being excellent to each other

When I can’t quite build a thought out into something solid enough for this blog, I will often post it to Instagram with the tag #LilliputianLog.

The last weeks have seen a few of those posts so I thought I’d share two here for those who aren’t on the other platform.

[For those who are on Instagram, and follow me at @rawra.avis : I now have an account for @Rarasaur, too, where I post readings of the blog posts and other such things. Would love to see you there.]



Today I left the apartment for a mini very-distanced adventure with people I love. Blowing kisses through a mask feels so reminiscent of pressing palms together through plexiglass. I remember how much that squeezed my heart before I learned to believe that my love could navigate anything. I’m sending strength to everyone who is doing something like this for the first time.

We keep saying this has been going on for six months, but if we’re being honest, every month has been different, yes? We’ve been kept on our toes and I don’t know about you, but I’m hardly a ballerina.

My toes are tired. My heart is, too.

Love is a muscle. The first few times it has to barrel past an N95 mask, tuck itself into a letter, slip through plexiglass, swim across an ocean, etc— it gets tired, sure, but stronger.

Take your naps. Trust your love to reach your loves.

Wear your mask.

I’m often overwhelmed by how much love we show by that simple action.

In jail, the girls used to set food we hadn’t eaten by the trashcan. It had to look like it went in, but we shuffled it so someone still hungry could pocket a piece of bread or a cookie. When my bunkie was pregnant, I always had someone’s leftovers up my sleeve for her, and my heart bulked up to a size that could not be beaten down.

People looking out for each other is rarely glamorous, but it strengthens our softness.

And I know it isn’t the most obvious choice to see a good piece of bread, wrapped in toilet paper, on top of a trash can and think: this is love. But it is.

It is as much as the masks are.

And learning how to receive love when it isn’t conventionally-shaped is just as important as learning how to send love out into the world when it can’t be wrapped into a hug.

I’m learning how to see love in rest, too. Self-love. Community-love.

That’s where we’ll dream up a better world, right?



My late husband has been on my mind a lot more than normal lately. I don’t know if it’s because this whole year sounds like something he’d have written in one of his horrors, or if it’s just because this year has tarred me, and my grief falls from the sky like feathers, and it’s harder than normal to shake it off.

I filled out a form last week and realized I have finally stopped forgetting that I’m no longer married, and that was harder somehow than even the painful re-remembering that used to follow the forgetting. I celebrated my 36th, even though I never got to celebrate his.

Sometimes it feels like everyone on this planet has a mouth full of feathers right now, and I wish it felt like company instead of even more tar. I wish maybe we were softer for all the sky falling, all the world molting, all the hurt. But I think I saw a man spit a feather into someone’s heart the other day on the news, and it turns out we can even weaponize this.

Dave, of course, would not have been surprised because he was half as naive, and twice as wary. I’m not sure how to measure our hopes. Mine are more stubborn, but his were bigger. I lost the height to my hope when he died— the ability to stick my head through the cracks in the sky— and it turned out he had been carrying me the whole time. Now I’m back to being a stubborn ground-walking goblin and it’s harder to know where to start rebuilding when you just can’t get that perspective.

It’s funny how people act like you just lost a person, when really you can lose a whole landscape, a whole collection of ideas that you can’t reach without a boost.

But time keeps trucking unless you have a time machine which reminds me that the new Bill & Ted finally released. I’m sorry he missed it. I found this doodle in one of his old blog posts, and thought about how different things would be if. If. I f …


Grief is something I’ll never be able to explain just right, and my sense of hope is destined to be more determined than sensible or sized, but I am always, always wishing us peace.

May we learn to be excellent to each other.

33 thoughts on “being excellent to each other

  1. “my grief falls from the sky like feathers”… such a visceral image! And yes, grief is like that… a lovely post about love in all its forms… thank you. And thank you for wearing your mask- here in Australia we have very different restrictions in different areas, but yes: masks people! G 🙂

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  2. Dave ❤

    I think right now, the gossamer between heaven and earth is a bit thinner because the Creator knows we need watching. Christopher has been in many of my dreams and it's weird as I sleep next to my (now) beloved, in the same house, the same room, that Christopher and I once shared. One of his framed pieces is above the bed; it's of a crossroads and was an instant favorite when he first drew it. He framed it and put it there, where it was forgotten for a long time. And then he wasn't here anymore and every so often, I'd notice that picture with a silent 'oh!', like it was new and hadn't been there when I looked at the wall the last time. I close my eyes and see it, wondering if he's sitting in the building he drew at the crossroads, watching us sleep, happy that the world has moved on fairly well for me which was one of his wishes. There is a comfort, knowing that he is smiling. I pray that Dave is, too.

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  3. Ah, what a lovely post. Grief comes in so many different shapes and sizes. I am just now, these past three years, learning to be in touch with my grief. Holding it for over 40 years, not a good idea. I’ve realized that being with my grief, really with it, letting it invade all of my senses, and then letting it out, and letting it go, is such a therapeutic process. It makes me wonder about all the years I held it in. Phew. Anyway, I love the blog, thank you for writing and sharing yourself. Be well, and be at peace.

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  4. What a depth-full insight! Loving each and every expression that has flowed through consistently here. It is from the sub-conscious and deep down from within. Grief is a subject that I haven’t tried my hands at, not because I haven’t been able to swing along with its emotions, neither that it has made me stronger. Just that it puts me (and now I realize) and everyone else into a world that’s very far away. Just so in my thoughts, I believe now. I have lost a very close friend of mine last year. Have not come out of it still, neither do I want to! Now that I re-read your post for the third time (no jokes!) it certainly feels feathers (sometimes even as ashes, that weigh as heavy as a lightning) that’s just zooming in at us. Though rationally every soul that takes shape has to fade away one day, it’s the subtle emotions that strengthens the bond – even invisibly! Lots of love, strength and virtual hugs that I extend! Thanks for sharing your “mind” and “soul”! 💐

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