The Why of Glasses

The Why of Glasses I missed my glasses. Folly to mourn healing of the cranium, the return of equilibrium in the timing of an eye's focus, no more headaches.  No need. But I missed them over and over, magic blue glasses. Instant focus not of the eyes but of the mind. Perched on my head top announcing my greatest strength and weakness: you read too much. Sexy glasses for looking through and under and over. Sat-on, slept-in, dropped, re-bent, lost and found. Scholar's badge along with the inky fingers, thesis knee and the dent in the side of the first joint of the middle right finger. I wanted them back, silent messengers. They said,

Would you like to hear the eulogy at your own funeral?

"And you would be...?" Good morning, dearests. Would you like to hear the eulogy at your own funeral?  I think I just did.  I had a rare human experience.  Think back to attending the funeral of someone you loved and admired, and sitting there awash in pain and love and laughter as person after person stood up to share a story, express love, talk about how she or he helped them in ways large and small to grow and heal and build things and moments that felt important?  And at some point, do you remember a small hope that when it comes your time to die,

“You Can Do This Hard Thing”: The Odd Road to Tougher

A firefighter told me yesterday that when he started working with me on his resilience he was excited because he thought that he was going to come out of it tougher, stronger, better able to just push through the hard things. “And I was wrong about that,” he said.  “I’m softer now than I think I’ve been since I was a kid.  And I’m happier, and I do my job better, and I think I’ll be able to do it for longer.  But you didn’t make me tougher.”  Except that I did.  This is the paradox of resilience and vulnerability.  That from

How to Eat Love

Love is going out to kill a turkey in 20-degree weather so that your wife can tend other things.  And love is still liking the man who is grinning and handing you a large turkey to pluck in 20-degree weather, and it is the rueful smile in return.  Then it is catching each other's eyes over the table, biting into turkey but also into the body memory of cold fingers touching, the grin, the rueful smile, the puppies wrestling over feathers, the bucket steaming from the boiling water, blood in snow, the times a turkey attacked our daughter and another chased the

The Sermon of Lorca’s Animals

When I was asked to speak again this year for the St. Francis-inspired sermon of animals, my first thought was, “What if I said everything I had to say last year!”  Last year's sermon of animals was a flow coming from multiple places of animals in the life of family and field, forest and farm, and it was very broad spectrum — all the species, all the roles, all the interaction between creatures and family and land. But there is always more about animals.  So this year, it’s not the macro, but the micro — three short portraits.  I want to

Profanity for Children

I refrained from swearing near my young children, not precisely for their sakes, but as much in love for the cherished Lutheran couple next door who, already feeling sorrow for our unsavedness would be further dismayed to hear the Lord’s name taken in vain. Perhaps, too, it wasn’t really my genius, lacking early conviction. We sea kayakers were ever the less salty dogs. Later, I did offer the kids three-score Elizabethan epithets for the self-indulgent entertainment of hearing the snarls across the game board — “Gleekish wraith-borne ambsace!” “Beslubbering sheep-biting hedgepig!” World across, we each choose the obscenities that most shock our own inner alien — the sacred, the sexual, the emissions, the

A sample mini-adventure from a new collection on buoyancy? Here!

GAMES BEYOND ESCAPISM... This is from my upcoming podcasts of mini-adventures in human buoyancy.  Stay posted! Play. RADICAL COMPASSION TOOLS: field notebook and good pen, a timer, other humans, and a supple imagination TIME:  ten minutes DIFFICULTY:  RISK: low, but you will come back changed. ORIENTATION:  Compassion is often perceived as an experience, something that we feel or that can come upon us.  By the strategically resilient, it is to be treated more as a skill, a commitment, a practice, and a source of usable life energy.  This short adventure places it squarely in this second zone. Neurologically speaking, there are few practices we can engage in that so clearly demonstrate positive and

How we _really_ honor those we’ve lost

With our lives. Aimlessness and loss compound each other. Perhaps you're lying in bed at night worrying about tomorrow or next week, wishing you could sleep instead of worry. Or you wonder when you stopped loving exactly who you are - lit up by your dreams and desires for your life and the world - and you want to find YOU again (and you don't know how to get there from here.)   Or maybe there's a longing to be inspired in your career and you can't see what there is to be done.  Your life is feeling more bound by the impossible than the possible.  Your life isn't serving

Ignite Your Creativity

Teaching is about information and understanding. Coaching, however, is for intuition and implementation.  Here's a 2-minute video if you're all about firing up creativity and implementing what feeds your life! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsm1wZgDB40 How much creativity could your life stand? Ray Bradbury said, "I have never had a dry spell in my life, mainly because I feed myself well, to the point of bursting.  I wake early and hear my morning voices leaping around in my head like jumping beans.  I get out of bed to trap them before they escape." We have a tendency to see creativity as being in play for making art.  And it is.  But creative impulse that is stuffed

Luminations — Being flame…

luminations  noun, plural.  1. Gleams, glimmers, perspectives, clarity.  See also, dawn, morning, simplicity, resilience, work, love, home.  2.  A series of short videos by Lorca Smetana... Inspiration for when all the little things are weighing you down... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1YH7wSgzIu4 Don't leave your resilience growth to chance and luck.  Feed being the flame starting this new year by signing up now for one of our online classes to be the parent and health practitioner you want to be: Resilient Practitioners Amazing Parents - Amazing Kids