We’re all strangers connected by what we reveal, what we share, what we take away—our stories. I guess that’s what I love about books—they are thin strands of humanity that tether us to one another for a small bit of time, that make us feel less alone or even more comfortable with our aloneness, if need be.
– Libba Bray
Just started reading Daniel Siegel’s “The Whole-Brain Child.” Highly recommend, so far. Co-author Tina Payne Bryson. What has grabbed me so far is the gravity of attunement – “how we connect deeply with another person and allow them to feel felt.” When we are in tune with each other, we are joined together. And isn’t that the whole point? Also why I love reading books and blogs. I feel connected to you, dear reader. Just as I feel connected to these poets and thinkers.
Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.
– Audre Lorde
I recently finished listening to two Marianne Williamson workshops on Audible. She’s a teacher of “A Course in Miracles” and has a sort of Buddhist/Christian/12-Step perspective that is appealing to this believer without a church. She talks much about how we have to live in the resurrection. That Christ died for our sins, we are all one, and we need to stop crucifying ourselves. All our interactions should be with love and forgiveness. The way we treat ourselves IS a political/social/spiritual statement. When we abuse our bodies, we are acting in self-hate, punishing ourselves or accepting that we don’t deserve better. But what happens when we act in self-love, care for our minds, bodies, relationships, homes, etc. in a way that has no guilt, shame, or hate. It’s revolutionary. It’s as Audre Lorde puts it, political warfare. People can’t stand it and it ruffles feathers all around you. Try it.
For the first time, on the road north of Tampico,
I felt the life sliding out of me,
a drum in the desert, harder and harder to hear.
I was seven, I lay in the car
watching palm trees swirl a sickening pattern past the glass.
My stomach was a melon split wide inside my skin.
“How do you know if you are going to die?”
I begged my mother.
We had been traveling for days.
With strange confidence she answered,
“When you can no longer make a fist.”
Years later I smile to think of that journey,
the borders we must cross separately,
stamped with our unanswerable woes.
I who did not die, who am still living,
still lying in the backseat behind all my questions,
clenching and opening one small hand.
– Naomi Shihab Nye