Because we need it
Old trees are giving me joy right now. Recently, Cornell University (where I work) purchased a parcel of land outside of Ithaca. For whatever reason (it is very hilly and steep, so would've been hell to log, is my guess), about half of the acreage is comprised of old growth forest. As in, the trees are older than European settlement in this part of Upstate. I went there for the first time yesterday. It seemed a better way to celebrate independence, to experience a bit of Earth independent from us all this time. We've had heavy rain recently, so I couldn't really just sit there for a while the way I'd like to at some point, but to walk through it was joyful. That feeling I get when I walk through old cathedrals-- the reverent hush, the feeling of spirit accumulating and accumulating for so long-- that's how it was. But also green and vibrant and spacious at the same time, like everything was taking deep, steady breaths. I can't wait to go back.
Learning to listen to my body intuition after a lifetime of denying it. Taking breaks when I need them instead of trying to push through. Setting the hardest boundaries I’ve ever set. Weathering the fear and discomfort of holding these boundaries in the face of change-back attacks. Trusting my sense of reality, even when someone distorts it. My husband taking over the grocery shopping and giving me time to write 💗 Looking forward to a beachside patio dinner with two of my closest friends tonight. The sound of my chocolate lab panting beside me on our morning walk. His bouncy twinkletoe gait. The five-foot sweet pea plants flourishing in my garden after I planted them as an experiment. The I Will Always Love You instrumental on the Bridgerton Queen Charlotte soundtrack, which is helping me crack a story I’m writing about an old lover. The teal patio umbrella in my backyard. Your Substack.
It sounds like you have been basking in the sunshine of friendship and good music lately. A good reminder for me to make some calls and send some texts, thank you! I'm first in line for the Trauma is not a Glow Up merch. I loved that conversation. I've been getting some joy listening through albums of bands/festivals I saw live when I was in college. I was fortunate to go to school in Colorado in the mid-late 90s so I saw a lot of great shows at Red Rocks and other venues. Listening to Lilith Fair collections, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Tori Amos, taking myself back to that time in my life. It has been a joy!
thank you for sharing the poem by John Murillo. i will never forget it.