the waters

are the words

i am looking for.

first i sat in silence.

silence births space

for words.

then i ran free

and wild.

burning up gunk

daring up the courage

for words.

then i saw work.

digging to create

building the structure for my wor(k)ds.

and finally

i sink into the water









knowing in my

big heart

i am waiting for something huge.

knowing in my

big heart

i am not waiting.

nothing is huge.

everything is slowly shifting


up to the surface

of my life.

i am living.


august 1, 2012



thinking about coming back.


right now my neighbor is out on her front lawn

swath of brilliant green grass

freshly mowed.

she has a paper grocery bag

she is bent over


dandelions gone to seed.

she puts them in her bag.

it took some minutes before i realized

why the bag.

she is capturing the seeds

trying to keep the dandelions

from planting themselves

time and time again.

in my inbox i have several messages recently

about dandelions.

their healing properties.

how to make them into tea.

dandelion fritters.

isn’t the world amazing.

here we are

living side by side.

she has her brown bag.

i have dandelion tea.

her grown daughter is out front also.

smoking a cigarette.

hair disheveled.

they told us she is having brain surgery.

maybe she already has, and she is recovering.

maybe she is waiting for the date.

maybe when your daughter needs brain surgery

the healing properties of dandelions

are different.



during the day i’ve been dancing.
when i first got down here i noticed how gigantic my belly has gotten and began the downward spiral that noticing belly growth can bring on. i was wondering why, i was feeling sorry for myself, i was feeling embarrassed, i was sad.
i decided i needed to be moving more (the tennis and yoga i had been doing at home wasn’t enough?!) and i asked my zumba-ing friend if she could recommend a dvd i could try. meanwhile i found online this video by a yogini i like (shiva rae) called, yoga trance dance.  (the kidlets affectionally call it, “dance trance pants.”)
on a whim it was ordered.
the day it arrived i put it in and the kids and i danced through several of the prearranged half hour options. the next day we started building our own chunk of dancing fun using the matrix option. somehow this yoga dance video feels like a fascinating melding of my youth with my present day self. the yogic aspects, the shamanic feeling of the drumming are from my current life. the free form wild dancing remind me of my time spent spinning wildly through the audience at this or that live show back when i was unguided hippie. the two of me are weaving themselves together as i dance and stomp around my mom’s living room in south carolina parroting back at shiva, “dance for love! dance for joy! dance for truth!” as i twirl and bounce and kick and stretch and do whatever else happens in the pulsing music.

the first day i was euphoric.  leaping and swirling around the space with the kids. drumming my feet and hands into the soft carpeting. dancing with them and apart towards and away. i felt like huge chunks of stress and discontent were breaking free. i was sweating and my heart was pounding and i was happy and i couldn’t believe i had somehow stumbled upon exercise and spiritual cleansing wrapped up tidily into one moment.

this kind of shedding feeling carried on for a few days of dancing. like the dancing was shaking off layers of mental, emotional, spiritual gunk. i was shocked and humbled by the ease of it and the intensity. it felt a little life changing.

then one day it was less — perfect. i connected with my team and asked for guidance. i asked if there was something i needed to know.
you need to work to bring your awareness to the energy you have in your body.
i need to build energy?
no. the energy is already there. you need to notice it.
can you help me?
is there a way i can move that will help?
can you prompt me so i know how to move?
if i just let go can send the message to my body so it knows how to move.
yes. don’t think about it. let it arise.

so i danced for healing. i danced to find the energy i already have. it was different.

the next time i had a moment again where i suddenly felt i was missing something.
would it be good to let you direct my body again? is there a way i need to move?
what is this about today? what do i need?
not escape, connection.
with who? with myself?
with the kids?
with my body?
with the present moment?
with everything. with everything. stop escaping. stop being fearful. truly be here. connect.

today the kids ran a few errands with my mom and while they were gone i decided to dance. i connected with my team and asked for guidance.
just dance.
just dance?
ah, what?
just dance. not for exercise, not for release, not for healing, not to break of chunks of stagnant energy. just dance to move forward. just dance to dance. dance.

so when shiva coached me along, “dance for your loved ones, dance for truth, dance for joy…” i called out, “dance to dance! dance for dancing!” my heart pounded and i was sweating and bouncing and spinning and stomping and opening and closing. just to dance. i felt free. i wasn’t working, i wasn’t healing, i wasn’t processing or getting through anything. there were no rules or directions.  i wasn’t striving for anything except to dance. just explode into dancingness.

