the practice: digesting and integrating loneliness

horoscope offering for this week from the CHANI app:
“When I am lonely, I ask how I might serve others. When I feel isolated, I focus on the quality of each interaction. When I am lost in a spiral of self-pity, I recognize the bounty that surrounds me by naming everything I’m grateful for.”

“Just because you feel grief or sadness after making a decision, doesn’t mean you made the wrong one.” – Amanda E. White, @TherapyforWomen via @latinxgrief on IG.

“Existence has its moments.”- via @patsysibley on IG.

“…while I sometimes resist the work of writing, I resist my own psychic suffering more, and writing has become for me a primary means of digesting and integrating my experiences and thereby reducing the pains of living… There is no pain in my life that has not been given value by the alchemy of creative attention.” – Melissa Febos, Body Work

“The truth is that creativity occurs in clusters… It can be argued that successful art is built on successful friendships. It can certainly be said that friends are what enable an artist to go the distance.” – Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way Everyday

my heart feels weak, literally. over the past few years, i’ve had chronically low blood pressure, which although preferable to high, comes with its challenges:
– i black out very easily, especially going from a low to high position, which can make getting into a yoga flow pretty difficult
– my heart often starts racing for no apparent reason
– taking a hot bath can feel like a precarious endeavor
– when i get out of bed to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, this can cause my heart to race and make it nearly impossible to get back to bed (often for a couple of hours)

it’s strange, getting older and my body changing. in the naivete of my youth, i had this sense that how life was was set in stone. and i felt oppressed by this idea.
but as i age, i realize with more gravity the ways in which nothing can be held onto for very long. and learning that appreciating things for what they are in the moment is truly the secret sauce of life.
(and also so freaking challenging. i guess that’s why they say retrospect is 20/20..)

if it wasn’t already clear, i don’t really know what my purpose here, today, on the page is. i provided the quotes above, because they are some of the messages guiding me in this iteration of my life.

other things that have been on my mind:
– money (god, fucking money..)
– environmental collapse
– the dynamics of solo poly
– loneliness (my own experience of it, and others’)
– my desire to read more and the ways my reading periods tend to come in waves
– an intentional cannabis practice and cannabis justice
– my relationship with the trees and the land..

loneliness is an interesting one, because it’s not solved simply by the presence of others…
in my experience, it’s a strong desire to be seen and felt by another, for my existence to be validated and my life shared.

i went into nature this past weekend in the hope that communing with the land would alleviate my loneliness.
unfortunately, in the vastness of the earth, seeing far and wide with little to no humans for miles, it had the opposite effect — i was able to feel more viscerally my loneliness (and desperately wanted to get away from it).

this makes me think of Buddhist and Yoga teachings, and the general sense that we navigate our lives distracting with the best of our ability from our deepest pains, our most unfathomable wounds..
being alone with the land, i was able to hold more space for being both alone and part of.
and see with more clarity that my loneliness is a product of my trying to avoid the hardest truths of existence, which is that none of this lasts.
and yet, i am still called to appreciate every second of it.

i was reminded yet again that salvation is in surrender, in no longer trying to fix or avoid..
yet as much as i can feel this truth, i am still coming up against a lifetime of practicing avoidance.. i still have the narrative stored in my body that feeling certain emotions, especially intensely, is not safe and could actually destroy me.

i have rarely been modeled rituals and processes around feeling deeply hard emotions, or cathartic release.

something i have gained over the past year or two is the evolving understanding that emotions want to move through me — sadness is not trying to set up camp, happiness is not moving in.
these emotional experiences are energy moving through my body, my being. to teach, to guide, to nurture, to warn, and then to move on.

well, i’m running out of steam on my musings.

i would offer a prayer, but instead, i’m going to repeat the CHANI offering from up above cause it’s worth repeating:

“When I am lonely, I ask how I might serve others. When I feel isolated, I focus on the quality of each interaction. When I am lost in a spiral of self-pity, I recognize the bounty that surrounds me by naming everything I’m grateful for.”

i wish y’all the best on your journey today. maybe we remember every day is precious, sacred, and an opportunity to practice.**
**which doesn’t mean it’s not hard, terrible, heartbreaking, or unbearable at times. to paraphrase a previous mentor of mine, “we’re meant to feel every emotion, darling.”

(lol, well i guess i ended up offering a prayer anyway)

love y’all
❤ ❤ ❤

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