe included cheetah spandex, a skin-tight denim vest, and my silk zebra robe. The only two pairs of shoes I had were a tasseled duo of all-white cowgirl boots, and my apple green low-top Chuck Taylors. Glitter and scrolls were my most trusted currency--I carried them with me everywhere I went. And my video camera was constantly capturing the magic. I was totally broke but had everything I needed, and any time my bank account balance got down below $5, I'd take a screen shot of the statement as a strange form of gratitude. As a way of saying, "Look. This is what it feels like to have no money. You are so fucking blissed out it doesn't even matter."

I could taste my riches in every breath. I didn't give a damn about the future.

But one day at the peak of my pennilessness, I came up with a game I could offer out to my clients--a 30 day challenge course centered all around your aligning your core desires and your actions. Long story short, when you teach, it's pretty much required that you go first. So I figured out that what my heart wanted for 30 days was simple: to stay with love. 

"Love what you have, and you'll have more love" was the Regina Spektor lyrics I scrolled up on a tiny piece of paper and put inside a small glass capsule I wore around my neck. Every day, when I did something that signified "staying with love", I'd add a little bit of gold glitter to the capsule. It was a beautiful idea, but it wasn't until a session with one of my clients, that I realized what I was really doing.

The client had had gastro intestinal bypass surgery, and thus, an extra flap of skin remained around her belly and had been there for decades. She'd spent much of her life hating that skin, trying get rid of it, shame it, shun it out of existence. In our session, we realized that what her body really wanted was emotional support--to invite all of herself back into her tender embrace. To welcome herself home. To love her whole body, unconditionally. 

It may sound strange, but I had closeted part of my heart. And just like my clients' body, every part of my heart was holy. Every part of it was meant to be there, in that upward flowering position, center facing the sun of love, saying, "This pollen is for everyone. This pollen. Come. And. Feast."