You Have It, And It's Everything
Pay attention to what life is trying to reveal to you. Say yes to its fierce, ruthless, and loving grace. ~ Adyashanti
Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you're with your people somewhere, and you're feeling full (but not too full to feast thoroughly and completely this week.) I am planning on spending the day making pumpkin pies (paleo and gluten-free pie crust because, yes, yes, I am happily becoming the woman I sort of rolled my eyes at for years!), along with coconut milk maple syrup ice cream, cranberry sauce, pomegranate kombucha, and maybe some cookies because, cookies — always! We have family coming today and then more Friday, so I'm at right where I want to be, which is sweet.
Anyway, this is kind of a long post, and it hops around. It starts with a dream I had recently, that leads to some old pictures being discovered, that leads to nostalgia about Thanksgiving, friends, California, cowboy boots, old trucks, and you know, life. And then it ends with a list I wrote 4 years ago, which is kind of magical and I think you should read it (it's featured at the end of this whole post, so if you get a little like: "Momo, what are you even talking about, can we wrap it up?" just skip down to that part, and boom, basically that's where I'm headed.)
So, I had this dream a couple weeks ago. In it, I was sitting in the back of this old, white truck I used to own with some girlfriends. And we were laughing a lot because we were on a drug called ... (wait for it) ... "Pre-School". I woke up literally laughing out loud. A drug called pre-school, you know? It's perfect and ridiculous, considering I have a 2 and half year old, and that about sums up my life every day.
I had to text my friends who were in the dream about the dream.
And then, my friend Anna Belle (the babe in red) texted me this picture back.....
t is a picture of us on Thanksgiving Day several moons ago, and whatever is going on here, it feels pretty much right in alignment with the dream.
I had totally forgotten about this photo, and getting it at that moment was such a comforting, yet alluring reminder of what the universe has been trying to reveal to me. I say "universe", but it could also be my psyche, my soul, or just coincidence/synchronicity. (Sometimes I can't tell the difference.)
But, I do think the "universe" speaks to us through our dreams, and/or things that catch our attention in life, or things that just happens. And sometimes, it delivers exactly what we need to see, at exactly the moment we need to see it. This isn't the same truck I used to own, but on another level maybe it is?? (The truck I actually used to own is featured down below, which was also part of this Cali Thanksgiving trip, because I had sold it to Emil in Asheville, and then she drove in the California when she moved there. I know, dreams/reality all mixed up at this point!)
But the dream I had, and getting the photos back-to-back was special. Sometimes your best self is being in some hot, striped, skin-tight dress, wearing your cowboy boots that have been in your life since you were nineteen, with your smokin' friends, in big sunglasses, in some magic California light on Thanksgiving Day.
I think when it comes down to it, that's the version of myself I really want to be. Or rather, that's the version of myself I never want to not-be, even as I become other versions of myself, as well.
Anyway, it's been sweet to look at these pics again, and see my twenty-something baby face, and my old blue jeans, and of course, those cowboy boots.
I remember that time for sure: flying to Cali from NC, and meeting my friend Tim on the layover in some Midwestern city. He brought me an almond butter sandwich from Brooklyn, and I ate it on the plane, drinking coffee while we flew over the Rockies at night. Everything twinkled the way it does when you're in the sky, in the dark, high above and far away.
When we got in, it was late, and we went to a dive bar anyway. The next day we shopped at the Berkeley Bowl. We made Thanksgiving dinner in Anna Belle's tiny yet oh-so-sweet apartment. My brother came over from Palo Alto where he was in school, and we all ate outside together, in the air that tasted like wine, and milk, and honey.
Everyone's lives were in flux: boyfriends, girlfriends, jobs, grad school, building houses, heartaches, cross country moves, the works. Big life stuff, but it felt like were just all together for a moment, which if the holidays mean anything to me, I guess it's that?
We saw Fantastic Mr. Fox later that night. I remember we slept 2-to-the-bed, 2-to-the-floor all week, and drank whiskey. We went to Bolinas, and drew in the sand. We drove around in the truck that I used to own, that Emil now owned. (and then we got a ticket for some of us riding in the back of that truck! Eye roll, Bay Area, like I don't think I've ever even gotten a warning for doing that here in Asheville.)
So that was Thanksgiving in California about 8 years ago. I just wanted to write about it :)
A few years after that, I wrote a blog post (on my old, ancient blog Big Barn Love which I'm a little embarrassed to share, but whatever, this is happening.) I wrote it Thanksgiving week about all the things I was grateful for that year.
