Just Life

And | June 2020.

from this morning’s walk

I’m sure everyone else is just as amazed as I am that we are half-way through this year. Never in our wildest dreams could we have imagined how this first half of 2020 might play out. I’m not even gonna guess about how the next six months might go. I’ve written before about AND being the perfect word for surviving a pandemic. and I think it’s also the perfect word for embracing the kind of action required to address systemic racism.

By its very nature, it’s additive. it invites abundance. it welcomes new ideas and other opinions. fundamentally, it MAKES ROOM.

Honestly, my actions this month seem lame by last year’s standards. I donated money. I read. I engaged in conversations that I would’ve avoided. I signed up for classes. I listened to podcasts.

I also started paying attention to where I spend my money AND I started listening to a LOT of new voices. mostly through Instagram* and I wanted to highlight a few of those new voices here.

First up – Morgan Harper Nichols (Instagram )

I am ACUTELY tuned into the word AND these days. and this frame, from her yesterday’s stories inspired the whole idea around this post. I cannot imagine myself getting a tattoo … but if I did, it would be “and in every moment there is grace”.

Next, Adrian Michael Green. I don’t remember where I found him, but I know he was intersectional – two folks I followed from (for me) completely different places both followed him. I paid attention after I saw this post.

and then I ordered two of his books. He promises they’ve shipped and I look forward to sharing more of this poetry.

and last The Stacks. Traci has a huge following and I’m only sad I didn’t know about this podcast sooner. Smart book talk … and also authors doing smart book talk. it’s awesome. I read and enjoyed my first true crime book thanks to her. (“thanks” in a good way. I think ?!)

*y’all – I see the issues with promos and ads on Facebook – and I know they translate to Instagram, but with few exceptions (gah, why can’t Denise Bayron use her own hashtag?!), I see Instagram as a Good Thing. I don’t know of ANY other platform that’s as welcoming and open to ALL voices. and I’ve learned a ton. maybe that means I had a ton to learn, but still.

HUGE thanks to Honoré for hosting this monthly meetup. Y’all keep me going. forward.

11 Comments

  • Carole

    Thanks for the recommendations on those Instagram accounts. And has really been a great word for you in this dumpster fire that is 2020.

  • Sarah

    I continue to be impressed by how you are making room for AND in your life — how you’re adding on and welcoming in. It seems like it’s even more important to do so given the pandemic and the limits we have on life.

    I’ve had some qualms about continuing to use IG given that it’s owned by Facebook (which I hate with a passion), but I still continue to use it. I feel like it is more inclusive and open and I can certainly control what I see better.

  • Karen

    I noticed your lovely new blog banner right away! You have a true gift for taking photos of yourself which I usually avoid!!! You are making such good “use” of your OLW this year. AND is a great choice for this time, although it might be one of the most versatile OLWs I can think of. Thanks for sharing.

  • Vera

    Nice new banner Mary! Very nice. Looks/sounds like AND is the perfect word for you this year. Looking forward to seeing where else it takes you.

  • kym

    (So far behind on the blog-reading this week. . . )
    I do think you have a perfect word for this year, Mary. (Although I’d kinda argue that all words are perfect words if we let them work their magic. . .) I notice MYSELF spotting “ands” this year, and I think of you each time. (And I agree with you about Instagram.)

  • karen

    love the banner as well! I am with you wondering what the next six months will be like! I’m sure it will be interesting… I like IG but I am only there a few times a week.

  • Jane

    I love the comment about “Grace in Every Moment.” My husband and I were just having a conversation about the idea of both/and. You are rocking that word. Your new banner looks great.