In When Things Fall Apart, Pema Chodron writes that “Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.”
I realized the truth of her words this past week. Something important—a lesson I keep thinking I’m finished with—returned to me. And without wishing to enfold the story in neat endnotes, I can say that I think I may finally have learned what I needed to know. A big chunk of it, anyway.
There’s more to this: lessons in healing, boundary setting, and getting free. I’ve learned about staying truthful and becoming a more fully realized version of myself. But what’s stuck with me is the fact that we can continue to encounter familiar struggles or wounds and still be moving forward in our process.
I sometimes greet the resurgence of an old challenge or hurt as a “setback,” but it doesn’t have to be. Not really. Instead, it can be an opportunity to face a familiar trigger in a new way.
When I was in ED recovery, I often found myself confusing recovery, or healing, with the inability to be triggered anymore. I was wrong. It’s not about being immune to triggers so much as feeling them as vividly as ever, yet finding new and more adaptive ways to handle them.
So here’s to facing the things we face, for however long we need to face them, and approaching them with just a little more clarity, honesty, and self-compassion each time. However maddeningly slow the process might feel, no matter how much patience it demands, it’s growth. And it matters.
Happy Sunday. Here are some recipes and reads.
Vibrant and refreshing Mediterranean collard wraps with pesto.
A simple masala curry that’s perfectly doable on weeknights.
I’ve made various iterations of rice that are inspired by my Greek heritage, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a recipe for Prasorizo, or rice with leeks, before. I’m excited to try this!
Speaking of rice, Deryn swaps farro for rice in this tasty fried farro dish with spinach and edamame.
1. An interesting discussion of how technology can make us more and less empathetic.
2. I’m really excited to read Lydia Denworth’s new book on the biology of friendship, and this review piqued my interest.
4. Confessions of a hermit crab rescuer.
5. If you didn’t happen to see the video this week, the Washington Post reports on now viral footage of an unlikely allegiance between a badger and a coyote.
Tomorrow, I’ll be sharing the chocolatey, just-in-time-for-Valentine’s-Day treat that I meant to share this past week. Stay tuned!
Happy Sunday, friends, and welcome to another weekend reading–our last pre-holiday edition of the year! I’m excited to share five scrumptious recipe links and five thought-provoking articles, as always. Let’s start with something light and snackable: an unusual baked kale chip recipe from Essential Vegan. Parsnips are among my favorite vegetables, and this rustic parsnip soup recipe is calling my name. I love the idea of a simple, rustic pasta dish with chickpeas and rosemary–so simple and hearty. An absolutely gorgeous herb-y millet…
On Tuesday night, my mom and I went to see a revival of The Music Man that’s on Broadway, starring Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster. This alone was something to celebrate, because for the few days before the performance, we weren’t sure that we could make it. My mom’s flu had been lingering, as flu often is, and we weren’t sure she’d be up to it. It was also the first Broadway show we’d seen together—something that we love doing as mother and…
Early this week, I was flipping through Yoga Journal and found an article from the magazine’s archives, written by Keith Kachtick, about impermanence. It was written in 2008; in it, Kachtick recalls being on a trip to Miami, shell-shocked by the realization that his marriage was ending. Ambling through South Beach by himself, he stumbled on an exhibition of Tibetan art and culture that featured six Buddhist lamas completing a sand mandala in public. “[I]t was the first moment of genuine ease I’d…
Years ago, a yoga teacher of mine said something in class that sounded obvious, but wasn’t: “when it can be easy, let it be easy.” I’ve mentioned her words on the blog before, so in the spirit of the quotation I won’t overanalyze it. But I will tell you that her advice has helped to guide me through this period of anxiety. It’s been especially helpful in the last week. On Sunday evening, after I vented about my overwhelm here on the blog,…