“this is freedom,” i kept hearing. “not reason, not should, not need to. this is freedom. this is freedom.”

tonight i left one of the shades open in my room. it is a full moon. i kept noticing her tonight and somehow, somehow, it feels related to all the dancing. like all my twirling and stomping and leaping and shaking has rhythmed me right into my body. my womanly, curving, created by nature, real body. and like somehow that pulls me closer to the place where you can look out your window in the darkness and feel the moon. feel it.


this morning we baked (our slightly adapted version of) elana’s chocolate prune bars.  while they were in the oven we packed up our backpacks with a few things so we could head out on a walk.  the kids each had a bowl of just peas while we waited for the timer to ring.  then we headed out.  i have learned finally, after almost six years, that going for a walk with the kids doesn’t feel anything like what i think a walk is.  i am making peace with it.

the bean carried with him one drawing book, one package of crayons, one usborne ocean book, one silly putty in egg and his water bottle.  the pea carried the same but no book and two silly putty’s.  i carried a drawing book and crayons, my knitting project, a blanket, my water bottle, pistacio’s, cut up apples, dried mango, a few wipes, a pack of the berry ricola (for emergencies only) and my phone.  we walked a short ways and then they asked to set up our blanket to rest.  they asked for nibble bites.  we sat and snacked, the bean looked at this book, they took out their silly putty and played with it.  castle james and one of my mom’s dogs had followed us and they worked at exploring the woods that surrounded the field we sat in and circling back to check in with us.  it is a warm day with a breeze and it felt idyllic to sit there.  quiet.  outside.  surrounded by mostly nothing.  we didn’t draw, i didn’t knit, we just kind of sat there happy.

last night while i was getting dinner ready both kids were deep in the when, where why’s.  that constant battery of questioning that seems to happen so frequently now.  “when is gran gran coming in from the barn?  when is she going to her friends house?  why is she going to her friend’s house?  what are we having for dinner?  what is in that pot?  what was that noise?  when will that be ready?  when will gran gran come in from the barn?  where is she going tonight?  why is she going somewhere?  what are we doing tomorrow?”  sometimes they just cycle through the same three questions over and over.  sometimes i answer them, sometimes i say “i wonder…” or “i don’t know…”  sometimes i say, “please stop asking me questions!”  last night i looked at the clock and it was 5:06.  i said, “i am not going to talk until the clock has the numbers 5, 1 and 0.  when you see those numbers on the clock i will speak again but until then i need to be silent.”

i kept cooking.  they stared at the clock and talked about what numbers they saw.  i waited for the moment someone was going to whine at me that they needed me.  i waited for the moment that they started to have a fight and i had to break my silence to help them work it.  i waited for my strange and unplanned attempt at a moment of peace to be rudely interrupted.  but it held.  then it was 5:11 and they noticed and i said, “let’s try for 5, 1, 5.”  they did that too.  they talked to each other but let me stay quiet.  i breathed.  i cooked chickpea saffron soup.  i drank my peppermint water.  at 5:15 i shelved my need for silence and dove back in.

on the walk today the bean is asking me questions about biting ants and needs to hold my hand.  we meander down the sandy path in the south carolina woods.  the pea is stomping along confidently and grabs his other hand.  she assures him we are safe and he pads along between us.  a few moments later she gets her small feet tangled up in a branch on the path, he holds tightly to her hand so she doesn’t fall.  “good save bean,” she thanks him, “good save!”  my heart swells in my chest.  the breeze blows gently past us.

its funny this life spent with my children.  where my whole days revolve around them.  where the moments rise and fall from adoration and heart breaking happiness through irritation and near insanity.  and how every morning we snuggle up in bed when we first wake up and that is how i find my way to doing it all again.



