Presence On Land

There is nothing to be done but to be in this body. I don’t believe my body is trying to kill me. I think my body is wanting me to live. My body wants me to

I have spent the last ten days recuperating at my home, letting myself be taken care of by my community and my very special boyfriend. I’ve learned to let people help me in a way that is starting to feel less and less terrifying and more and more normal. I will still continue the self-talk to get myself to get used to it, but it’s progress.

This afternoon, in anticipation of re-entering the school/work/Covidlandia world, I started to get extremely anxious. I was feeling pent up and sad and jittery and upset. I climbed in bed and cried for a half hour. My breasts both ache now, and it felt good to lie in my sheets. But the crying started to make me sad and feel pitiful. Then I tried lying on my yoga mat in my PJs and did some “lie here and feel still and practice focusing on that crack in the ceiling” meditation, allowing myself to just move in and out of focus. I switched it up and just told myself “feel what you are feeling.”

I am feeling alright. I am feeling a lot of things.

My uncle suggested I get myself outside today. I told him how much I love Four Dances, and so Korra and I got in the truck and drove there. I almost just did a neighborhood walk again, but that definitely has a different energy. When we go to Four Dances Korra can mostly be off leash and I can mostly be maskless. When we see people/dogs in the distance we leash/mask up.

I put on my cool music mix I made for running, clipped her off leash, and we hiked through the tall grasses and the sage. This part of Montana is magical and I do not say that lightly. Yes, it is very brown. It is a complete 180 from where I grew up, in the NW corner of the state. I grew up in a forest, and this area is famous for dinosaur bones and massive rocks. The plants even have a dinosaur energy, and everything about this land feels ancient because it is ancient.

I don’t know if I’ve had such a connection to land in my adult life. I had a sliver of a glimpse of it on the property I had in my old life with my ex in Junction City. The Willow tree there and the old barn were just so idyllic. Sadly, I was never present in myself enough to truly lay down roots, and as I’ve written, things just weren’t good. I didn’t plant a garden and I had over an acre. One does not plant seeds when they don’t feel settled.

This summer I collected a few seed pods from agave and sunflowers growing wild around Billings and I’m going to plant them in the ground and plant some in pots in the late winter. I have a pretty solid plan to grow a native plants garden, but it’s going to take a lot of work, and probably some fencing to keep the pesky animals out. (That would be my domesticated ones. They are garden pests.)

Nature gave me back my hopefulness this afternoon. It was spectacularly beautiful and the kind of day that is basically perfect for Billings standards. It was 64 degrees and last Sunday it was around 20. The sky was a giant show off and the whole scene was a just a big Bob Ross painting.

So it doesn’t really matter that I have to wear a bra that’s really a corset every day and makes my breasts look even bigger. It also doesn’t matter that I’m still learning to live more deeply in gratitude and thanks.

What I need to do for myself now is to practice self-acceptance for whatever it is I’m feeling and to just feel it. I want to show up as the best friend to myself like I really never have.

I had a little infinitesimal spark of the sinking in to the self-love a few days ago. I was thinking about mindfulness and body awareness and then I just had this odd moment of stillness. I thought “you can’t research this. You just do it.” And for a second, I just did it.

Go now.

Practice the Stop.





Feel what your body feels.

And let it all be.


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