Like LAST YEAR, I didn’t mail cards this year. Let’s pretend like that is some sort of reducing my carbon footprint “value action” instead of just me being too robustly engaged in life to keep up with the little details, OK?
So, here’s my holiday letter. Hope it finds you well and that you appreciate lugging one less piece of paper to the recycling center. I shall now execute the requisite parts of the holiday letter, also known as the well wishing, the bragging, and the plug.
The Well Wishing
Love love love to you and yours. I hope you are healthy and happy and well, and if you aren’t that you have the resources around you to get to that place. If I can be one of those resources, please let me know. If I have been one of the causes of your unhealthy, unhappy, unwellness, I’d like to know about that too.
My people are seriously awesome. I know everyone says that, but mine really are.
The big kid is applying to college, which means I’ve been doing that dance of trying to figure out 1) how to help, 2) how to let him find his own way, and 3) how to apologize when I don’t figure out 1 and 2 in an effective manner. Overall, I’m in awe of his mindfulness and honesty about how absurd the process is. I’ll not do the parent inventory of his other myriad and numerous accomplishments, instead I will share two of the privileges I’ve had this year that knocked me over. First, I’ve been lucky to get glimpses of how he is with his girlfriend – tender, intelligent, leaned in. I see so much of his Dad in his behavior, and note regularly to myself how lucky he is to have such a beautiful man as a role model. Second, even though he’s a thought-driven genius, this year he has cracked open a little doorway into the realization that there are some divine mysteries that are real, even if we can’t define them or graph them. That took me 41 years to learn, and I’m so proud that he has a leg up on me.
The little kid, who is in absolutely no way little anymore, has life by the reigns, like he always has. I’m regularly amazed at how such hipness could bubble up spontaneously from a kid begotten by two brainiacs. Last spring, he was literally Prince Charming, in a performance in the school play that everyone is still talking about. No surprise, this year he will be a prince again, this time Hamlet – but not the boring version, this is the parody version (made rated PG by his teachers) of Hamlet – Thrill Ma Geddon. On other fronts, I feel most grateful this year for the way he has acquiesced to being drug to “mom” things this year, including some stuff no teen should ever be so gracious to join. What cracks me up the most is his self awareness – telling me that he knows someday he’ll like saying he went to these things, but in the moment they really aren’t his first choice. Ha! Here’s a sampling: We meditated with Thich Nhat Hahn at Copley Square (then accidentally wandered into the smoke clouds at HempFest), caught hugs as my HAI friends marched by in the Pride parade, spent the day at 2 different yoga festivals, attended a sacred fire circle, and a wandered through the Path of Life garden in Vermont. One of his coping mechanisms has been to use Daron’s camera and the way this lets me see how he sees the world is really special.
Both boys have embraced an expansion of our family to include Daron, and I’m humbled by the abundance of healthy relationships and love everywhere I look.
And The Plug
Last year, I preached to you in my letter about The Human Awareness Institute, which continues to be a deeply important source of growth and community for me. This year, I’m going to indulge a little in some self promotion, but not really, it feels more like offering you a gift. Or two, I hope.
2014 will see the official launch of a product called Kangaroo, which I’ve been helping to curate from smart concept and intellectual property to a web experience. Kangaroo (and The McAloon Group) helps professionals with career transition. I naively expected that I could just help with e-publishing and editing; the truth is that the message in the content and the processes Kangaroo teaches are profoundly shifting my attitude toward work. Which leads me to my second plug:
2014 will also see me contributing more artistically. This started with slowly getting the nerve to do more poetry and story telling at some Open Mics in the Boston area and has lead to the self-publication of my first writing collection, The Goddess Rambles. This has me feeling vulnerable, excited and humble, with a sincere wish that someone finds the words that have come through me to be a source of comfort or enjoyment.