That year, not unlike this year, was a strange elixir of dark and luminous. I had been trying to get pregnant for awhile, and I wasn't, and I didn't understand why. I started working with a shaman-type person that kind of blew my world open. (I have yet to be able to write about that, but I feel it coming...) I started dreaming, and experiencing and feeling things I never had before. I knew I wanted to write and try to explain this whole deal, but I wasn't sure how to do that (yet). I starting knowing on a deep level that there are ways of experiencing this world that were far, far beyond what I'd ever been taught in school, and I was pretty curious about learning everything I could about that piece of myself.
I thought I'd share that list from four years ago again, since basically everything on it feels pretty relevant, and almost everything I wrote about has actually impacted me on a huge level. Some of it makes me a little tingly, especially the part where I mention the name Evangeline (which is my daughter's full name) though I had no daughter then, and was not pregnant though we'd been trying for over a year at that point.
I'm coming up with a new list, which maybe I'll post at the end of 2017, since this year still feels like it's in play. This year has been really real. I am not ready to process it all yet.
All of this is to say: I hope wherever you are this week, wherever you're going, you're feeling alive and full and whatever best dreams you have feel real — whether that's sitting in the back of a truck in cowboy boots taking a drug called pre-school, or something entirely different — I hope you can feel them right now. Hold onto those things that keep finding you again and again, and pay attention fiercely. I don't know anything for certain, but I am pretty sure you have it already, and that it's everything.
Dear Life, Thanks for The Year (or 100ish things I'm grateful for) ~ November, 2013
The smell of wood smoke as the fall is coming.
Lola, watching you run.
Stringer, watching you hunt.
That I can feel more deeply and love more fiercely than I ever have before.
That sometimes I can go all the way, even when I think that I can’t.
The trip to Maine this summer with Si, Ezra, Jemia and Benny.
The way we laughed until we almost bubbled over and broke.
That field that lead out into the ocean. How I cried and remembered.
Ezra, and how real we can be.
Timmy. How we never miss a beat.
That night we lay out and unfolded into it. The Milky Way.
All the lessons trying to get pregnant have taught me this year.
My friend’s babies.
For whoever you are, I can’t wait to meet you some day.
How Benny makes me laugh from the truest place I know.
The way I can finally let go in water.
Dancing till I shimmer.
That moment it feels like flying.
Letters and love songs.
Singing with Benny, how the songs that he writes break me open.
Cubanos in the afternoon.
How I can tap into things.
Elegant Femme et my Frenchie, Evangeline.
Sensuality… how you carry me.
The gifts of the feminine.
The moving with the masculine.
My breasts, my ass, what curves finally did for me.
The way my body knows what it knows.
That I gave up wanting or trying to be too skinny.
Women in general. You are so beautiful. I want you all.
That I started writing again.
For real this time.
My cowboy boots the last 12 years long.
Our Mercedes Benz. Yeah.
The untamed places inside myself.
Bobby Dylan, if I couldn’t marry you I’m glad I found someone like you.
That stranger that found my yearbook under a bridge in Portland and sent it back.
Carbs. I love you.
When I remember to get up at 6 how wide open this world is.
Abe, and his Motorcycle Dreams.
The way he rolls into town and lights our world on fire.
The carousel ride with Candy and Ben.
The Brooklyn Bridge.
My mom and my dad. How they are always marching to their own beat.
Yasmin, your beauty and your vulnerability.
Shannon and how she’s taught me so much about the Beloved
Lucy, for all the ways we can open up together.
Jessie, coast to coast love. Your eyes.
Anna Belle, growing into a different kind of us.
Kate, the way you move your hips.
Cory, how we can dip into the mystery, and how you really see me.
Teryn. Your mind and your visions. Your protection.
The way Barbara came to me in my dreams
and let me see the other side.
DK. What I can experience with you. How you remind me to stay fierce and wild.
That moment you can feel it before you can see it.
The snakes that visited me this year.
Feathers in the field.
Opening the love-window.
Waking up into you.
The trips to the ocean.
The sand and salt on my lips.
The way I didn’t see that one coming, but I’m so glad it came.
That day on the trampoline this summer, when the sky was going dark and the storm was setting in and I felt like I was coming back.
My session with Helen, how she could feel me and knew it was on it’s way.
Falling back into love.
Driving on the days when you’re falling apart but it’s all coming together at the same time.
Kissing in the Magic Thrift Store .
When I knew you had been there all along.
That it still feels like only the beginning.