Every day for the last week and a half the Bay Area has woken up to the smell of smoke – an instant reminder that the North Bay is still burning, and that the lives of many of our Northern neighbors have been completely altered. At last count, 40 people had died, 217,000 acres of land had been ravaged, 75,000 people have had to evacuate, and 5,700 homes had been damaged or destroyed.
This on the heels of an already incredible month of hurricanes, a devastating earthquake, an unbelievable scene in Las Vegas, and while we’re at it, a series of high profile men in Hollywood and other places who are being outed by women who’ve had their fill of being sexually humiliated.
And this, on top of a life that already felt like it was flying out of a blender without its top on. My friends, and maybe yours, feel hurried, distracted. They can’t get their heads on. The best, most mindful people I know talk about needing to get into nature, and put their phones away. If only we could. Simply leaving the house for two hours without the phone becomes a triumph, a show of personal power. This is how it is for me.
It’s like some crazy rip tide taking us farther and farther from the shores of our own humanity.
Lately, I’m astounded that the simple act of sitting across from one another, knee to knee, phones down, has felt absolutely revolutionary. Like some ancient medicine called Me and You that is grounded in eye contact, and in speaking and listening to one another. Pretty damn simple medicine.
We practice this Me and You stuff around the Wild Writing table. Now more than ever, I’m especially amazed that we all take the time to gather and to write, to try and sort things out – on the page and off – together.
I’ve been teaching this work for nearly 20 years, and only in the last year have I began to understand that Wild Writing is more than just a writing practice, it’s a community healing practice, and right now it’s really showing its mettle. For me and for others, it’s been our anchor. Yes, our phones will get turned on soon again, but for two hours we will use our words, we will write, we will listen to each other, and in this way we will attempt to weave this frayed world back together, one word at a time.
This is the work I have the privilege of facilitating each week. It has become my life and I’m wanting to share it with more and more people, to spread the word so more folks can rely on it.
If something about this speaks to you and you have a yearning to circle up with people in your community, to become a leader, and to change the waters of your town, please consider joining me for the second Wild Writing Teacher Training, which starts up again in January. Wild Writing is also a perfect tool to add to the work you’re already doing with people as a coach, therapist or teacher. It’s an incredible way to help people to unpack what is living inside of them.
Registration opens today. I’ll take 10 people on a 5-month journey where I’ll share everything I know about starting a Wild Writing practice, creating a safe and creative community for people to do their deeper work, and what building a tidy little Wild Writing business might look like.
If you’re not ready to lead, but would like to start your Wild Writing practice, check out 27 Wild Days, my video series where I’ll take you on a month-long journey into the heart of the practice.