March was a mad month.

Twisting and turning with an energy that had me here one moment, over there the next, then there, now here, then again.

I am living the reality that contemplating a move, making the decision to move, then experiencing the steps of that move are different beasts entirely, each one coming with its own rules for handling and care.

I cried 2 weeks ago as I cleaned out large tubs of dance costumes spanning 36 years of my life, feeling the scope of all that I am giving up, only to turn around scant days later and be completely reassured that it is entirely okay to let it go.

We must learn to release things if we ever want to have space to grow into something new.

I looked at pictures of our December Germany trip fondly, then realized- I don’t own a single article of clothing I have on in those photos, so many things I have already donated, released, and given away.

How much more stuff is to come I wonder?

As such, I am soaking in the decorations in my house tonight, relishing in all my personal items, for in a couple of weeks we are going to begin packing up, selling, and decluttering things, so it is clean and spacious when it goes on the market in May.

Goodbye dance, goodbye things, goodbye home, goodbye old self; I have literally been “all the feels” this mad, mad month of March.

I raged at my brother in my mind today- how dare he die and turn my life upside down. Cried over all the recent policies coming down the pike in this country, drowning in a sense of helpless impotence. Wrote another poem about the environment wondering if the words make a difference, even as I believe and know they do.

Had my heart flutter in happiness over an unexpected connection with a kindred. Gently, but tiredly, told a well meaning friend to stop sending me propaganda for the president, as I find it stomach turning.

Got my feelings hurt over somebody correcting a typo on a piece of art I posted on social media. Then got angry, thinking- you try putting yourself out there and see how crappy and vulnerable you feel when somebody comes along and criticizes your efforts.

Then I bought some comfort doughnuts, instead of a healthy lunch, and had a long conversation with the dog about life, change, and how much better his arthritis is going to feel in Kauai.

All the feels, all the day, all the month. My skin becoming naked tissue paper the more I release, the more I unravel, the less I have to hide behind.

And all I want to say about all of that tonight is that it is absolutely, satisfyingly freeing to be all those things and know them all as valid. To be mad at my brother, to be sad at life, to have hurt feelings, to have a hopeful heart. To know that none of those emotional experiences are less than or more than.

They are just part of me.

I promised myself that I would practice exquisite self-kindness as this move came closer. Knowing I would probably feel messy and imperfect and ping pongy and stressed and excited and a million shades of everything. Knowing all those feeling are a reflection of life right now.

Knowing life, and I, don’t have to look a certain way.

I don’t believe in judging our experience of self. But I do believe in being kind to ourselves wherever we find ourselves. I do believe that kindness is the gateway to self-love. That self-love is the gateway to compassion and to loving others with more grace and mercy.

And I do believe that whenever we try and entreat with life from this space (no matter how imperfect our efforts may be) we are being the love we are called to be in this world.

The other day I sort of collapsed inwards after a domino effect of busy and requests and overwhelm and too much. I’m so tender and strewn all over and deconstructed in these moments. So very different than the organized self who has such a good front person running the show.

There is a small peep from an imprint of an imprint of an imprint of an inner critic whose residue is left from long ago- she starts to say something about pulling it together, but another voice who has grown much stronger supersedes her reach.

She gently enters my mind’s eye, dabs the mental tears, smooths aloe on the hurting heart, and straightens the crooked pictures hanging in my psyche.

Just be kind, she says.

Just be kind.