Frinally friday friends !
That’s got a ring to it doesn’t it but in fact it’s Saturday as I write because that’s just what works better for me at the moment and if I’ve learnt anything, it’s to do what works in the season I’m in, even if it’s a bit out of the ordinary. So it’s the Friday Recliner on Saturday for now when the sun has a way of wooing me and I’ve time to drink my second cup of coffee slow.
Hoping there’s plenty of coffee and sun and being at your ease in your Saturday and as always I hope these few words and reads will be fresh air and kind company to you as you enjoy your weekend xx
A Good Word
A Good Look
I saw this picture and immediately started humming the song lyrics “Life is a rollercoaster, you just gotta ride it”
Sure is and sometimes we’ve got our arms up in the air, free handing it and yahooing with the fun of it all and other times we’re holding on, knuckles white, for dear life. Either way it looks pretty darn beautiful from this angle.
Photo by Christie Purifoy
A Good Idea
from Kimberly Coyle
When we work on balancing poses in yoga class, I always look for the still point just ahead of my gaze
—a spot on the floor, a corner of the yoga mat, a ceiling tile above me.
Inevitably, I see someone’s legs or arms shake from the corner of my eye and I start to feel my own limbs wobble.
As we hold the pose, and collectively begin to lose our balance, the instructor cues us:
“Embrace the shakes and wobbles.” she says.
“Let yourself fall out and try again.”
I used to see the wobbles and the falling out as a failure, but when your life becomes one big wobble, it changes your perspective.
Strength is not the perfection of stillness. Strength is recognizing there is a still point and you are not it.
You are not the floor, the mat, the ceiling. You are the tree swaying in the breeze outside the studio window, rooted, but bent to the breeze.
Are you entering the week on trembling legs?
Embrace the shakes and wobbles. Fall out. Try again. Your strength lies in your ability to micro adjust, to laugh at yourself, to sway like the trees.
A Few Good Reads
from Catapult Magazine
My two years of sobriety were gone in less than the length of a song.
This is I Give Up, a new series from Catapult magazine on the things—habits, expectations, jobs, ambitions, futures, and more—that people have let go of in the past few years.
Less than a month into the beginning of quarantine, I stood inside of a kratom shop in Tucson, Arizona. It was early April of 2020, shortly after the pandemic shutdown in the US had begun, and I hadn’t had a drink in over two years. The place was covered in fake-bamboo wall panels, furniture and carpets in various shades of beige-brown, and potted desert plants scattered throughout the small lobby. There were lots and lots of cacti. Lots and lots of earth tones. The style of the shop was what I would tease and describe as bohemian, typical decor for the kinds of people I imagined regularly used a mood-enhancing herbal extract, the kinds of people wanting a little pick-me-up without getting high. Which is why I was there in the first place: searching for some relief that wouldn’t blow up my whole life.
“Do you know what you’d like today, miss?” the cashier asked and stroked her hair, which was so long I couldn’t see where it ended.
“I have no idea,” I said while reading about each herbal strain. “What’s best for anxiety? I’ll just take that.”
I bought a strain called Red Hulu, the extract packed in large capsules. The cashier promised the herbs would be good for relaxation and helping me sleep. Another customer—a man in dad jeans and chunky sneakers—interrupted to say that his wife enjoyed that particular strain because of her shoulder pain. I nodded.
When I walked into my apartment twenty minutes later, I immediately swallowed some capsules, chugged them down with a pamplemousse-flavored LaCroix. Then I waited. But an hour later, I felt nothing. Not an ounce of elation or the calm I was hoping would steady my nerves. So I moved on to my plan B and drove to a nearby liquor store.
I kept the window open as I drove the few blocks, allowing the last of the coolness of the desert spring to envelop me. At this point, all I could think about was my plan. That I would only have a drink or two because I was simply anxious—everybody was these days. That this brief relapse would be just a blip in my timeline, and I’d be back on the wagon in a day or two. That almost everyone drinks, so why can’t I indulge when the world is so scary right now? Keep reading
from Verily Magazine
In late September, I attended the Kansas Book Festival and heard poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil speak about “the place of wonder in day-to-day contemporary American life.” Her talk entitled, “I Wonder, Wonder, Wonder” spoke to the need to be often in awe of the world around us. I left this talk pondering the necessity of wonder in our lives.
Nezhukumatathil began by inviting her listeners to remember our childhood wonder of fireflies—the joy and excitement of watching the night aglow with brilliant rhythmic light. As adults, Nezhukumatathil noted, we tend to lose that ability to be so easily moved to wonder. And yet, recovering wonder is necessary because, “without wonder, we lose the ability to imagine lives and hearts different from us.”
It turns out that research agrees. According to an August 2021 article in Harvard Business Review, the feeling of awe was discovered to promote “unselfing,” where a person sees himself or herself as “smaller” in the grand scheme of things. And wonder has further benefits. As researchers David P. Fessell and Karen Reivich explain, “As you tap into something larger and your sense of self shrinks, so too do your mental chatter and your worries. At the same time, your desire to connect with and help others increases. People who experience awe also report higher levels of overall life satisfaction and well-being.” keep reading
from Humans of New York
“ I wasn’t the first preacher’s wife to run away. There had been three more. One met a man on the internet. Another went into a life of drinking; she posted pictures on Facebook. And the third was Mary Anne. One Sunday morning Mary Anne was singing in the choir of her husband’s church. She walked down from the choir loft, through the middle aisle, out the back door, and nobody heard from her again. I made my own escape seven years ago. And in the Old Testament—seven years means completion. We were driving through the part of Arkansas where bluegrass runs through the hills like blood in the veins. It was dusky dark. And you could cut the tension with a knife. We’d just come from a visit with a ‘church mediator.’ I asked a few questions about our family finances, and the man accused me of ‘usurping my husband’s authority.’ My husband was a meek man. But I guess the meeting had given him courage, because on the way home he said: ‘Detra, you need to get back on my side.’ Right then something snapped. I hadn’t said a cuss word since the age of ten, when I got a whipping for saying ‘gosh.’ But I called my husband a ‘son of a bitch,’ right there in that burgundy suburban. He pulled over to the side of the road. He got right in my face with his finger, and said: ‘Satan! Don’t speak through my wife anymore!’ For the first time I didn’t cower. I didn’t grovel. I grabbed my purse, opened the door, and stepped out onto the side of Interstate 40. I knew I was crossing a line of no return. It was always clear what would happen to a woman who left the church. In our homeschooling textbook there was a picture. It shows a giant umbrella—and that umbrella is God. Beneath ‘God’ is a slightly smaller umbrella—’The Husband.’ Beneath those umbrellas are the wife and children. You can see the rain, and the rain is Satan. But it wasn’t raining the night I escaped. It was clear and dusky dark. I said: ‘Well God, I finally did it, and I wouldn’t mind a ride.’ Up in the distance I saw a car pulled off the side of the road. And the passenger door was open. I had no idea what was in there. It could have been a killer. But I knew whatever it was—had to be better than what I’d known.’” Read Part Two
There are 15 parts in total – trust me you won’t be able to stop – about a twenty minute read.
And to finish
A Good Laugh
from my fav Noelle Rhodes
That’s all for now friends. Have a beautiful weekend. Rest up. Do something you love xx