Viewing entries in
Living

Finding Stillness

Comment

Finding Stillness

I’ve been thinking a lot about stillness this month. 

IMG_0288.JPG

My life feels like a series of snapshots that end up moving in a chaotic fashion. Every day is pretty structured, but do I ever get time to be still? I mean, really still. With a three year old and a one year old? Most of the time I am keeping up with diapers and deadlines. There’s not much stillness in my life. 

When I chose to do this challenge of knitting strictly from my stash this year, I didn’t realize that it would bring stillness. I haven’t taken great care of my yarn since we’ve moved. I haven’t had time to browse, to smell, to feel the skeins and hanks. In the time I’ve had, I’ve noticed myself going to the closet where my stash is stored and just looking. Admiring. I may have accumulated my stash out of a state of sadness, but each piece still holds a bit of love. Each piece has a purpose. 

I‘ve had many moments of discontent where I wish I had more sweater quantities, more naturally dyed, more fingering weight, more worsted- exc. 

But for the most part, I love my stash. I love the opportunity to make something beautiful out of nothing. That was probably the point of all the purchases in the first place. In my postpartum haze, I needed something tangible to create. To show that I have purpose. 

That’s what we find in the stillness. After the anxiety, the disappointment, and discontent fade away there is our purpose. We belong just because we exist. Nothing more. We can create something magical out of the loose threads of our lives. 

It’s agony for me to slow down and be still. I continuously want to move forward- to find success in busyness. I’ve never found success in that. So I must learn to be still. 

IMG_0225.JPG

Comment

2018 Intentional Word: Practice.

Comment

2018 Intentional Word: Practice.

2018 is going to be the year of Practice. 

I have plenty of goals, enough to drag me down into an existential panic. I think, however, these goals are going to be good for me. There will need to be a large amount of self control practiced this year, which is why I have chosen this word for my intention. 

Practice in reading: If I am going to hit my book goal and finish the Read Harder Challenge, like I want to, but fail desperately every year, then I need to keep it in my practice. 

Practice in writing: The only way to become a better writer is to keep writing. The only way to get my words out is to stretch my horizons and do things I have only dreamt of. 

Practice in knitting: I am already a pretty prolific knitter, but that doesn't mean I can't get better. 

Practice in health: My entire health life needs a jumpstart. This will help me do more yoga and less binge drinking. Drink more tea and do more meditating. 

Practice in activism: This is where "Practice what you preach" comes in handy. This year I am going to be more involved in my local community. 

Practice in love: My family needs me to be there for them, and that means allowing myself to love fiercely and completely. This one actually scares me, I know what it's like to hurt; I want to protect myself. 

2018 is going to have many things, I am sure. It should be really interesting to see how this ends up happening. I am hopeful for this year. 

Comment

2017 In Review: Or, Avoiding the Dumpster Fire That Was Last Year, Plus a Few Profound Things Mixed In

2017 In Review: Or, Avoiding the Dumpster Fire That Was Last Year, Plus a Few Profound Things Mixed In

How was it that last year was worse than 2016? Don’t answer that, it’s a rhetorical question. I think that we can all—if we have eyes—understand the crazy that this year has been. I’ve never been as fired up about politics and people as I have been. A lot of that is in direct response in my becoming a mother (and maybe a little becoming my mother). Be the change you want to see and all that. 

During Thanksgiving, my Mother In Law asked us what our highs and lows of this year were. That felt like a dangerous question. One I don’t know if I felt comfortable answering. Would they like my highs and lows? Were my highs high enough? Were they too obvious? What about my lows? How could I tell a bunch of people who voted for “the other guy” that their person made me feel unsafe as a woman in this world? I still want them to like me. How could I bridge that divide between my and their viewpoints? It was not a really safe space to discuss the incredibly deep and profound things that I felt about this year. This isn’t that space either, but it is easier for me to think about it and write it out, instead of answering on the spot. I am learning that I need to be more open and open to discussion when it comes to talking to my family who may or may not disagree with me. I think that if our country is going to have any hope of survival, it’s going to be us coming together to talk to our family members and realizing that we are all still humans. That and also establishing boundaries to keep yourself protected. Ha. 

