“Blessing in the Chaos” by Jan Richardson

To all that is chaotic
in you,
let there come silence.
Let there be
a calming
of the clamoring,
a stilling
of the voices that
have laid their claim
on you,
that have made their
home in you,
that go with you
even to the
holy places
but will not
let you rest,
will not let you
hear your life
with wholeness
or feel the grace
that fashioned you.
Let what distracts you

I have spent more time outside in the past 3 months than perhaps in the past 15 years. As a kid I played outside all day every day and could go a week without putting on a pair of shoes. I don’t remember any exact moment of transformation, but somehow I became an adult who doesn’t like the feeling of grass on my ankles and prefers air conditioning to the way my house smells with the windows open (I’ve heard this termed “fresh air”).

Will took his first steps in March just a few days before the start of the quarantine, so as our adult world...

There is no normal it seems to me with COVID19 and the next thing coming, whatever it may be. This week it is protests and violent police response as the dearth of national leadership is again spotlighted.   In my mental health/grief interview with Mark, I talked of imagining fireflies of disappointment, how they keep flickering in our peripheral visions. So many cancellations for ourselves and our loved ones. So much of feeling separate, out of touch, alone.

I was not nervous prior to talking with Mark but then felt so disconnected and exposed afterward.  I thought about Liz...

Back in late March I was bemoaning on Facebook the constant lack of unflavored yogurt at the grocery store. Yogurt, plain, is a staple of my diet since I have it for breakfast every morning, and I was feeling disoriented enough with everything else. I didn’t want to lose yogurt too. Jenny Campagna gently suggested that I just make my own in the Instant Pot. This has been a long-term goal, to make my own yogurt, for a few years in order to cut down on my plastic waste, but I always drug my feet about it. It’s hard to do new things, but since I didn’t have any other...

Like many of you, I have been doing a lot of listening these last few days, wary of adding my own voice in any way that would de-center the voices of Black people or other people of color.  I have sat uncomfortably with the anger, sadness, grief, and terror that I have heard and seen, not allowing myself to move on too quickly or be too easily soothed by the occasional feel-good image that rolls past.

We need to let ourselves feel deeply.  We need to resist saying “peace, peace” when the reality for so many of us and our neighbors is far from peace. 

Yet while those of us who...