34 Comments
Jul 27, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

You probably didn’t mean to write this as a tribute to Sinead, but it is, indeed, my favorite of all the ones I’ve read today; all the ones I’ve read today, while avoiding my own silence. Thanks for the nudge.

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Jul 27, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

No one writes like you...you always leave me in tears.

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About the toxin, all I can say is when you succeed to stop you will feel like you are living in the space between. It's one of the best places I have been. But you are right: getting there is shit. Thank you sharing this piece. I am privileged to read it.

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This hit. The only moment of quiet I have in my day is holding my baby as he falls asleep. I used to watch his mouth and listen for the change in his exhales to know when he was truly asleep. Now I close my eyes and feel for the change in his body -- the way his head tilts back slightly in the crook of my elbow and his shoulder rolls down -- to know he's asleep. That's the other thing that's scary about silence: we are invited to feel what's going on in our bodies.

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Jul 28, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

I love this so much! We are all bombarded by noise and as we age we realize how little of it matters. Finding the bits that actually do, and attending to them, is the challenge of aging well. Thanks for this, Elissa😊

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"This is the ineffable,the mundane, the wondrous."

When life seems (is) hellish it is those little elapses of 'normal' time where you feel yourself unexpectedly transported to a tiny, beautiful elsewhere that doesn't care about your problems yet seems to absolve them all, just for that minute, sublime moment. You capture that so succinctly here.

Your post was wonderfully written and as others have suggested, relatable. But the concluding note was transformational. As life in late middle-age offers ever-greater challenge to the sense of ease and joy I once took for granted, I find myself making a practice of actively seeking out such moments as you describe. It works,mostly. I guess it's subjective, but I still find myself regularly blown away by what magic I can find, in the everyday and seemingly prosaic.

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Jul 28, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

I was thinking about this for a while today.

When I was growing up and even now as a senior I find I need time to process. Young people now have almost no real down time to simply contemplate and assimilate new information. The input is constant. Not just sound but the nonstop visual input is like overstimulation.

Great read. Thank you.

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Jul 27, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

Such a good - and timely - reminder. Take good care, may your load lighten soon

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This is so beautiful. I love the idea of wonder curing anxiety or other things. It reminds me of Laura Dern in Enlightened when she sees a sea turtle in the ocean at her retreat after her complete nervous breakdown at work haha.

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The truth is a thing of brutal beauty. You speak it well.

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how perfectly put.. so true.. I am naturally a listener rather than a talker and struggle immensely with deluges of information.. I read your post and wanted to respond and nearly didn `t because of the overwhelm I feel of constant information and the need to respond to that information . We should content ourselves with less, and learn to breathe and be still in silence.. thankyou..

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Jul 28, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

I find the 5 finger breathing exercise miraculously helpful. You probably already know of it but just in case:

https://youtu.be/5QVqMaWrP-s

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Jul 28, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

Beautifully written, as always. It helps to save me.

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Jul 27, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

Wow. Your writing is sublime. Truly a wonder, and a remedy for my anxiety.

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Jul 27, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

An absolutely beautiful piece I relate to on so very many levels, Elissa, and I haven't even watched the video yet. Bravo! JB

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Jul 27, 2023Liked by Elissa Altman

Thanks for that video. It's 105 in Austin, Texas and I'm a polar bear at heart. As I settled into the video my wife announced there is a dead squirrel in the yard and I need to deal with it. It's going to have to wait a few minutes:)

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