In an effort to be a bit more open, here are some of my low points in the year: 

1.) Resurgence of Nazi Idealism in our country: 

 This can probably also be filed under, why I don’t like DT. Treat women like crap, Ban all brown people, but call literal Nazis “nice guys”. No wonder they’re more bold. This is not okay, not even close to okay. This is why I need to speak up, not to the entire world, but to our family members who call racists and bigots “protestors exercising their freedom of speech” and turn around to the black community doing the same thing but calling them “thugs who need to get a job and get off the street”. 

RACISM IS NOT OKAY. (And reverse racism doesn’t exist, it’s not how it works)
My human value is not diminished when minorities reach equality with us. Your human value is not diminished. However, if you try to take that value away from someone who is already struggling to survive and fight systemic pressures already in place, then yes…your human value is going to be in question. And you and I are not going to get along very well. 

2.) Systemic Injustice in Our Culture. 

You guys. This can’t be new news. Why why why are we still dealing with this? Why do I feel like I am living in Oliver Twist or Bleak House? If someone spontaneously combusts I really don’t think that I am going to be surprised.

Every day, I am sick of the fear that we have of each other. I am tired of living in a country where police brutality is the norm. I am disheartened to see that there are still mass shootings happening every single day, and nothing is done for sensible gun control. I am so incredibly tired of this vilification of immigrants and minorities, and the working poor. Remember when your grandparents moved here for a better life? How is that different from anyone trying to live here? Why wont we let poor mothers have food assistance without judgement? Why does another black kid have to die today at the hands of a cop?  When I hear these things, I have no idea what we’re going to do to stop it and the task feels so overwhelming and I begin to lose hope. 

America, we can do better.
    We can do better. 

Whew, these things weigh heavily on me every single day. How can I change there narrative of America’s story without white washing the horrible and unforgivable acts that we have always done to the poor, sick, and needy? 

This year wasn’t a complete wash though: 

My one good thing: This is the best thing. The most wonderful thing about this year. 

Holden was born. Little brother to Beckett and complete perfection. Holden was a surprise baby, and I was so nervous the entire pregnancy. Honestly, I thought that we were going to lose him in the beginning. I couldn’t be so lucky with two perfect pregnancies in a row could I? I held my breath the entire time. And the day he came, he was the most beautiful thing. He gave me a quick labor and delivery and an easy recovery—and he gave me the chance to be a mother again. I can’t imagine my life without him. 

Every single day I stare at him in awe. I stare at his older brother the same way. They are my life. It hasn’t been easy to care for these two little people. However, nothing worth it ever is. 

Some days I feel guilty that I brought them into this world, full of chaos and madness. What will their world be like when they get older? I am going to work my hardest to give them a world that is cleaner and more loving than it was when they were born. They have made me more brave, and more fierce, and more willing to stand up for what I believe in than anything else ever has. 

Every human deserves to be treated with dignity.

Musings.

Comment

Musings.

First of all, I hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday.  

Our Christmas was magical-thanks to a lot of good food, good people, and great moments.  

I’m currently on the road, heading back home from a long day driving up to Oregon to spread my mom’s ashes. It was our last chance before my boys and I moved to Florida and we lost our chance to give my mom a proper send off. 

We had failed my mother so often in her life, it was the least we could do to give her a proper send off in the place she loved so much.  

Today was filled with mostly good memories. California always seemed to hold good memories for my mother. We gave her back to the beach she used to camp in as a girl; and the beach that my sister and I first saw the ocean. We gave her back to the Redwood Forest; a place she was ready to move to the moment she saw it. We gave her back to the Oregon shore; the place of her dreams, the place she desperately wanted to move to   

Today was a good day. 

We chose these places because she loved them so much. We also chose them because these were places where the memories of abuse, poverty, and her disease were distant. These were places where my mother flourished and blossomed for a short time. Places in the world where she was completely and truly free.  

I hope her soul is at peace now. I hope that we did the right thing by her today. I hope that she enjoys the ocean breezes and the big big trees. 

IMG_0689.JPG

My mother’s free spirit is a large part of the inspiration for my patterns and website. She is always with me, guiding me, pushing me forward, and reminding me to live in the moment. 

Comment