finding new rhythms??
Hey! Here’s what I got for ya in today’s email:
Some thoughts about finding my rhythm or finding something else instead
Studio updates – stoles galore, reintroducing a workshop offering, etc! scroll down to skip right to these.
It has been about a month since Ryan and I have been living in Texas. I miss my family in Virginia big time, and I also love it here. I love being near Ryan’s family. I love that we have friends here (!!!) and new relationships, communities, and connections to learn and build. Life looks different now than it did before, the sheer force of the Texas sun (queue up “Texas Sun” by Khruangbin and Leon Bridges if you haven’t already) not least among these differences. But at the same time, the day-to-day rhythms of life look pretty similar. I’m still waking up, making coffee (albeit in a nicer coffee maker, thanks to beloved friends who bought it for us off our wedding registry), procrastinating on the things I need to do, making art through spurts of inspiration, scrolling TikTok through periods of apathy, stressing when I get close to a deadline for which I haven’t aptly prepared…you get the picture.
The “life will be easier/better/simpler when…” fallacy is one that gets me EVERY time. I think I’m savvy enough to see it coming, and then I fall into its trap yet again. Making big life changes can feel so hopeful, like one of these things may just be the cog that clicks into place and makes the whole machine of my life run smoother.
But in my experience so far, it usually doesn’t work like that. Maybe that’s because life isn’t a machine? I don’t think that’s so novel a thought, but perhaps worth reminding myself (and you, if it resonates). “Finding my rhythm” is a huge, mysterious, elusive goal that I feel like I’ve been working toward since forever. I can’t remember a time that I didn’t wish I could just settle into that rhythmic ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk of a well-oiled machine that knows just what to do and when. To my anxiety-ridden brain, the idea of a rhythmic, routined life feels like a cool breeze on a hot summer day. But this fantasy rhythmic life is also devoid of the human stuff. When I imagine this life where I ka-chunk, ka-chunk, ka-chunk through my to-do list with ease and grace, I don’t imagine myself experiencing grief, sadness, fear, or anger, or even joy and laughter. And I’ll be darned if real-life me doesn’t experience something off that list every hour or so.
Basically, in my desire to feel contentment consistently in my life, I have put all my eggs in the “finding my rhythm” basket, which means there’s always something that could be better, smoother, easier...something else to FIND. That’s exhausting, y’all. It is so damn hard to work constantly to make life easier and/or worry about how life isn’t easy enough.
So, what’s the solution? Ha! You thought I was going to wrap this up in a nice little bow. I have no idea what the solution is. I don’t want to completely throw out the idea of settling into a nice rhythm in life. The structure of routine is still very appealing to me, unorganized and inconsistent though I am. I just don’t want to idealize finding my rhythm as the thing that will save me. I want to be non-anxious when there isn’t so much of a rhythm to follow, when I’m still in the process of working out my priorities and boundaries and best practices. I want to be truly, deeply okay with being a work in progress without overly focusing on the progress part.
So perhaps next time I hear myself talking/thinking about the need to find my rhythm, I’ll remember to say to myself, “stop searching and striving and idealizing, dear one. It’s okay to just be here right now.”
But anyway, I am writing this as a way of avoiding working on a project that I really ought to have finished yesterday, so I’m going to get back to that. See what I mean?
That’s life. It’s okay.
From the Studio
It’s ordination season!
If you or a beloved friend/family member/mentee/congregant/colleague is getting ordained, being installed in a congregation, graduating from seminary, or otherwise celebrating and you would like to order a custom clergy stole to honor the occasion, please reach out! I’m currently booking for mid-June delivery times. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, and you can find an overview of my custom stole process (including info about pricing) at molliedonihe.com/stoles. While you’re there, check out the small selection of ready-to-wear stoles I currently have available!
Calling all quilters/quilters-to-be…
If you’ve been hanging around here for a while, you may remember that I led a couple of online workshops in early-COVID times on quilting as a spiritual practice. I want to do it again! I haven’t settled on dates yet, but we had two really incredible groups last time, and I’m ready for some of that crafting-in-community goodness again.
This workshop does include instructional content, but the group gatherings are centered around reflecting on the process and the rich metaphors found in quilting that are applicable to our spiritual lives, communal and individual. Here are a couple of bullet points about it:
Six 1-hour gatherings via zoom, 1 per week for 6 weeks. (I would also love to do one in person at some point, so if you’re in DFW and that appeals to you, please let me know.)
The workshop is appropriate for complete beginner and seasoned quilters alike. Seriously! Yes, that means you. The instruction is mostly asynchronous via pre-recorded video and beginner friendly, so you can learn quilting fundamentals, brush up on the basics of hand-quilting, or just as a guide on pacing your project along with the group.
We’ll be working on a small coaster-sized piece and doing all of the sewing by hand. No fancy machines or equipment required. Side note: If hand-sewing is not physically accessible to you (because of arthritis, any disability, or whatever reason) and you still want to participate, no worries! You and I can work together to make sure you get the most out of the workshop while honoring your body’s needs.
Most of the materials are things you can already find around your house. No need to purchase fancy quilting fabric! An old dress shirt or pillow case will do just fine. I may have materials kits available too for purchase, which would include everything you’d need for the workshop, if that is of interest to folks.
The cost will be $45, which includes 6 group sessions, instructional quilting videos, and weekly emails with reflection prompts. Payment plans are available.
So if that sounds cool to you, respond to this email, DM me on instagram, or email me at email@example.com! I would love to get a virtual group together to start sometime in June.
Visio Divina deck update
Thank y’all so much for your patience while the Sacred Seams deck has been out of stock on my website. Unsurprisingly, there have been some supply chain issues. Adding that onto our move across the country has made it tough for me to stock them. BUT—the decks have been reordered! They should all arrive at my doorstep sometime next week, fingers crossed. I’ll keep you posted as they are available once again!
That’s all I got, y’all. Thanks for reading all my blabbering. If you’re interested in connecting in any of the ways I mentioned, please do let me know. And no matter where or how you find yourself today, take good care.
With so much love,
You can find more about me and my work at molliedonihe.com, and you can subscribe to this public journaling practice at molliedonihe.substack.com. You can also find me @molliedonihe on Instagram. Glad you’re here!