E Tū vigil day 73, rick day 14

Two weeks in to my hunger strike and I’m in a sort of flow.  Rhythms around waking,  drinking,  commuting,  engaging,  relaxing,  reflecting,  drinking,  sleeping,  going again.  I tire quickly but feeling strong,  and grateful to be in good heart.  In good humor. 

The variety of interactions during each day is broad.  I’ve had many folk I work with come to see me and I’ve loved it.   There’s more reciprocity than there is typically in the therapy setting i think.   Perhaps i have more vulnerability since I’m somewhat starved!?  Today a number of hilarious and also touching moments.   Yesterday too.  Authentic human encounter which can be very nourishing.   I finished my day with an engagement with a beautiful 80 year old who was so open with me, and sincerely spoke of how she would like to do more to help with the climate problem beyond her vegetarian diet and low- fly policy.

“How can I contribute meaningfully?” I find it a very fine question, and one I like to ask myself over and over.

One thing that’s clear to me is that the whole unavoidable presence of unfolding climate alarm globally is being ‘dealt’ with; whether with a dissociative denial, or hopelessness, or through blame and hostility, or through so- called ‘hopium’. Who can bear the grief??? And how do we in activist circles remain connected to ourselves emotionally and not get fixated on perpetrators of climate injustice?? Can we untangle our own trauma enough so that we can keep in touch with all the sides of the thing emotionally?? Our self care included?

I find it works to engage with the public quite gently. If there’s a rigid or dismissive stance, it seems better to approach respectfully rather than try to educate or change people. It’s so fascinating too to reach people where they are. What are their thoughts and beliefs? What do they hope for? What is meaningful to them?? And these exchanges can become quite personal, even intimate, as with the lovely 80 year old today.

Starting out on the strike I imagined it would be an intense inner journey, akin to a meditation retreat. I’m surprised. I am being showered with gifts.

Six days ahead.

I’m aware that some of my writing may be straying from the kaupapa. I can easily imagine that there’s an expectation or hope that I should be more focused, a little more persuasive. But then I think, a hunger strike speaks for itself. Let’s create the space to connect with each other.

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