Saturday, January 21, 2017

Women's March: Las Vegas

This post is simple: I am feeling grateful and overwhelmingly proud of the way cities united today. I am hopeful that we can represent what America is: unique, diverse, blended, beautiful. I kept thinking of all the ways I can continue to live a life that makes all feel acknowledged and welcome- and staring at the women, men, and children around me today, I couldn't help but think they were doing the same. Below are photos from the march in Las Vegas. 

There is also a journal entry I wrote a few days after the election that I always felt shaky to share. Maybe it revealed to much about my sensitivity and heartbreak. But what are these lives of ours for if not to be vulnerable and open? 

I hope you enjoy the photos and the post, grateful for each and every one of you that reads this blog of mine! You are the vision and the hope I see for this world. 

This was my uber driver on the way to the walk, Delana. She asked me
march for her and her daughters. She was the kindest woman, who missed
the walk to work for her family. SO much love to this one!

10.10.16 Journal Entry: to those still crying, this is where we take our lives back 

You can cater your life to someone else. Let it rest for so long in their hands it no longer looks like the dreams, hopes, and wonders you had thought about the world. You can give up on the wishes you had said in a whisper. You can be compliant. Ignore the loud call of what you are, what you are capable of. You can hand over all you have, and then all you are yet to have, pockets out-turned and solely lined with lint. You can listen when they say you are selfish. When they hush you, rush you, make you believe you are small, feeble, insignificant. In your last breath of courage, you may say, “this is mine,” looking at the life they mangled, spit on, left unfed. You may play tug of war with what remains. Pulling back and forth, you can decide to fall to the ground. You could stay down.


You can get up on tired legs and bruised feet. You can hold so tightly what is yours. Hold your own life and cradle the bundle that could only ever grow in your arms.

And just because we’ve got it figured out now that our lives are our own, that we must be honest and loud about what we want, the work is not done. The work is never done. And the work left is making us fearful. Silence the fear with hope. Go ahead, let your hands tremble as you shake your fists. But shake them. Let your voice break as you use tears to reawaken empathy, compassion, union. 

Link your life with the ones who look nothing like yours. Do we have to speak the same language to feel like we can communicate? Do we have to pray to the same God to all live for something bigger than us? Do we all have to love the same way to know it is the one power to heal? Do we all have to keep referring to the color of our skin or our gender? Checking boxes that we never fit into in the first place?

No. No. No. No. No.

Say the words until the yes-ers finally get that we will never succeed as a nation by cutting the heels of those running with us.

So take your life back. Not just when it feels nice, light, like the sound of the first time you remember hearing your own heartbeat. Not just when it supports you, when what is going on around you doesn’t affect you personally. Take your life back when it’s heavy and the pain causes you to heave. When the weight sits on top of your shoulders and leaves marks of its magnitude. When everyone else is struggling and you realize, that when we said “liberty and justice for all” we didn’t mean that ‘all’ would come in chapters, last only for some, while others tried to hold onto the dust.

What are we supposed to do with all this time and yet so little of it? What are we supposed to do when we were so sure America would sing equality again and now it just lets out a broken moan? What are we supposed to do when the people we love have nowhere to go except to be alone?

We hold them. We hold them like the life of ours we took back. We help others take the oppression off their shoulders. We lift up, up, and up. And when those around us are trying to run with their heels cut and bleeding, we put their arms over our shoulders. We support the brothers and sisters that were never invited to family gatherings in the first place. We love them.

We pick ourselves up and run on the fierce frames they supposed were permanently broken. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

15 Things I am Still Reminding Myself by Taylor Burby

Taylor became a friend of my sister's, and then became a friend of mine, and she pretty much becomes a friend of anyone she encounters. She is kind and deliberate and hilarious. She will listen to anyone's life story and cast no judgment and encourage them to the end. She also wrote this wine-tipsy and then found some mistakes and texted me, "It's like I wrote this drunk or something (I did lolol)." Her heart is gold and you'll read her list and love her. (And possibly attempt writing your own 15 things a little wine-tipsy, clearly it stirs up all the important stuff).

15 Things I am Still Reminding Myself by Taylor Burby

1.       In every sense, you are the master of your own reality.
2.       Your Red String pulls strong---you are destined to meet the most incredible, inspiring people (that you will owe immense gratitude (possibly even your first born)) when you least expect it; a bus ride through the forests of Chile, sitting at Sambalatte across from an “Om Gnome” stickered laptop, a night of lantern lighting in Pai, a coffee shop near the Truckee River, high school.

3.       We are all living different stories. Stop comparing yourself to people on future pages or of different books altogether.
4.       You are not going to a Hell for your mistakes, but are completely capable of/will put yourself through Hell. (Mostly with sex and boys---two things you should probably chill out with, dude. You have a “great ass”, but you are more than a piece of it (PPS DO NOT DO A SINGLE THING EVER BECAUSE OF A BOY)).
5.       Stop looking; it/they will find you. (Especially tarot card readers and stray dogs).

6.       You will regret not showing up to their weddings, nights out, birthdays, graduations, etc. Say yes. Hold onto that yes with a vice grip and show your little face. STOP BEING A FLAKE (you will regret it).

7.       Happiness Pro Tips: Listen to Sunset Lover, practice meditation, hike volcanoes, learn to say no, stop being a doormat, hug your friends (20 seconds” reduces the harmful physical effects of stress”), stop trying to convince yourself you are going into a med program to please your dad (girl, do you remember killing your GPA with that bio grade?), “Be Brave”.
8.       Everything is occurring in good time, just as it should. Learn patience and acceptance.
9.       You’ll hit twenty-one and still make mistakes and feel these struggles. More trips around the sun is not equivalent to a disintegration of your issues, but a transformation of them (check out the conservations of mass and energy for reference). PS this “adulthood” you strive for and glorify is mostly what you are anticipating, but also nothing you could have imagined. The freedom is there and yes, plastering on that tight dress and crying because your heels cause you immense pain while you puke in a too-thin stall because you have the alcohol tolerance of a three-year-old creature and why are you even wearing these fucking things have you never heard of wedges? God damn dancing at a club is great fun, but student loans, empty bank accounts, nights on couches, and broken dreams are real, dude. Be ready for your struggle.

10.   You will not be able to change their mind. Stop trying. You’ve dug your hole deep enough, friend.

11.   KEEP JOURNALING; believe it or not, one day, you’ll be happy to read back and remember how low you felt. Pain that was so encompassing, every inch of you hurt---deep into your bones you ached. You’ll laugh and look to Old Taylor’s internal quarrels, flounders, and consuming anxieties with a love, forgiveness, and knowingness permitted only by time. These things pass and “the sun also rises”, sweet babe.
12.   “You will have a luck coveted by others” (first fortune cookie of 2017). Seriously though. Thank those lucky stars and the graciousness of others that you will survive on.

13.   Please, just go over there. Don’t wait until you’re breathing in the stale smells of death and disinfectant while she rests in that hospital bed, translucent skin tight to frail bones, too weak to speak past a whisper. Soon she will be gone and your regret will linger.
14.   Once you have time to breathe away from the suffocating weight of the people and air that both weigh heavy with beliefs contradicting to what your own heart bleeds, you will find that the discomfort you find in their words is meant to push you towards your own truths. IT IS OKAY THAT YOUR TRUTHS DO NOT MEET THE SAME STANDARDS AND CRITERIA AS OTHERS. 

15.   Most importantly: Ubuntu. We are one.

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