setbacks happen; bring them with you
This week they began demolishing the East River Park, a swath of the lower east side of Manhattan shoreline that is a lot larger than you might think it is.
It was unthinkable to me that anyone would choose to cut down 1,000 trees and exile the wildlife (animals, birds, bugs and humans) who live and breathe there, but they have chosen, and they are cutting, exiling, taking…
Sometimes the idea of it, when I let it enter me, is so heartbreaking, it fills me with a sadness so thick I can’t move, or tell it to anyone; it’s like the cells of my being go on strike: we cannot live here.
But here we are, my cellbody, yours, theirs, the world. Trying to move forward with our lives the way we dreamed, expected, hoped, worked for…
When things we didn’t expect, never imagined could happen, or that we could bear, that hurt, disappoint, leave us aching, angry, devastated, (and they don’t have to be as physically large as the East River Park to deeply affect us, or socially significant —though, I would say that personal setbacks often weave into, are the threads of any social fabric) it can feel like they are somehow separate from the stream of life. Like you should get over it, through it, accept it — and move on.
I feel that. Do you?
Also, though, I don’t like to rush.
For one thing, I don’t believe it’s real. The rushing. Things take time, and run unmanageable courses, and some things run so deep and wide that really, you’re not getting over it, you’re not moving on because it’s part of everything for you. So, where is the rushing getting us? You can’t outrun how you feel.
So, for this living room picnic, I invite you to bring your setbacks with you.
You can share them with the group or hold them in your mindbodyheart. You will not be put on the spot to say out loud what feels un-sayable.
Venting, ranting, sighing, growling and tears are welcome. So is resilience, joy and laughter. We make our ways through, hold ourselves, and show up differently and unpredictably, and that’s fine. That’s who we are. Knowing is optional.
This is about what matters to you, to your sense of the world, of safety, of love, of fairness, of work, of home, of family, of art, of being human.
As usual, there is nothing to prepare.
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