When it’s all moving fast, we slow the fuck down. We breathe in and fill our diaphragms. We breathe out the sound pshhh, like “oh pshhh, we’ve got this.” Or “Oh, pshhhit this is hard.”

When it’s all spinning out, we spiral in slow, gentle-like and land still in the center, the eye of the storm that never blinks and can see the truth. Interdependence, interconnection. Our fingers all pointing to the same moon.

When they say stock up, we consume even less. Less news, less plastic, less paper. We see the shelves empty of eggs, and we do not panic. We turn to the shelves of our imagination, full of incubating ovals that feed us what we need. A whole meal of possibility.

When they say brace yourselves, we go limp, soft. We surrender, which we know will cause less damage to our bodies and our hearts when we fall.

When the volume gets cranked on information, media, mayhem and panic, we go quiet as a cloud. We go silent night, holy night. We wait with breath bated for the birth of hope.

Quiet enough to hear frogs, crickets, owls, the whispers of our deepest longings.

When they say this is an unprecedented time, we say this is not new. Not really. Our ancestors survived plague, famine, disease, exile from their homes and lives, theft of their languages and customs and prayers. We come from them, and our cells remember.

When they say, save yourself!! we look for ways to take care of each other, to distribute surplus. We share resources, effort, love.

When they say be afraid of each other, we throw understanding from our windows, we plant lemon balm and lavender and rosemary to fill the six feet between us with medicine and life.

When it comes to grief, they are silent because they don’t know what to say. We do. We say, there will be no getting back to normal. We say destruction and creation are part of one breath. We say every feeling you have is sacred. Kiss it, leave flowers and honey at its feet, make the sign of the cross, say a prayer, bow our heads. We say, I’m so sorry you’re hurting. We offer witness and compassion. We know to be quiet and still. We know to take off all our clothes, slither out of our old skin and tumble into a tower of dry bones. We do this because we know the breath of the holy world will blow through us, and we will dance again.

* reprinted from Jen Violi’s Story Sanctuary on Patreon https://www.patreon.com/posts/35490357

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