Dearest lovely one,
Do not be afraid. On three separate and unrelated conference calls, someone spoke those words to me and others in our virtual meetings. This mantra seems part of a narrative that we will have to keep telling in as many ways as needed so that we both believe and act from that belief.
You see, if society, our neighbors, our families, and the people with whom we share a home are fearful and acting out of that fear with cognitive dissonance, dissociation, or any actions taken in an effort to not face the reality … then as changemakers and love agents it is our responsibility to show we are willing to take a stand while our bleeding hearts cry. And that in and of itself is scary.
I’ve learned that some of us take the road less traveled even as we holler out our angst from the pits of our bellies, terrified of our choices to carry out tasks that others won’t do until there are more people on the line. I’ve learned that she of straddled fences waits as we solidify and commit to doing the work that requires leaving the comfort of myths no longer feeding our stagnation.
And I’ve learned that there is a mighty battle within to distinguish that fine line between much-needed rest and just plain laziness all in the face of adversity, uncertainty, and unrest. I’ve learned that choosing love, willfully choosing to extend ourselves because we believe in the dream of beloved community is an ongoing invitation and requires ongoing consent.
Change is inevitable. And not because a ball drops on a certain day, and at a certain time once a year. You know that. And I think we have felt that reality this year more than most. But the constant of an ever-shifting existence doesn’t mean we don’t struggle with and through our own lives.
Here are a few things I’ve been sitting with as I was thinking about change and fear this year.
When there is fear or more specifically, fear of change, anger rises up like a geyser, and in an effort to quell and even coddle the emotion, we forget that it was a symptom of – and neglect to tend to – the underlying causes.
Anger causes difficulty in seeing others as embodiments of love. When we limit ourselves and our beliefs about one another to the hurt and trauma we’ve experienced – both at our own (family, church, etc.) and each other’s hands – it is easier to relieve ourselves of the responsibility to see everyone as human just like us. That’s how we justify atrocities we come to condemn generations later. You’d think we would have learned that lesson by now.
Anger and forgiveness are progressive. They aren’t set destinations one walks to and then simply call it a day. Because of that reality, mindfulness is necessary with regard to how we direct and move these cycling emotions through our bodies.
I still believe that love is the cure. I’ve explained in my book what I mean by that. And I also continue to read other related works. Two friends mentioned the book Love and Rage: The Path of Liberation Through Anger by Lama Rod Owens, and I just started reading Love is the Way: Holding on to Hope in Troubling Times by Bishop Michael Curry. These are important topics to continue to process and share stories around. I look forward to doing more of that with you in 2021.
In the meantime, what does it mean to you to hold fear, anger, and forgiveness in your body while choosing to continue the work of change fueled by love?
Peace, Love, and Wellness,
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What’s the Buzz? Here’s what’s happening
I’ll be speaking about Mental Health in a Career Transition for the Nonprofit Career Network (NCN) Philly on January 21st. Learn more and register here.
Next month is my 10-year Blogiversary! On January 9th, 2011, I published my very first blog post: Encouragement during rough times. (I think I was going for the short and sweet style of Seth Godin at the time. LOL!) If you’ve been following along all these years you will know that I have not changed my blog theme this entire time. Truth be told, I like minimalist and simple looks for blogs. I didn’t think my design would matter since it was just a hobby blog. Then it dawned on me that I wasn’t only a blogger anymore. Somewhere along the line, it wasn’t just about sharing my journey as a part of my own recovery process. Somewhere along the line, I named myself for myself through therapy, peer support, education, training, and the coaching I invested in.
I opened myself up to possibilities, and became “willing to be bad at what I wanted to someday be good at.” (Thanks for that Brandy, I’m still finding the courage to do that more and more.) I didn’t really connect head and heart to my changes, and as a result, my blogsite itself didn’t reflect my own inner transformation. So, I’ve decided to do something about it. I still really like the minimalist design, but I think I can come up with something a little more modern. I’ll be keeping you posted about the progress of this rebrand project and some surprise goodies too. Stay tuned!
Tales from the blog keepers
Do you have some things you’d like to leave behind in 2020 or at least be more conscious about working on in 2021? Here is a couple that resonated with me:
People-pleasing: It can be a result of trauma. Here’s how to recognize it.
Unnecessary stress: It’s not okay to think, “well everyone gets stressed” or “these are stressful times” and leave it there. You Need to Learn How to Complete the 'Stress Cycle’.
Muse of the month
Blerd’s the word
Are you a con-goer? Meeee toooo! Although, I must admit that I am still a noob when it comes to attending cons. I didn’t attend my first one until I was in my early 20’s. It was Zenkaikon, just in case you’re wondering. And if you thought I was still in my early 20’s, bless your sweet spirit. ;-)
Since I hate attending large events, I was slightly disappointed about not going to the one type of gathering I was willing to go to this year. I had initially set my eyes on Otakon since I hadn’t been to that one in a few years. However, a couple of cosplayers I met at The Great Philadelphia Comic Con a while back told me about BlerdCon, so I was really excited to check it out. (Yeah, I wasn't going to both 'cause cashflow.) So, when I saw the flyer, which revealed the steampunk theme, I finally convinced myself to debut my first attempt at cosplay. (I love the aesthetics of steampunk!) I even had a local friend who wanted to go with me. (We met via business networking, can you believe it?!? ) It was on! And then it wasn’t... *shakes angry fist at COVID
So, FYI BlerdCon was postponed until July 16th-18th 2021. I’m not so sure I’ll make it because… lingering COVID, but I appreciate their optimism. I know that Otakon was also postponed until August. And Zenkaikon has already announced that they will be holding their event in March online for FREE.
Until next time!
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