Posted by: scintillatingspeck | October 24, 2015

Slow and somewhat deliberate.

I’ve tried to slow everything down for myself, today.  I only have a small number of goals for this weekend: to work on Lily’s tarantula Spider Queen costume (I am sewing the legs out of furry, black fabric we picked out together); to feed myself regularly and healthily; to sleep as much as I feel called to sleep (I’ve already had more sleep the past two nights than too many of the previous nights); and the overarching goal of keeping myself from going into abject mental distress.  It is enough, I tell myself, to focus on my own peace for a while.  Meanwhile, the less-and-less-wee lass is with her dad for the weekend, happily anticipating the Enchanted Forest event tonight at the Hitchcock Center for the Environment.  (We carved pumpkins Thursday night for this event—if anyone is going tonight, keep an eye out for Lily’s owl pumpkin and my spider pumpkin.)

I have a bunch of ideas about things to write about on this blog.  I should mention that I see my current writing here as primarily therapeutic for me; this is why, in part, it’s taking precedence over book-writing right now, although in some ways I see that as therapeutic, too.  It’s a different experience from writing a blog post, obviously—I’m seeing that I need to examine and dismantle some beliefs and hurdles around book-writing.  It takes on gargantuan proportions in my mind, and I need to address the things that keep me from moving forward with it.  Ergo the focus on what feels most therapeutic right now—I can’t do much of anything if I feel hobbled in mind and spirit.  I’m learning to trust that I’m able to put first things first, and that I’m my own strongest ally.

But back to ideas about things to write about:

  • I’ve been thinking a lot about a podcast I listened to recently, a conversation between Charles Eisenstein and Julio Olalla posted on the website “A New and Ancient Story” called A Story of Gratitude.  There was so much for me that came up and reverberated while I was listening, and I’m noting it here so that I can return to it and give voice to it.
  • I feel there is still much for me to work through around social media (for me, mostly Facebook), communicating via Internet-based methods including email, and in-person relating.  I’m seeing that I have much in the way of internal beliefs, habits, hang-ups, blockages, etc. around my social existence and I need to keep looking at it all and learning about it.
  • I’m constantly musing on the impact of Culture on mental health/illness, particularly what I’ve called the Culture of Busy but which I might more accurately call the Culture of Alienation—what can I do beyond describing it?  Is there more to describe, more to understand, more strategies to devise?  I feel that there’s a lot more.  I don’t even like using terms like “mental health” or “mental illness”—what can we say instead?  Just plain old well-being?  I feel like language is constantly limited.
  • There is much to explore on the topic of intimacy and connection.  I recently came across the concept of relationship anarchy (and this associated manifesto) and have been asking myself: what does this look like in practice, in many practices?  in my life?  Which relational constructs serve me, and which don’t?  Is it possible to rid one’s self of cultural constructs, as a human entangled in a culture?  How many ways is it possible to go against the current of the Culture of Alienation?
  • I feel like it might do me and Lily some good if I revisit some of my previous writings about homeschooling and see if they still ring true, or if any parts have shifted.  I haven’t written about homeschooling/unschooling in a long time, but it’s a big part of our lives.  I want to articulate, also, how it doesn’t feel separate from a lot of the other “deviant” choices I’ve made over the past 10-15 years—it feels connected in big ways to seeking intentional community, activism, anarchism, environmental/social justice, etc.

There is split pea soup simmering on the stove, dears.  I think most people reading this are probably quite far away, but if you happen to be nearby, I’d be glad to share some soup with you.   It’s nourishing in a way that pixels aren’t.

Feel free to weigh in about future blog topics in the comments.  If there’s something you feel especially interested in hearing about, from me, I’d like to know.

split pea soup



  1. i see a lively and engaged mind and being, here, attempting to come to terms with “LIFE,” and that speaks to me, and i appreciate you if for nothing more than that, to have the courage and willingness to speak of your inner self in a (relatively, i’m sure) noncensored and unobstructed way. this crazy wildness we call life that we are seemingly born in the midst of and come to further and further realizations regarding, if we are fortunate and have not been emotionally trampled to death. life. not pretending to be life but actually death, as is so popular in our culture. brava, senorita!

    • Thank you so much, Mar. It does take some loin-girding to do this. It’s good practice for me.

  2. um, recipe for the soup? 🙂

    • Adapted from Deborah Madison’s split pea soup recipe in “Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone” (my version is not vegetarian):

      1.5 cups split green peas
      2 Tbs olive oil (I used lard)
      1 large onion, diced
      2 carrots, diced
      2 large garlic cloves, chopped
      1/4 cup chopped parsley
      1 tsp dried marjoram (I used oregano)
      1 tsp fresh or dried chopped rosemary (I skipped this)
      1 tsp paprika
      Salt and pepper
      Aromatics (I skipped)
      2 quarts vegetable stock (I used a quart of chicken stock and a quart of turkey stock I found in the chest freezer)

      Heat oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add onion and carrots and saute about 10 min. Add garlic, parsley, herbs, paprika and pepper and cook another few minutes. Add peas to pot with aromatics, 1.5 tsps salt, and stock. Stir frequently, bring to boil, lower heat and simmer, partially covered, until peas have broken down, 1 hour or more. Garnish as desired. (This is not verbatim what Deborah Madison wrote, mind you—she also included stuff like soy sauce and croutons.)

  3. we had a pot of chili. hugs

    • Raising my spoon to you across the miles, Lisa. Much love to you and your family.

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