Tag: Relationships

Presence

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“For it is in giving that we receive.” ―St. Francis of Assisi

My birthday is next week. I go big for birthdays.  And spare me ramblings and rumblings of “when you’re older you won’t care as much.” Birthdays are my thing.

As I age I confess to one celebratory challenge, which is presents. I struggle on what to buy loved friends. I’m equally perplexed when others inquire as to what I’d like to receive. Throughout the year I keep a running list of fun gadgets or indulgences that catch my eye, but I don’t necessarily label things as gift-worthy. Yes, I need a new hair straightener. True, I am always in favor of Amazon gift cards. And one can never go wrong with pinot noir. But do I want to receive these as gifts? Let me be clear, I won’t say no, especially to the pinot noir. However, the thing I crave most on birthdays and beyond is presence.

Go ahead. Roll your eyes. Give me another, “you’re so cheesy, Katie.” I can handle it. But in these mid to late thirties days, when professional, personal, and everything else under the sun zone collides while tending to tiny humans who demand and delight in every ounce of energy, there’s a real lack of presence.

It makes sense. We’re not as available as we used to be and our calendars and chaos look much different.  But I want coffee with a friend. I need adult conversation. I crave history and humility with family.

This birthday I made it clear that what I want is time with my beloved and the circle of people who enrich and enliven me. Here’s to the gift of presence. May we recognize it as a gift wrapped in love and delivered with purpose.

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Wander

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“A person does not grow from the ground like a vine or a tree, one is not part of a plot of land. Mankind has legs so it can wander.” ― Roman Payne, The Wanderess

I am a wanderer.

Too often we think of wandering solely in a physical capacity.

My mind goes a million places. My heart follows or ferociously finds a place to wander as well.

I have spent the past month wandering. I’ve let wild thoughts appear and multiply, delightful dreams dance throughout my imagination, and dangerous but determined emotional escapades unfold. Seriously, it’s so good to wander.

This adulthood thing can be serious. The world is for sure insane. So living and wandering in a world created by and through my heart is fun and encouraging. Every now and then, it’s good to escape.

But alas I’ve returned. So here’s to all of the things I found on the unpaved paths in my head and heart. And here’s to everything to come. Operation occupy the opportunity starts now.

Mom Fika: More “Mother’s Day”

danijela-froki-575670-unsplashI spent the day being showered with affection. From morning snuggles to handmade cards, it was simple and sweet. Highlights included a solo walk, which felt strange sans stroller, hot coffee, and an uninterrupted bath. It was the perfect combination of quiet indulgence and lovable noise. I am grateful.

I’m not sure people fully grasp the concept of fika. Furthermore, I’m convinced a lot of others don’t understand my passionate pursuit of it. I’m commonly asked, “what are you trying to do?” I could give you multiple versions or explanations, but only one truly matters, which is centered in connection. I believe that we become better people when we immerse ourselves in opportunities for engagement.

As a writer, I generate more ideas and invite inspiration into my life when I connect and conspire with others. As a mom, I unearth strength and cultivate confidence when I surround myself with positive and powerful women.  Fika is changing the way I live and it’s redefining how I work. It’s becoming something more than I anticipated and it’s exceeding the expectations of others.

I’m all in on the Mother’s Day celebrations.  Yesterday was a welcomed change where I surrendered and shared my joy in mommyhood with family. And while I loved everything about Mother’s Day, it got me thinking about what I need more of in my life. I need mom fika.

On Saturday, June 30th, from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. I’m hosting a mom fika at the Madison Community House. It’s a free event for mamas who are interested in getting out to talk to other mamas about anything and everything. We’re serving coffee and champagne, otherwise known as mom fuel, and giving ourselves permission to relax right in the middle of Saturday schedules.

The premise is simple: take a break with me. Let’s connect and cheers to mom life in a space filled with other beautiful, bold, busy, and brilliant mamas. Why? Because we shouldn’t allocate our celebrations of mommyhood to a sole Sunday in May. Let’s fika! If you plan to attend, please email fishingforfika@gmail.com so your coffee is hot and your champagne flute full.

Behind the Hair

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In case your new to the site, I’m in Buffalo, New York this week, which is my favorite city and where I was raised. I’m basking in the beauty of quality time with my parents and watching them become amused and exhausted by my two little ones. It’s a true gift to be home and I’m grateful for our time together.

In desperate need of hair care, I asked my mother if she’d watch my girls while I went for a cut and color. I’m loyal and don’t deviate from the caretakers and custodians in my life, which includes my hair stylists. The woman who cut and colored my hair today had me in her chair at the ripe age of four. After a quick embrace, she got to work on my hot mess of hair horror.

I’ve always the loved the salon setting. Maybe it stems from my fascination with Miss Truvy’s in Steel Magnolias. Or, it might be my penchant for observational gossip. Regardless, I like to sit and absorb the antics. But today my stylist wanted to talk. With a coffee in hand, I explained the concept of fika and we dove right in.

She mentioned her work in elder care. Specifically, she had a position where she ran a salon at an assisted living facility. This allowed older people to look their best and gather in a communal salon setting. She spoke about their stories. Essentially, people pour their hearts out in her chair. Their lives become an open book, which in turn becomes a sharing session for others as well.

We agreed that as people age their need to foster connection grows. For various reasons, people long to leave their legacy with someone. We discussed the joy we find through these connections and the opportunities and insight it provides us in our own lives.

As she snipped here and colored there, she spoke about her desire to gather and share the stories she’s heard behind the hair. It struck me that she’s heard several interesting things, which shaped her career and conscience. Like me, she wants to write and exchange.

In an age of chronic cell phone communication, for the most part, people still commit to conversation at the salon.

There are certain places and professions where fika happens more organically and freely. Today was a good reminder to be open and receptive to the unexpected. Because behind the hair, a story lurks waiting to be told.

A Sunday Special

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Sunday nights are special. It’s my “me” time and I’m grateful for it. In a house that’s rarely quiet, I celebrate stillness. The silence is brief as I’m met with a loudness from within. Words pour out of me. Voices awaken. There’s a story screaming to be written.

I have these incredible dreams of scripts. Titles dance in my head. I fantasize about drafting a modern love story that’s so cliche yet high in demand. But I tend to push these projects aside, not for lack of interest or passion, but because the loudest voices are the ones with real needs, presence, and purpose. I’m drawn to discovery. Where are the authentic and appealing characters?  In short, all around me.

I’m surrounded by rich history and quiet soldiers. People battle through obstacles, carve out peace, or challenge authority in every day encounters. Their lives, like our world, are ever-evolving. Their stories, while interesting and worthwhile, are often reserved for the intimate fikas within their lives. How do I get a seat at their table?

It’s this very question that drives my desire to foster fika. So as I sit hear at my table, dreaming of a seat at yours, think about what you’d want to say. What would you want me to write? If you’re interested, let’s connect.

Tonight I made a list of strangers or very far-removed people who I’m determined to fika with and write about. I’m truly “fishing for fika.” Cast your line with me. I’ll be here dreaming. I call it a Sunday special.