strength

The bond we share

The bond we share

April 17, 2020
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There’s always connection. That’s the default. It is not something we have to create, to work hard at, to make happen.
It is there. Always and already.

And yet… with some, there’s more connection.
With some, there’s a knowing, a depth, a strength, that goes above and beyond.

It can only be, if it is mutual.
It is not enough for one party to feel this. Not possible.
It has to be felt by both.

Since 2015 I have been acting legal guardian for unaccompanied minors, and my first ever minor is still with me.
And boy is he with me. The bond we share is one of those. The one with more.

(Just to paint the picture for you, I am legal guardian, which does not mean that he lives with me. I am not responsible for day-to-day care but rather my role is to ensure his rights are protected, that he has someone who looks out for him with regards to being granted residency, citizenship, proper schooling and the likes.)

We met up today. It doesn’t happen that often, but today there was some official business to be done. We had a lovely couple of hours together, with lots of talk and laughter. As we said goodbye we hugged (yes. In Coronatimes. We did. We always do, and it’s always on his terms.). I whispered I am so happy I got to be your legal guardian. He strengthened his grip on me and responded.

So am I.

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Lovingkindness, a way to let go of hesitation and fear

February 29, 2020
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Three days a week, there’s a prompt in The Creative’s Workshop. Something to ponder, to reflect and act upon, to respond to. Prompt number 8 called for action, and as much as it scared me, at first, once done, I’d shed a ton of anxiety and hesitation. 

This sentence hit’s the bullseye. Spot on. Hurtfully so:
It’s not that you can’t organize and ship a minimum lovable product. It’s simply that you’re hesitating.

You see, I want to do more with #tankespjärn than I have been doing so far, and yes I am afraid. I am hesitant. I fear failure.

Deep inhalation!
Letting it out.

Lovingkindness.
Breathe in love. Breathe out fear.
Breathe in strength. Breathe out hesitation.
Breathe in determination. Breathe out fear of failure.
Breathe in courage. Breathe out poor excuses.
Breathe in words from the Angel’s advocate. Breathe out words from the Devil’s advocate.
Breathe in just do it. Breathe out procrastination.

That’s what I wrote. To get myself ready to do the work the prompt actually called for, which was to make a list of steps that will take me (closer) to what it is I want to create, and then list what I need to do to make each step a reality. 

After spending 15-20 minutes on it, there I was, with a list of five steps with a number of actionable to-dos for each one. And all of a sudden, anxiety and hesitation are replaced with a sensation informing me that This is doable!

 

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The Swan Thieves (book 1 of 12)

January 30, 2020
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in Tip
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“It was as if he simply did not know how not to be himself, and I felt his selfhood go down through me like lightning–I who doubted and second-guessed and analyzed every second of my own life.”

Started reading one of the books on my reading challenge… but was somehow drawn to pick up The Swan Thieves by Elisabeth Kostova instead. And why resist? If a book is calling to me, why not go with the flow?

“But most women were remarkably strong, I’d always thought; those who healed themselves were full of a deeper life afterward.”And how I loved this book. Thick, deliciously thick; weaving together now with then, through the eyes of not one, not two, but many more. Once I finished it, I gave the book 5 stars on Goodreads, only to have my eyes fall upon a couple of reviews by other readers. Some low ratings, and then, a very interesting 4- or 5-star review saying something along the lines of understanding the low ratings, as “nothing really happens” in the book. That got me thinking… and I agree. It is a very slow novel, with a lot of technicalities into the art of painting, about colors and brush-technique and fading light… and yet. What I love about it is just that. I am given a glimpse into the ordinary day-to-day-life of not just the main character, but of his wife, his psychiatrist, his art student, and of others, such as not just one, but at least two, and in a sense, even three artists, of a century long since passed.

Then there are the beautiful passages that I’ve marked.
And others that I simply let enter me as my eyes gently span page after page, sentence after sentence.

I love how I can find a sentence or two, or longer passages, that speak to me, in basically any book I read. Speak to my sense of aesthetics, curiosity, to my longing for romance, love, human touch. Sometimes making me connect dots to other books, other pieces of fact, of questions or ponderings I have. Sometimes tapping into my sense of justice, outrage; making me cry, laugh, strive to do, to be, better at being me, of letting more of me out, refraining from holding myself back.

“It’s a shame for a woman’s history to be all about men–first boys, then other boys, then men, men, men. It reminds me of the way our school history textbooks were all about wars and elections, one war after another, with the dull periods of peace skimmed over whenever they occurred. […] I don’t know why women so often tell stories that way, but I guess I’ve just started to do the same thing myself […].”

The Swan Thieves is a story of strength. Of skill and talent.
Of love, of sleuthing, of daring to live. Or not.
Of hope. Longing. Courage.

“Aren’t there things greater than public censure, things that ought to be attempted and cherished?”

Yes.
There is.
And to do so requires me to be me. And you to be you.


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2020, to read and blog monthly about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, books that I already own.

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2020 – with my body in focus

January 1, 2020
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These past years, the intention of the coming year has come to mind around New Years, when I’ve been busy gathering my thoughts on the experiences of the year past, high’s and low’s alike, to sum up, and clean my slate for what is to come. The intention for 2020 came to me a couple of months ago, when I, in a moment of total clarity, just knew that it is with my body in focus that I will start off the new decade.

With my body in focus Is as yet undefined. I will not write a detailed list of exactly what I will be doing this year, like a minimum of x runs/bike trips/swims/walks/gym sessions per week/month/year and so on. No. Not like that. Because I do not know. Instead, I will play around with my body as the theme, the challenge is (being gentle with myself, not to worry about that) to develop more strength, suppleness, endurance. I want to better my ability to stand on one leg, to squat, to get a stronger and supple back that can sleep in beds not my own without causing me pain, want to be able to do proper and more sit-ups and push-ups, chin-ups och pull-ups, want to build strength and movement in my feet and get rid of the big toe joint pains I suffer since biking into a rock foot first, November 2018. I will dance lindy hop as much and often as I can, both taking classes and attending social dance’s, and more than anything, I will take regular movement-breaks when I do what I am doing right now: sitting in front of the computer.

Last year’s intention As I am was easy to follow up on a monthly basis, precisely because I’d written it so detailed and specific. Even though this intention is far from just that, I still want to commit to a monthly follow up on with my body in focus because it’s such a good way to keep the intention top of mind. I will surely reflect on the actual facts of what I’ve done each month, the number of kilometers on my bike and on foot I’ve been logging since September 2009, so that type of data (and habit!) is easily accessible. But I want to compliment my monthly reflections with what I experience, the feelings the theme awakens within, the differences I observe and what it means to me.

So.
With my body in focus, I start 2020 by taking a walk down to lake Boren for the first cold bath of the year as well as the decade.

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