Time doesn’t move in a straight line. It doesn’t have a consistent speed. It’s a much more complicated story problem.
You know you know what I mean.
Time lurches in wicked, glue-stained inches, or fierce cannon shots. Convulsive. Cataclysmic.
Life lines curve like puddles, like arteries. They are mud-bound or airborne. Trees become forests in the blink of a side eye. People become fortresses, with blinking blind eyes, buried under layers of strangled narrative.
Humanity is at The Stake. Long held identity markers – race, gender, religion, politics – are dissolving. The paradigms are sorely in need of being burned to the ground and rebuilt. It’s not easy. But it’s right. And we didn’t really sign on for easy. We are being called and called again. It’s the price of admission to humanity.
In order to keep the containers of our bodies and lives clear, flexible, and strong enough to carry it all around, we have to be discerning about what nourishment we take in and what we let move through our digestive systems. We have to be disciplined, and thoughtful enough, to maintain strength and alignment. Strength around alignment. We have to learn how to process information, formulate ideas, strengthen convictions, ask questions, do our due diligence, execute on the basics, prioritize our health, and lift our voices.
So we can stand up for what we love.
Here are some things I’m using to soldier up. They might help you too.
A Race is a Nice Thing to have by Janet E. Helms
After Dylan Roof shot nine people in a South Carolina church during their prayer service, I needed to stop spinning and distill my voice and actions. As a white person who is as guilty of perpetuating racism as any other white person, consciously or not, I feel responsible for rising above the guilt and excuses to legitimate understanding. I found this book. It’s short and smart. It lays out the stages of white racial identity formation and has an actual call to action. Janet Helms implores white people to learn about our history and culture so we can rebuild ourselves to have a non-racist white identity. And since South Carolina, the atrocities continue to pile up in inexcusable ways. Please, save the people. #blacklivesmatter
The History of White People by Nell Irvin Painter
So, because of Ms. Helms’ sage advice about history, I read this book. It starts in tribal Europe and ends in “post-racial” America. I learned many things. Mainly, the depth of fallacy that is the social construct of race and it’s history of shoddy, mistaken concepts that led to its acquisition and elevation by a very select number of wealthy voices who stood to benefit financially. Among many other interesting moments of history that haven’t made general knowledge. I also sent my spit to 23andme.com and found out my genetic make up. True lineage. It’s a start.
Critical Race Theory: An Introduction by Jean Stefancic and Richard Delgado
Due diligence. It’s important to know what people are already doing to solve a problem so we don’t have to reinvent the wheel. We have to give up the hubris that we have original ideas and clarify our intellectual lineage as well as our genetic one. Let our ideas and actions expound on the hard work of those who came before us. It’s an act of gratitude and humility.
The Small Backs of Children by Lidia Yuknavitch
Because holy shitballs her writing is like a primal scream. Her words paint the hunger and the hunt, they burrow into your throat and guts and remind you, with artistic savvy for miles, what it means to be human, to be embodied, to be messy and so full of ardor it’s hard to breathe. Read everything she’s written. Fiction written like this is more truthful than facts. Here is the LA Book Review.
Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit
Feminism. Hilarity. Horror. Inspiration. Women who think you might be “too much” *ahem* – this is for you. For all of us.
Die Wise: A Manifesto for Sanity and Soul by Steven Jenkinson
Facing the reality of death is one of the key factors to living meaningfully. Jenkinson breathes peace and consideration. This book is a brilliant reminder that we are bookended, that the great avoidance for the infinite unknown, the great castles we build in order to extend life versus understanding our deaths, means we miss a great deal of connection to what it means to be here, the exquisite mystery that connects, rather than isolates us.
You guys. In my four years of health coaching I have yet to find a supplement that really walks its talk and makes me feel proud (instead of greasy) enough to represent. After spending several hours on the phone with the founder and a month putting the vitamins into my own body, I have joyfully signed on to be an ambassador for Life Equals. I am in love with the Women’s Multi, the Omega 3s, and the Probiotic. Instant, sustainable, food-based energy. Besides their “for purpose” startup model where they donate one-for-one to Vitamin Angels, they rely on high-quality ingredients and the thoughtful selection of ambassadors that they take incredibly inclusive care of. I’m pretty honored to be chosen. And their generosity to me extends to you. If you want to try them out, you can visit their site. Please let me know if you have questions.
So. The revolution. It requires your awareness and your attention.
Are you ready? Do you feel strong enough?
I’m ready. Of course, some days I feel stronger than others. But it’s on and I am committed to being wherever I’m called, with all of my heart.
I hope you will too.
And remember, I’m here to help. It would be a pleasure to be the catalyst for your highest potential to participate. Whatever that might look like for you. It may look like art and activism, it may look like not being a dick. Or not raising kids who are dicks. It might look like learning how to nap, or say no.
It definitely looks like crowding out the clutter, the excess heaviness, the distractions, and clarifying your strength.
It definitely looks like comfort in your own skin, like ownership of the amount of space you’re taking up in the world. Your privilege and your oppression. It looks like a life that nourishes you so that you can nourish others.
You are stronger than you think.