ASK THE UTTER #3

without the typos

Welcome to this edition of ASK THE UTTER!!! 

in which I answer a few of your questions. If you have questions for me, this is where you ask them.

*NOTE. I’m not licensed; these answers are born of humble opinion and a little experience.

Happy Friday, beloveds. I’m grateful for you!


How to heal from being hurt by a close friend? Oftentimes when I read advice about this, it follows the lines of learning about realizing the ways in which your friend wasn't a good friend throughout your friendship. For my situation, that is just not the case. She was a stellar friend basically the whole friendship. She supported, provided space, was so selfless, so vulnerable, and loved so hard. The kind of friend you constantly grow with. The kind of friend who I genuinely believed wouldn’t hurt anyone. Until she hurt me. How do you heal from that? How do I turn something like this, something so unexpected and so uncharacteristic of a person, into something beautiful?

When it comes to our expectations of other people, those closest to us, those whom we have trusted with our hearts, I have found this to be true;

we cannot expect anyone on this planet to put us first in all they do. People will surprise us with their actions, sometimes in upsetting, unexpected ways. We will surprise our loved ones too, and we will injure them by not putting them first in all of our affairs, but it is impossible? All of us are growing and changing, reacting, hiding, acting out, learning. We all have all hurt people. It does not mean that the hurt is acceptable or even that you can come back from it. Of course, I do not know the specifics, but this is what I do know. I have been wrong; I have been so wrong. You have been wrong. We have been wrong, and we have hurt people. Between us, we have hurt the entire world. As much as we have been harmed, we have harmed others. As much as we have been forgotten, we have forgotten other people. The aim is not perfection but intentionality and accountability. You listed a few reasons why the friendship (and friend) were invaluable; indeed, your connection sounds/sounded solid. And then the thing happened, and you were thrown off course. All you have to do is this; be a friend to yourself, the best friend, and support yourself with the things you need to truly heal from this. You do not need to have an answer now. When you have taken time and space, supported yourself with loving action, you will know what to do. More will be revealed, and you will understand even more. Maybe what you feel will change. Perhaps it will start a conversation with the two of you. Perhaps there is no more conversation to be had. Maybe it is done, maybe not. Time will serve you, it will let you know.

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How do you let love go without secretly hoping it comes back?

Do not try to manage your hopes too much at this point. If hope is the better feeling thought, allow it to have its day. Free yourself, and be honest about your grief. Feel it. It will come and it will go.

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Hi! Any tips for writing when some "thing" is holding you back? Is it really just discipline and building the habit of it, setting a goal and sticking to it?

Honestly, I have struggled with this in the past. There was no routine built into my schedule, and that was holding me back. Oh, I could write a book on the reasons, but that is not the point. Even for someone as unstructured and easily bored as me, an element of routine works. I need something to answer to. When I think about the times in my life that I was most unfocused, they correlate with times when I was not making the time to do things that I really enjoy. I try not to treat my writing like a job, but it is a thing I try to show up for daily, even when I’m not feeling it. A good example is this newsletter. Before deciding to jump in, I pondered on it for a few weeks. I have never done anything like this before. Twice a week, unedited, free-flowing words? To an audience? Without the editing process, the time to polish anything? It was scary. But now it has become something I show up for, because I care deeply about my readers and this newsletter. It doesn't need to be perfect. In just a few months it has become so important to me. You are so important to me. I wonder sometimes if I had decided against it, where would the words have gone? What happens to the work we do not make?

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what is your favourite Fall ritual or favourite Fall activity? How do you mark or celebrate the season?

Walking, walking…always walking. Watching everything get golden. I probably walk twice as much in Fall then any other season.

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what is the hardest thing you’ve ever written? why did you write it? how did you feel afterwards?

THE TERRIBLE was not hard to write, but it may be the most bare that I have ever laid myself. It is about my early life and everything that has happened, a colourful life that I am thankful for, but was also difficult. There was a lot attatched to the book, press etc, that made releasing this book complicated and some of the press and the way my work was framed (especially by certain journalists) etc was unpleasant, but I kind of took it on the chin and kept going. It doesnt matter in the end. My service to the story and my truth was the only thing that mattered.

THE HOW was the hardest thing to write. I was my own worst critic.

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How do I tell someone that they light up my heart like no one ever has, that they make my mind explode with passion, caring and adoration, without it sounding too intense?

Oh, just like that. What’s wrong with intensity? (I am biased, of course, because I am a sucker for intensity.) Remember, the person for you will not be scared away by your honesty.

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Where do you go when you have no sense of direction in life?

I go inside, often by going outside. Noticing nature. Letting it be my friend. Allowing my thoughts to clear. I do this every day until I notice

what I love,

what I can’t stop thinking about,

what I care about,

what brings me joy.

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the lake is calling; why can't I be there today?

Bring it to you; it exists in you, you’re more powerful than you understand.

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How do you deal with anxiety and loneliness?

Me personally? Probably as well as anyone else, probably as poorly as anyone else. By understanding that anxiety and loneliness are impermanent. although they feel stationary, all-consuming, final. Also by understanding that even when there seems to be no one around who can understand or support me, this too is a distortion. There is help everywhere, sometimes from people, we do not know. There are resources available. Yes, the answers are inside us, but often we need help locating them. We do not have to deal with everything alone.

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How do I stay present and enjoy life now when so many things I desire aren’t here yet?

I understand this conundrum in more ways than I can tell you. Here is the thing, you must create conditions whereby the things that you desire will find you. Try not to focus on the lack of these things, though it is trickier than it sounds. There are hacks to this magnetic exercise; fill your life with as many fun things as possible, and continue to have new, interesting experiences. You want to believe deeply in the things you desire. You want to believe in yourself. If there are reminders of the things that you want, and if these reminders get you excited, surround yourself with these markers. To anyone else they may seem ridiculous; ignore that. It is a vibrational trick; become the kind of person who has the things you want, in big and small ways. You will start to attract more and more because they will know what to attach themselves to. Like attracts like. Get ready. xxx

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I love you all xxx