2014: Mid-Year Review (more weeding/less planting)

cropped-cropped-cropped-v1_at_800.jpgIt’s the last day of June. Time to reflect back and imagine forward…

My desk calendar, The Sacred Journey, invites a listing of highlights and insights for the month. Among mine is time at Kripalu where I cultivated an understanding of devotion, and brought that forward as a lens into my life’s work including the memoir I began in 2012.

Next, the calendar invites a listing of opportunities and goals for the new month.  In this process, I realize that one of the main goals that I have for July is not having a goal.

I can feel something new emerging, and I want to be sure to leave space for it to grow. More weeding. Less planting.

July 1st also marks the turning point of the year, and as so, the calendar devotes 5 (FIVE!) blank pages for a mid-year review…

I feel daunted by this space, and consider calling a friend to help fill it, but the kids will be home from camp in less than an hour, and I haven’t showered yet, so I’m on my own.


When I look back, I see my oldest returning for the second semester of his freshman year. I see myself setting off for a  winter writing week at a friend’s home. I see an unexpected family trip to the shore for a funeral.  I see new opportunities growing and the bittersweet ending of another, capped by a journey to the city to participate in a women’s global event at the United Nations.

In this stretch of time from January to June, I have guided 9 women on a writing journey. I have led dance most every week. I have practiced yoga. I have embarked on 3 unimaginable returns to Kripalu, exploring health and devotion, and loosening the dense weight (mind, body and soul) of 50 years of life.

I’m not sure what to do with all that. What do make of it. How to assign meaning to the first half of 2014 in order to help shape the second.

I sense an undefinable restlessness inside. A need to fly. To break loose. To recreate. To heighten.

I feel how easy it would be to avoid those complex urges, and to stay with what I know. Nose down. Focused. Moving forward. Repeating. Patterning my days after that which has already come.

It’s been a hearty half-of-a-year; isn’t that enough?

Why must I always seek something more?

And how do I find it?

(And what about you? What has the first-half of 2014 brought your way? And what does the second-half beckon?)

Too Much of a Good Thing?

Schrieck, visipix.com

Several years ago, I realized that I was missing. After more than a decade as a wife and mother, I couldn’t locate my own pulse.  When my youngest turned 5, I knew it was time.

“I have a good life,” I said to a group of women around a fire, “Two beautiful children, a wonderful partner, a strong community… but it isn’t enough.”

“We can’t have everything, Kelly,” said another mother, “We have to be grateful…”

“But I want it ALL,” I replied.

I spent the next few years in search of what was missing.

And guess what?

I found it.

I emptied a book-case, cleared a desk, set up chairs, bought a table–and created an office just for me.

At first I was a writer, and then because I was afraid it (or I?) wasn’t enough, I added life coaching, and then dance. Soon I was offering workshops and retreats and classes.

Next I explored activism, and blogging, and travel. I participated in rallies, joined an online writer’s group, and facilitated an international conference in Chile.

I began avoiding my office…

Most recently, I committed to a year-long yoga teacher training program, hoping that it would help deepen me into that which I have. When I returned home after the first weekend of training, I was overwhelmed by how much work lie ahead. “Where am I going to put all these books?” I said to my husband.

“Well, you can’t put them in your office,” he said, “It’s already overcrowded.”

I took a look. I can’t remember the last time I really worked in there. The horizontal surfaces are piled with debris; and underneath it all, I find binders and bins and boxes filled with the endeavors I embraced along the way… to me.

Only now, they’re so heavy, I can’t breathe.

At the end of that first weekend of training, we’re asked to come up with a year-long Master Project and share it with the group. I’m shocked by what I choose, and almost heartbroken by what I don’t–not a single one of my new-found passions or even the book that I “just had to write” last year.

I tell my classmates that what I want to accomplish is this:

…playing with my son.

Kelly Salasin, January 2012