Remembering the Pause


Remembering The Pause


May 16, 2018


Lillian Walker


Hi All!

L & T checking in:


Things are seemingly quiet on the home front, but really they are just percolating below the surface.


If you have been following our indiegogo campaign, you know that last month we got together to submit a very exciting grant proposal, one that will award us a significant portion of our budget. It was incredible to see how much our ideas had developed in the months since we decided we wanted to seek out funding for this project, how they had matured into a concept that really felt ready.

Unfortunately, this means that we are waiting until sometime next month when then announce the grant recipients, as it will completely dictate what we do with our current funding. Or is it unfortunate?


As always life takes over. Spring is always such a busy time, and both of us have had to turn to other projects over the last few weeks. Especially Taylor, with her school responsibilities, conferences to travel for, and her twin brother's wedding in Indonesia. Oh, and moving to a new apartment. Dang, girl, you never stop.

Speaking of which, and because this is NOA and we are always speaking about inter-connectivity and learning to surrender just the right amount of control to whatever is out there, whether it be an intentional and intricate plan or total chaos, here are some words from Taylor about an experience she had on her way home:

 "I got really sick on my first flight home from Bali and have been in Jakarta recovering. Because I don't speak Bahasa and couldn't get a hold of anyone, I had to deeply trust the strangers caring for me. That trust was met by human angels. Folks on the plane gave me vomit bag after vomit bag, wet towels, mints, back rubs. The woman next to me accompanied me off the plane, got me in a wheelchair and to the medic. they put an IV w fluids in me. I had no idea what was happening but her eyes gave me ease. I was rendered unfit to fly by the medic who had equally angelic eyes. Eventually, I got a hold of my brother who, despite having been hit w the same food poisoning I had, took charge of translation and care. Another angel. my new sister in law's family got me into a car and eventually into a safe bed in a beautiful home. I've been in that bed for a few days recovering, being fed and cared for by new family that doesn't let language be a barrier to care taking. Today after hrs of crying about having to pay a gajillion dollars because is a scam, I was helped by an agent at KLM who got me a flight home at no charge. I've been messaging with family and friends throughout and am feeling the utmost abundant with support in the form of fellow humans. People are, generally, good. We are each other's angels. Here's me out of bed finally, listening to prayers from the Jakarta streets on the first day of Ramadan, journaling about my full heart. Headed home soon, more rejuvenated than ever, reminded as always that we are deeply dependent on each other. May we show up with full hearts on both sides of that dependence. I am very privileged that I am not hit in the face with such vulnerability to others more often, but experiences like these remind me of our deep interconnectedness, across borders and hearts. May we do our best to not take for granted this interdependence in our choices, words, politics, and actions. I love you guys."


She's actually still stuck in Jakarta. And that’s life!


And it got me thinking... About The Pause.


This is an idea that I first came across on my own travels while reading Alice Walker, "We Are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For". (Excellent read. Highly recommend.)


The Pause is that time that we often interpret as being stuck. After overcoming a challenge, and a big achievement, or a time of upheaval and change, there is inevitably a time of slowing down. It might look like food poisoning, a heavy heart, a loss of direction, broken cars and messed up finances. It stops us right in our tracks.


We modern humans are no good at accepting the ebbs and flows in life’s patterns. We don’t like being reminded that we are not in control. In the past when I’ve felt some kind of momentum or started to think I was really hitting my stride, often life intervenes. Maybe it just feels like that because I’m so internally resistant to any kind of rest, or maybe it's the universe’s way of creating balance in a world that doesn’t really have balance anymore.


The Pause is that moment that we get stuck in, and despite all our human frustrations, emerge from so much the better for, especially if we learn to surf these waves with an open heart to see what we might find. We are forced to reflect, to rest, to collect, and ultimately to learn. And to tend what we already have, which we must learn again and again is enough.


I think in this day and age, especially with the internet showing us everyone else’s achievements, it can be incredibly hard to allow for a slow and thoughtful artistic process. Mine is very slow and often unconscious, and very subject to the whims of my day to day schedule and responsibilities. Naturally. I’m certain this is the case for most of us.


Creativity, just like emotional processing, can’t really be put on a schedule.


So right now we’re stuck waiting to find out about this grant. And as per Alice Walker’s advice, I’m remembering that this is a Pause. The natural Yin to the Yang of fiercely productive work. I’m writing a lot, watching and reading a lot. I’m letting the connections slowly form and metabolize, and trying like hell to hold onto those connections for later. And I know that NOA will be so much the better for it.



BUT we did promise a video in June. And it just so happens we do have something that I think you’ll like. This was filmed in February shortly before the end of our campaign, with our very talented collaborator, Alana Parakh. Thanks, Alana!


Thanks Taylor.

Thanks Alice.

Thanks Pause.




Lots of love,




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