“I can't die. Bill Clinton needs all the democrats he can get.”
The air was pungent, filled with the sweet and soft smells of a southern summer as we sat on Kelly’s front porch watching fireflies light up the darkness.
Kelly was telling me the story of how her mother almost~ or rather did ~ die while giving birth to her younger brother. “She said she was hovering above her body, watching the doctors and nurses rush around, and when she realized she was thinking of politics (it was right before Clinton’s first election) she started laughing. And that is what brought her back into her body.”
Laughing at herself.
“My mom told me that story in a really dark moment in life. Sometimes you just need to look at what there is… and laugh,” Kelly eyed me. “Are you thinking about death a lot?”
“It’s hard not to. We’re living through the 6th mass extinction after all,” I answered.
“Even my 6 year old is thinking about it, she said. "Last week he asked me if I thought humanity is going to end soon. And when I asked how he thought it would end, he answered we’d either die from climate change or nuclear war.”
It seems in right action to pause when we discover that our children are considering the end of humanity.
On that note… might I suggest a beauty break and that you open another window to listen to the glorious music created by the one and only Arianna Savall while enjoying the rest of this storyletter? (click here in case you missed the cue.)
I don't know about you, but all of the big moments I have experienced have been made up of little moments that didn’t feel like much. It wasn’t until later, when we dressed the moments up with context and meaning that they became big moments.
The big moments are minutes are waiting on a clock on the date you place a lot of expectation around, and you really want them, more than any other, to be good moments. But some of the most impactful big moments really suck…in the moment…and only become the ingredients for legacy when you look back.
And yet, there are so many great moments that saunter by when you aren’t looking for fabulous, have no expectation for epic, and so they can fly by… under the radar…under appreciated.
I had the pleasure of seeing The Art of Courage a few months ago. Of course now it carries a different round of meanings in our most recent state of affairs since the film tells one of the stories of the creation of the 100% Renewable art piece created at the Paris UN Climate Talks from last year. I think you can see my hand in one of the scenes.
It was a big moment by any standard.
These are listening times.
When you need to read the signs and look for what’s living between the lines.
So soften your focus, escape the confines of literalism, and act like a tracker might when she or he is trying to catch the scent of wild animal on the run. Best I can tell, that is where the path to sanity might be found.
Want To Bring a Storytelling Event or Workshop to Your Hometown?
I’m planning the fall schedule and now is a grand time to tell me if you want to bring a storytelling event or workshop to your community.
Let’s get the conversation started here.
To wet your whistle here are a few things that are available:
- Myth, Magic, & Medicine Storytelling for a New Paradigm A 2 day workshop
- How to Tell Stories Designed To Transform The World: This workshop has been done in corporate settings and classes.
- Good Old Fashion Storytelling Skills: This class is designed for people who want to master the art of storytelling
- Storytelling Alchemy: These gatherings use story combined with a unique group process to improve empathy and build community. Examples of topics that have been worked with in the past include rights of passage, love & betrayal, and forgiveness. These work for intimate gatherings as well as office trainings.
- She Rises: A New Story for a New Paradigm explores the state of climate and politics through a mythic lens.
- Soul Story Oracle Circles: Easier to explain once you’ve experienced one. A story is channeled in the moment as the participants unpack and apply the symbols and mythic context to their life circumstances. Great to do with a community, yoga studio, birthday celebration, or any other purpose you dream up.
Solstice Soul Story Special
In honor of the longest day of the year, I am offering a 1.5 hour Solstice Soul Story Special for $111 (normally $250). This special is available for sessions that are booked by June 21st. You can learn more about these one of a kind story created just for you at medicinestories.com.
White Ally Tool Kit:
This tool kit was created by David Campt (aka the race doctor), advisor to Clinton's race relations committee. “Research says there are ways to reduce racial bias. Calling people racist is not one of them.”
This documentary introduces Stephen Jenkinson, who has been at the deathbed of well over 1,000 people. What he sees over and over, he says, is "a wretched anxiety and an existential terror" even when there is no pain. Indicting the practice of palliative care itself, he has made it his life's mission to change the way we die - to turn the act of dying from denial and resistance into an essential part of life.
A small book filled with sharp tongued essays and insights about what often goes wrong in conversations between men and women.
May you find your way to laughter through the big and small moments, may you remember to return to your body when you are needed most, and may we cross paths again sooner than later,
A word (or two) about Patreon... Want to play a part in bringing more art into the world? I’m working away on The Whale Dreamer~ and am traveling with a small but mighty group of people ~ sharing the intimacies of what it is to write a book and create a campaign designed to engage the next generation of ocean and land stewardship. I share special treats with Patrons, such as the latest story recorded on audio, The Day I Married A Polar Bear, recorded at CDM Studios.