Visit my show at the PSCCU Credit Union, Vashon, Washington May, June 2024 

What’s growing now (a pause)

What’s growing in your garden? Not just in your outside garden, which I hope is flourishing, but in your inner garden as well—the land of hopes, dreams, possibilities, compromises, and creations.

This year in the northwest, winter felt long, and then spring, when it came, seemed rather ambivalent—tantalizing us with a few warm and sunny days only to retreat to late winter-like cold rains.

My lettuce and vegetables have been shaking their feeble heads asking, “Really?”

Through much of the winter, I felt tired and worn out, perhaps from the feat of publishing a book last October. I let my list of aspirations and intentions languish. Launch a radio show? I’m not ready. Re-invigorate the podcast? Slowly. Start the next book? Not until I recover from the last.

Perhaps it was the season, the cycle, or maybe it was grief.

I did manage to motivate and launch an art show—with help. But the rest of the projects were like seeds waiting in the ground.

I’m reminded that growth follows a cycle. You can’t push it, even though I’ve often tried.

This week, though, the sun came back, and with it, some of my energy. I felt a few tender shoots of possibility breaking ground. I began interviews for my radio show “Embracing the Muse,” which will launch later this month on our small, island station (a great excuse to connect with fascinating local creatives).

A moment of pause

I invite you to pause for a moment and honor the mystery of growth that spring can bring. I’m celebrating my beloved peonies as they take the garden stage for two short weeks. I hope you can bask in the glory of something growing in your life.

And while I pause, if you missed some recent posts, I offer you these.

In “Letting Life Cure Us,” I wrote an ode to an old horse, a boarder, that I have cared for eight years, but will soon put down. Nothing is wrong. We grow old. It just hurts.

In “An Unlikely Path to Humility and Mindfulness” I discovered the Japanese art of toilet cleaning and thought how beneficial it might be if some of our culture’s high and mighty would spend time cleaning toilets instead of leading us into despair. A reader suggested that I watch A Perfect Day by Wim Wenders, a favorite director, about a Japanese toilet cleaner. I understand it’s uplifting.

In “Have You Taken the AI Challenge?” I described a very unpleasant incident with a physician who treated me like an “it.” I wanted to tell him and remind myself that care, compassion, and interest in others are virtues we need as service professionals if we want to distinguish ourselves from AI look-alikes. A word of warning: if you can’t bring the human virtue of care for others into your work, it might be at risk.

In “A Humble, Life-Saving, Brain-Easing Tool,” I was reminded once again of the power of checklists. I’m not a very linear gal, but that humble checklist got me through the launch of my art exhibit in early May.

So back to you, what are you hoping will grow inside and outside as we move quickly toward summer. Whatever it is, I hope you will flourish!

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