WORDS: KATE WEINER
IMAGE: KAILEA FREDERICK
Inspired by Loam Artist-in-Residence Kailea Frederick's project, Pause Within the Chaos, I've been planting prayers every day to keep me grounded when my eco-anxiety runs wild. It's such a simple practice but it helps me see beauty in my now. I love making my mandala from found materials—seashells I scavenged on the shores of Lopez Island, dandelion greens foraged from my neighborhood, dried flowers leftover from a bouquet—and sitting with this work of living art. And when I'm done, it's liberating to let it go. It's a reminder–shoutout to Pema Chödrön—that things fall apart only to come together. Again and again and again.
As Kailea writes of her project: "How can we begin to become even more creative when thinking about ways to bridge our personal lives and the work of our lives?" How can we create daily rituals that not only enrich our present but also sustain the hard work of activism? I've found, in choosing to create moments where I can sit with my pain and explore the possibility of peace, the seeds for regenerating my relationship to activism. I've been vacillating between burnout and restlessness, between raw passion and deep sadness these last few months and so it's been especially healing to give over a few minutes every morning to disciplined creation.
As we wade into the murky, muggy days of summer, I hope you'll explore planting a prayer of your own. Daily rituals for reconnection truly can restore the soul.