we are in aiken (s.c.) on our annual visit to spend time with my mom and the horses/donkeys/dogs on their winter mini-farm.  before we left i for some reason imagined that i’d have all this time to spend writing/blogging while i was down there.  i even dreamt up the idea of doing a little every-day-blogger-revisit thing.  but here we are, six days into our stay, and i am sitting down to tap the keys of my old laptop for the first time.

today we went to the new playground built next to the aiken library.  it is a really nice playground with that soft kind of rubber stuff underneath the whole play area and lots of things to climb and slide down.  but, i have been somehow reshaped by our life choices in moving towards spending time in the woods and playing on fallen logs and giant rocks.  i can see that this is a lovely playground all new and clean but the insanely bright colors and plastic african drum replica’s just feel odd to me.  the kids do enjoy it for about thirty minutes but then we are all ready to go.  i am not sure what to make of it.  i want to be aware but not stuck in my ways.  i want to embrace playing in the woods without becoming a snob about the whole thing.

there is a little boy at the park who is desperate for playmates.  he follows us around from the moment we arrive, first kind of growling and screaming and then launching himself in our general direction.  his mom is sitting at the far edge of the park area on a blanket reading a book.  at first i want him to just leave us alone.  i can see that the pea is unhappy that he is coming into our space and i don’t like how he is acting.  but i can see plainly that he is not going anywhere.  i take a deep breath and i close my eyes for a moment until i can see him surrounded by light.  it helps, we learn his name and take turns running between the tree and the bench.  but still, his behavior is erratic compared to my kids and he is talking a lot about things burning and exploding.  i can feel bean is wanting social interaction with another child but also trying to feel his way around how to handle this particular kid.  i can feel that he is sensing how i am to help him get a read. i notice i have moved into “waldorf kindy program teacher assistant” mode and i am trying to hold this little energy boat we are on steady.  before things can get more intense we decide to leave.  on the walk back to the car i know i want to speak to how that was somehow.  how it was different than seeing their friends at home.  how he was talking and acting in ways that they did not quite understand.  but, again, i don’t want to say something negative and i don’t want to try to use words to explain something that doesn’t need explaining.  we walk towards the car holding hands – silent.

then i say, “all kids are different.”

and beanie says, “yeah.”

and the pea says, “yeah there is beanie, and then me and that boy – all different.”


then it is all over and we buckle into our seats and drive home.  to the place that bean calls, “our south carolina house,” even though i have tried to tell him it is not ours.


at home we eat oatcakes (one of several recipes i have enjoyed trying out from heidi swanson’s super natural everyday cookbook which my mom got for herself to have down here) and i drink more tea.  then we head out to play in the backyard.







today in meditation i asked to, what do i need to be right now?

flash was gone for thirteen days and now he is home.

the kids are bouncing off the walls happy.

and it is so nice to be a family of four again.

there is also the transition though.

sometimes i remember there will be a transition when he departs

but forget there is another one when he returns.

so i asked to be what i need to be

for myself

for my kids

for flash.

to be what i need to be to help us through these few little days of shifting again.

i saw myself as a shining beacon

bursting with light from above and below.

i saw myself standing strong and holding the space for us

i saw that the strength was soft and yeilding

i saw that our family is filled with love

and sometimes all that love need huge bursts of light

as well.

i saw how my tendency when he first gets back is to disappear a little bit

to assume the kids need me less

to go on a kind of energetic break.

but that really that is not what any of us need me to do.

(not even me!)

that a healthy function would be bringing the light

holding my spot in this family

being brightly present.


the other day we went for a walk in the forest.

covered by a blanket of snow.

with castle james.

i let him off leash and hoped he’d stay close.

he did.

we stomped through the snow a bit.

we climbed up slight hills suddenly imposing

when you are tiny

and dressed in so much gear.

we padded in

we stomped out

we slid around.

it wasn’t a long hike.

it wasn’t exercise for me.

but it totally changed my day.

being surrounded by mother earth

held by nature

and her amazing depth and breadth.

she doesn’t go on break.

she shines with strength from above and below.

her power is soft and yielding.

she is bursting with light.

she holds us all.