Wednesday, January 7, 2015


Last month when I was at power barre...

Back up.

Guys, I went to a legit power barre class. IT'S THE EXACT OPPOSITE OF EVERYTHING I AM OR WILL EVER BE. My friend Jolene made me do it. I loved it and hated it, but at the end of the day, I loved it. But I hated it.

The good news is, the hole in the butt of my only pair of yoga pants is finally the size of a quarter so I guess I can't go back until I buy new ones. Modesty and dignity and all that.

Never in my life have I been less motivated to shop online, and I'm not just saying that because the only "tall" yoga pants I know of are sold through Victoria's Secret.

Anyway, after a set of crazy-crazy songs with booming back-beats and strange "luxury hotel" lyrics, the instructor turned all the lights down to tiny blips and we stretched to a song I'd never heard, Let's Be Still by The Head and the Heart.

It's entirely possible this is presently the most popular song in the land. Don't feel bad if you can't stop yourself from saying something like, "Shannan! What is wrong with you? What do you mean you've never heard that song?" I won't feel bad about it. It's my lot in life to be behind the times exactly enough that I'm fully aware of my awkwardness.

Yada yoga, I loved the song. It stuck with me.
I thought it was resonating with me so much because it was two weeks before Christmas, and because strenuous activity makes my body sad.

Come to find out, it's January 7th, and I still keep singing it in my head. The lyrics instantly lower my blood pressure and remind me I always have a choice. Sometimes the right thing is to run and respond and react and rage. Sometimes it's to grab the fuzziest blanket and close the door.

Last night I had a margarita with one of my favorite homegirls after a PTO meeting and with so much kindness in her eyes, she asked if I was okay. It took me off guard, because I view myself as almost irrationally chill about life. A therapist (not my own, long story) once asked me what caused my "emotional detachment" and I promptly left the room and never went back.

I mean, potato, potahto. What she saw as emotional detachment I see as the uncanny ability to remain calm almost all the time unless there's blood involved in which case I WILL FREAK.

But the feelings wedged deeply inside, the ones I bat around and smooth over and tidy up, they eventually come out and this space is often the scene of the crime, if you will.

It's a hard knock life around here. We're surrounded by hurting people, and contact burns are real.
We've spent and spent and spent in the most satisfying ways over the past month, now and then feeling the deficits.

But life is so, so good. The hard stuff is the best stuff.
Stretching means changing. Moving means growing.

We're readier than ever to grab life by its ears and kiss its face off.

But just for a moment, let's be still. You know?
It's the only way to weather this weird existence.

Today already feels like a freight train. There's so much to do, so much shifting around and deadlines and meetings and...and...and...the best starting point I can think of is to simmer a pot of chicken stock for four hours.

Everything past my window is bright white and the sun is making me so happy.

Let's do what we gotta do today. Get it done. Signed, sealed delivered. Etc...
But leave some space to putter around in argyle socks and read another chapter of the book you just started.

I'm unilaterally giving you permission to do whatever it takes to keep your heart light today.
Barring narcotics.

The world's just spinning
A little too fast
If things don't slow down soon we might not last.
The world's not forgiving
Of everyone's fears.
The days turn into months the months turn into years.
So just for a moment, let's be still