Winter in Block Island

Friday, March 23, 2018



A few weeks ago, during President's Day Weekend, we went to Block Island, off the coast of Rhode Island.  It was so quiet.  I caught myself thinking that a highway was nearby at several points, but it was just the dull roar of water hitting the rocks on every side of the island.



It was magical - as winter always is in summerlands.  We wandered through the nature preserve, bike road to the grocery store, walked the island, and to top it all off, I watched the sunset with a glass of rose in my hand. In the city, it can be easy to get in a mindset where the idea of a slower life seems boring or dull in comparison to the constant stimulation of New York.  This is so far from the truth though.  I wonder if we trick ourselves into thinking this way.  Why do we think that more is better?  I only want more of what is pure and necessary.  Everything else is just noise.



In the water are windmills, which harness the momentum of the wind generated just off coast from the open water.  They are beautiful.  They are an image of clean energy - not of the future but of right now.  If we fully cooperated with (rather than depleted) nature, energy prices would drop and dirty ways of generating energy would also diminish (looking at you, fracking and coal mining).














Music That Frees You When You're Trapped In An Office

Friday, February 23, 2018


Sometimes a song comes on that sets you free, like a fresh wind off of a lake.  It is so magical when, surreptitiously, an incredibly fitting piece of music plays at just the right moment.  Certain songs can evoke an open field on a summer evening, even when you're holed up in a gray office with wall to wall green carpeting.

These songs never fail to inspire me: 

Valentino by Diane Birch
Ave Maria by Liber Luminosa
Airwaves by Ray Lamontagne
Dog Years by Maggie Rogers
Alaska by Maggie Rogers
Havana by Camila Cabello
Sweet Lord by George Harrison
Call It What You Want by Taylor Swift
Straightjacket by Quinn XCII
Numpty by Paolo Nutini
Gold Dust Woman by Fleetwood Mac

Joan Didion's THE YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING

Wednesday, January 24, 2018


Joan Didion's The Year of Magical Thinking is a portrait of grief during the year following her husband's death.  She pinpoints the vagueness and totality of grief accurately and beautifully (based on what I experienced), cataloguing her unwillingness to throw out the last of her husband's shoes, for the wish that he would somehow one day return.  This book encourages inward thinking, self healing, and offers a perspective with distance - a perspective that illuminates what truly matters in life... As Joan writes, life can change in an instant.

"We have no way of knowing that the funeral itself will be anodyne, a kind of narcotic regression in which we are wrapped in the care of others and the gravity and meaning of the occasion.  Nor can we know ahead of the fact (and here lies the heart of the difference between grief as we imagine it and grief as it is) the unending absence that follows, the void, the very opposite of meaning, the relentless succession of moments during which we will confront the experience of meaninglessness itself."

At the same time that her husband died, Joan Didion's young adult daughter was in the ICU, in a coma.  This combination of trauma is baffling and The Year of Magical Thinking is Joan's attempt to piece it all together, to swallow and face the drastic upheaval that occurs.

Healing Sickness and Other Priorities

Monday, January 8, 2018



It can be difficult to find real balance or harmony in a society where priorities are not necessarily aligned with well-being or operating at one's highest potential.  I often hear others complain about a situation relating to imbalance, though many resentfully accept where they are, too complacent or overworked to evoke a meaningful lifestyle change.  I have experienced this before myself and now know that when I feel that nagging feeling of unrest, it is time to take action and invoke change.  An imbalanced lifestyle can create a space for sickness - a quick cold, the flu, or even more debilitating states. 



A few weeks ago, I felt the onset of a cold.  It came after feeling run down for a few weeks - both physically and emotionally.  Rather than tackling both of these issues head on, I was too overwhelmed to act timely.  I settled into them and got sick and along with the cold, came some negativity.  I felt the urge to complain - which is not very typical.  I turned to meditation and Oprah's Super Soul Sunday for a pick me up.  It became apparent that I was not validating my worth.  In allowing myself to be run down physically, and spiral into negative thinking, I was ignoring my innate worth as a human being to be well treated.  I changed my thought patterning and reprioritized what was important (ie. health is more important than work, socializing, etc.) and suddenly I felt better.  And it was like I'd never been sick at all.  I am by no means an expert, but I've witnessed these pillars in action and intellectually they make sense.  Getting sick is a warning for me to listen to my body more closely - to ask for grace and calm.  It is all knowing and just as I needed it, pulled me back into a slower pace, a safer and healthier rhythm.



Little Fires Everywhere

Monday, December 25, 2017



LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE by Celeste Ng is a tightly woven web of intersecting lives of characters impacted by child bearing and rearing.  Ng's writing is poignant and precise: "The firemen said there were little fires everywhere...Multiple points of origin.  Possible use of accelerant.  Not an accident."  The book itself is fire.

Toronto, I think I Like You

Wednesday, December 20, 2017



The first time I visited Toronto, Ontario, it rained nearly the entire time.  It was March: a cold wind blew in off of the lake.  The land was flat and the sky was so gray, and as a result, I misjudged the city.  When I arrived for the second time, it was a clear day and the sky over the lake was vibrant and expansive.  The people here always seem very friendly.  I set out to walk around the city and headed toward the old town, looping down by the water on my way back into the entertainment district.

Gratitude

Thursday, November 23, 2017



There is so much to be thankful for in this beautiful world and all that this year has taught me...Mother Earth is so abundant and just keeps on giving.  Feeling especially grateful today and always as we head into winter in the northeast.


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