i was rising up

january 1st was the one year anniversary of the death of Lhasa De Sela, a musician who created with such beauty and passion and originality, it still leaves me speechless.

Lhasa

Lhasa

thinking about lives well lived makes me think about my own life. makes me wonder how well i’m living it. makes me wonder what i’m doing, who i’m becoming…and what parts will people find worth remembering.

2010 held a lot of things for me…a lot of beauty, yes…a lot of pain too. a lot of things that made me stop and think, re-think, be brave, give thanks. this past year spoke a lot of words. fragile. mystery. grace. fear. acceptance. delight. humility. courage. truth. trust. i tried to pay attention. to listen well. i hope i learned a thing or two. i hope some of the lessons start getting a little bit easier.

i wonder what this year will have to say? i wonder what story my life will tell? i hope it’s worth reading. i hope a year from now there is joy in looking back and remembering…

for now, i have today and the gift of newness. and i have these songs from this fiery soul who walked a winding road and who shared her joy till the very end. i heard it said today that Lhasa “giggled till she had no breath left…she giggled till the very end.” that made me smile.

may we find our ways to live our days fully, till we have no breath left.

Lhasa

Lhasa

delicate architecture

“Here is your delicate architecture

your fragile aliveness.”

– Maya Stein

……

a small show of new works

delicate 3

July 13th to 31st

.the silver bean cafe.

peterborough

when you lose something you can’t replace

heart

this day has held a lot of things.

long car rides.

a sweet babe.

hot sun.

polka dot ribbons.

purple lilacs.

the love of family.

friends who aren’t afraid of the journey.

spring rolls and cream dogs.

celebration.

tears.

dandelion crowns.

scrabble.

memories.

herstory.

the loss of of a woman who can’t be replaced.

and at one point

somewhere between here and there,

i heard this song

and it meant something to me on this day that was so full of so many things.

it met me somewhere

in the mumble jumble of questions and loss that were swirling inside

my belly,

my bones.

some days, it seems,  all you can do is grab tight to the little things that come drifting your way,

and say thank you.

any sign of her that lingers

grandma

this week has held a lot of songs

a lot of stories

a lot of things.

i’m going to let this song be for today.

stay hungry. stay foolish.

blue man

sometimes life’s going to hit you in the head with a brick.

don’t lose faith.

what does it take to fall in love with being alive?

canoe tim steve

i went and saw this film the other night. it tugged and pulled at my insides.

it’s been swirling around in my thoughts ever since.

little lines, pieces of thoughts…

…if you can’t befriend your own death, then how strongly in your life are you?

…what we all need to know is that we are not alone.

…the greatest skill we can bring to the dying is our capacity to be heartbroken.

…how do you live your dying every day?

i have all these notes that i  scribbled on paper in the dark while the film played. little snapshots to return to. to keep chewing on. there was so much crammed in that 70 minute documentary. so much more than i could take in or absorb.

i think the biggest idea from the film for me, the thing that i keep repeating to myself, is the idea that in order to really love my life,       i need to learn to love the end of it. in order to fully appreciate the gift, i need to embrace the truth that i won’t always have it.

some days i feel like i can do that.

other days it feels too big. too scary.

how do i learn to relax my grip?

when the waters are calm it feels easy to relax. but when storms blow in, when the precariousness of life, the heartache of death, are crashing all around us, how do we still hold this gift in open hands…?

how do we let go and not grab on?

how do we live gratitude, both in the middle and at the end?

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Words + Photos + Credit

Unless otherwise noted, all original photography and text are property of Raechelle Kennedy. If you see or read something here and feel inspired to share it somehow, please be considerate and give the artist (me!) credit, or even better, drop me a note and make sure I don’t mind.
Thank you!

Here + There

Secondhand Sainthood and the gift of losing it all – Topology Magazine, December 2015

Ten Things Made – Topology Magazine, December 2015

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