A whirlwind of a week + a weekend at the lake = a better start to this week, even if my body decided on Sunday night that my attempt to go to sleep early was a JOKE and I really needed to lay awake in my bed until 2am. COOL.
The Arctic Suicides: It's Not The Dark That Kills You: I spent two summers while in college in a village in rural Alaska, and while it is an absolutely stunning place in so many ways, there are many dark aspects as well. Suicide was something that had touched nearly every life I knew, whether in their own family or someone in their community, and this article speaks to so much of the why behind such a heartbreaking thing. If you are in a dark place and feel alone, please stay. You are so important. If you feel as though there isn't anyone around you who you can talk with, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
An Inclination Toward Warmhearted Inclusivity: Individuals who may be seen as "different" or "other" have been an incredibly important role in my life, and I would be an entirely different person without their presence in my life. Sometimes we tend to see people with disabilities as inspirations, as they live their lives, but especially after watching this TED talk, I don't want to always immediately make them inspirations. They are humans living their life, but living their lives with any sort of disability isn't what makes them an inspiration. They are more than their disability, and we ought to not make that their only defining feature. I loved this piece from On Being, taking a look at how one individual with autism shares his experience, and what they have to show us in all sorts of situations.
Adulthood In The US Has Nothing To Do With Age Anymore: As a semi-recent college grad, I feel SO MANY of the things in this article. With talk of "adulting" alllll over the place, it can seem very hard to say you are an adult in this day and age when you've got mountains of student loan debt and finding a job is a full-time job and trying to find moderately priced apartments to RENT, without even remotely thinking of buying a place. But as the author of this article points out so beautifully, being an adult is "appreciating the bifurcation between the rational and the emotional, and knowing when and how to use each. It's an ability to love and be loved. It's empathy. It's kindness. It's tolerance. It's a grasp of one's faults and limitations combined with a concomitant desire to transcend them. It's self-acceptance. It's self love." Not that any of those are easier to find or accomplish than more traditional "adult" responsibilities, but it is nice to be reminded of more options.
The Evolutionary Origins Of Laughter Are Rooted More In Survival Than In Enjoyment: Laughter is such a weird and wonderful thing, and I think history and data and research are super cool. I am a nerd, and this article is fascinating!
The History Of The Universe Is Written On The Ocean Floor: You thought that laughter piece was nerdy?? Try this one! Space, ocean, supernovas, sediment, climate change - watch out.
In Residence: The Staves (Episode 3): The Staves are back with their podcast of talking about and playing some of their favorite music, and this episode focuses on heartbreak. Maybe I got a little teary from cutting onions for a frittata while listening, maybe it was the music, maybe it was both?
Listened to a lot of Hamilton while driving to the lake. No apologies. Also no surprise. Also I was outside a lot this weekend, and didn't listen to much besides nature. Go do that!!
Part 8: My friend Haylie is a part of this dance company (Backbone Dance Co.), and every time she posts their work, I watch slack-jawed in absolute awe. This time, I STOPPED eating my Toaster Strudel to watch. No regrets. They will blow you away.
6 Things You Should Say To Your Soulmate Every Single Day: Another from the indomitable Nora McInerny Purmort, here are some suggested things you can say to your soulmate/favorite humans/cat every day. Love is the best thing we've got. Cling to it while you've got it, whether it comes in the form of a partner or a best friend or a friendly neighbor or a kind stranger or a laughing baby. (And if you haven't preordered her book, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?? Do it! Now! Here!)
When Breath Becomes Air: The Perfect Book At The Perfect Time: I've heard so much about this book, and after reading Courtney Martin's blog post about it, it's moved to the top of my Amazon book list. As she so beautifully writes, "No, we don’t write our own stories. No, we don’t have ultimate control. But we do have agency to make our time count. And it follows that we can’t make our time count if we are sitting around, paralyzed by the fear of losing those we love. There is meaning in contemplating the fragility of life, but you can’t dwell here too long or you lose track of the opportunity to make meaning in the midst of all the fragility."
May your weeks be full of stories and music, goggling at how cool the universe is, and telling the people in your life those really really important things.