Sunday, October 19, 2014

Writing & Healing

Bessel van der Klok:

…As far as I’m aware, the first systematic test of the power of language to relieve trauma was done in 1986, when James Pennebaker at the University of Texas in Austin turned his introductory psychology class into an experimental laboratory. Pennebaker started off with a healthy respect for the importance of inhibition, of keeping things to yourself, which he viewed as the…

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"Radical Self-Care"

“Radical Self-Care”

Annie Lamott:

What does radical self-care mean for you?

Radical self-care means that I gently bust myself out of the desperate lifelong need to please, and it means that I start to say no as a complete sentence. Women get so used to leftovers, helping everybody else get it together, and then living their lives from what time and life force and energy and family goodwill are left over. My mother…

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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Losses: Reading

Americanah is about love, and race, and authenticity, and hair, and the way women’s choices are limited, and the way women limit themselves.

It is also a book about the love of books and reading. About falling in love with books, and libraries, connecting with other people about books, getting lost in books.

This is a loss that I don’t really talk about. It’s too important; I can’t risk having it…

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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Journal Entry: Craving

I come home, take off my clothes, lie down without dinner. Vic says: a relationship being over isn’t a decision; it’s a state of being. You’re not there.

I lie in bed wanting him. I lie in bed hungry for food I’m too tired to make or buy, and hungry for him. Words like addiction come to mind. I’m all exhaustion and ache.

I turned down his offer to come here for dinner. Too long a trek on a work…

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

depression, Depression

I’ve been dragging since we got back from the east coast. First, trying to recover energy post-bio-fam. Then, trying to recover energy from all the fighting.

If I went to a psychiatrist, they might say I’m depressed. I’m sleeping poorly. I’m exhausted. I’m dragging. My focus is off. “Loss of interest in life activities”, as they say. Compulsion.

We talk about these periods of time as Depression.…

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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Jack, Of Course—

Jack, Of Course–

No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear. I am not afraid, but the sensation is like being afraid. The same fluttering in the stomach, the same restlessness, the yawning. . I keep on swallowing.

At other times it feels like being mildly drunk, or concussed. There is a sort of invisible blanket between the world and me. I find it hard to take in what anyone says. Or perhaps, hard to want…

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Friday, October 3, 2014

Burn Center

Sharon Olds:

When my mother talks about the Burn Center
she’s given to the local hospital
my hair lifts and waves like smoke
in the air around my head. She speaks of the
beds in her name, the suspension baths and
square miles of lint, and I think of the
years with her, as a child, as if
without skin, walking around scalded
raw, first degree burns over ninety
percent of my body. I would stick to…

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Thursday, October 2, 2014

On “Calling In”

On “Calling In”

The post below is by Ngọc Loan Trần, writing for Black Girl Dangerous. I’d love to post excerpts, but their policy is the first 20% only, so here you go. I hope you click through—the original article is short, and worth the read.

I started having conversations on this practice of “calling in” after attending Race Forward’s Facing Race Conference in Baltimore, MD in 2012. Facing Race was a…

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Pema & bell

Pema Pema Chodron, from a conversation with bell hooks:

Accountability, as you’re talking about it, is my understanding of the spiritual path. With Trungpa Rinpoche, my feeling was that all he was doing was getting people to take responsibility for themselves, getting them to grow up. He was a master of not confirming. Talking to him was like talking to a huge space where everything bounced back,…

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Addendum IV: Silence

Elana Sztokman:

So, finally I spoke out. Right before the man found a replacement to sit next to me, I said, “Can I say something?” and without looking at me, he said yes. I said, “Imagine if instead of men and women, we were talking about Jews and non-Jews. Imagine how you would feel if a bunch of non-Jews were standing around saying that they can’t sit next to you because you’re a Jew, that…

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