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Sonoma Valley Fire Diaries: 10/18/17 (Home)

It's important that we share our experiences with other people. Your story will heal you and your story will heal somebody else. When you tell your story, you free yourself and give other people permission to acknowledge their own story.

- Iyanla Vanzant (motivational speaker)

This is the final post for the Sonoma Valley Fire Diaries. I'm so grateful to those of you who read, shared and supported these posts!

I truly believe it is important to heal with others during tragic events and I hope my stories will inspire others to share their own. I decided to write the Sonoma Valley Fire Diaries after a friend said she would have liked to have seen my daily posts and realizing I was dealing with "writer's block." I couldn't seem to move past the hurt of my neighborhood. I knew I had to share what I went through and share what I could of what other's experienced in order to heal. I also decided to slowly roll out the Diaries in my own effort to show how healing takes time: it can't be rushed (although my ego still says it can!) and the hurt is never forgotten. In this American society, we seem to see yoga as only a modality for decreasing stress and increasing flexibility and strength, but it is much more than that: it encompasses community and healing.

Now that I've completed the Diaries, I'll be introducing an annual theme inspired by one of my dear teachers, Stacey Rosenberg. Stay tuned for the roll out next week!

The process of self-healing is the privilege of every being. Self-healing is not a miracle, nor is self-healing a dramatization of the personality as though you could do something superior. Self-healing is a genuine process of the relationship between the physical and the infinite power of the soul. -Yogi Bhajan, 10/7/94


Wednesday, October 18, 2017


I'm home! Well, one of my homes. I've realized even more so during this week (Mon, 10/9 - Tues, 10/18) that I have MANY homes. My home is small and has just enough room for my belongings, my home is where I lay my head safely such as in a hotel, my home is where I know my dog Nilla is taken care of, my home is when a good friend opens their door to me, and my home is still in Texas with my dear friends and family there.

During the fires, I've since seen a friend lose her home of 30+ years and belongings yet stay positive during her healing. During that time she found safety in a hotel and all she could need through the giving of her community. She's since purchased a new home and is having a great time (albeit she confessed TOO good of a time) shopping to replenish her home! I admire her strength and resiliency. She is just one of the many stories of people recovering and rebuilding what they've known as "home".

Home means having a place to feel safe, to heal and to rest, and in this case, home is really where we CHOOSE to make it. Nature has a way of deciding its course and so we have to change our own course to learn and sometimes deal with loss. By healing with our friends and community, we can begin to find moments of security and solace and deepen the connection with the home in our own heart.

I'm grateful for my HOME.



DAY 10

Sonoma Fire Updates: Hi Everyone! This past week for me and Nilla was a whirlwind. I spent 2 days in Petaluma (thank you Jes Williams-Resneck!), came to Sonoma to collect more clothing on Wednesday, spent 2 days in Santa Cruz with Abbie Coe, 2 days in Burlingame (many hotels were booked), and then 1 final night in Santa Rosa (thank you Sabin Cloud MacPhee & Danielle Estrada DeMone!) to wait for Sonoma’s all-clear. I have to admit that after 1 week of living fearfully that it was scary to come back. The BBQ smell seeps in at night and creates a bit of PTSD. Now that it’s Wednesday I’m feeling a bit more settled and figured out where the leaks are and know now that an air purifier does wonders! I’ll be able to start work on Monday and am thankful my workplace wasn’t impacted by the fire except for loss of power and smoke infiltration. I’ve discovered this new work family is incredibly supportive and I’m looking forward to meeting them. In Sonoma, the smoke seems to clear in the evening and it’s rather hopeful for some normalcy to return although we are all scarred in some way. Many folks are still trying to put the pieces back together and my heart goes out to them. The fires are still going yet containment is on the rise. Sonoma as a town is grateful for all those firefighters, first responders, etc. that came to our rescue as well to our neighbors for constantly sharing information: I’m really grateful and amazed. Real heroes are among us, or, as I like to call them, Earth Angels. 🙏🏼

Love this picture: