a boy and his boat - new pod on life, death, craft, and the power of story

Dear ones -

I hope you had a beautiful Beltane (for those in the Northern Hemisphere - Samhain for those in the Southern) - a time when the veil is thin between this world and the other and life is either at the height of bursting forth or at the beginning of its deepest diminishment.

There are times when it feels so grounding to tune into the cycles of the year - nature’s rhythms. And times when the beauty of the continual flow of life feels so dissonant with the happenings of our human created world that I feel almost torn in two. Stretched in my capacity to hold paradox and seeming opposites. Challenged in my ability to love us as a species. Totally unsure how to respond when someone asks how I am because “well” and “not at all OK” are both deeply, deeply true.

And this feels as good a time as any to bring you a podcast conversation which holds the questions:

How do we say ‘yes’ to life, without saying ‘no’ to death?

How do we “rise to the occasion” and “wrestle something good” from the heartbreak of a terminal diagnosis?

What does it look like to “become familiar with grief and uncertainty in intimate ways”?

Today’s virtual fire-side conversation about being human and being alive is with Duncan Passmore - husband, father, writer, and woodworker of 20 years - as he shares his story and the story of his son, Torin, diagnosed at a young age with Pearson syndrome, a rare and incurable mitochondrial disorder.

It’s a story of life and death, grief and beauty; punctuated with the power of story, the mystery of ceremony, the practice of craft and community… and the building of boats.

It’s also a way of inviting you, if you feel able and called to, to weave into the community Torin has inspired and contribute to Duncan’s family’s GoFundMe; raising the funds to support them spending six months with Torin’s presence and his memory as they build a boat and sail it on Lake Windermere - a request of Torin’s he didn’t live to see fulfilled.

As someone grappling in my own ways (as most of us are) with fears, griefs, and the way life laughs at plans; as someone who believes in the power of community, of cultures devoted to full-spectrum aliveness, mystery, story, and ceremony; this feels like a deeply worthy story to share and a deeply worthy endeavor to support.

Join us around the virtual fire? You’re most welcome here.

May we shed the armor which keeps us trying to hold off what is. May we become vulnerable enough and brave enough to share our stories so community might find us and, when the time comes, hold us. May we use our hands and heart to craft beauty from grief so we might fully embody at least some small part of what it seems to mean to be human and to be alive. May Torin’s presence and memory live on through the ripples of his story and the way it disarms us and invites us to rise to the occasion of our own lives.

You can find out more about the project and become a part of the prayerful building of the boat through Duncan’s GoFundMe: https://gofund.me/9983ec87

(Please also consider sharing the GoFundMe so we can continue casting the net wider and weaving more people into this story. They’re at 50% as of the recording/ publishing of this episode and have until June 9th to make it the rest of the way.)

with Love,


P.S. My Zoom seems to have finally caught up to the version with the floating reaction videos - so, if you're watching the episode, please excuse the random thumbs up and balloons which seem to pop up at strange and slightly inappropriate times.

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Hi! I'm Kate - an intuitive, medicine woman, and guide for embodied Presence

I care with every fiber of my being that you, a creature of soul and soil, are trying to thrive in systems not designed for you. Where ancient wounds of disconnect, inherited traumas, and misalignments with our over-culture leave you feeling out of place, too much, or like a canary in the mine, I see invitations back deeper into your own aliveness; vital next steps to a wiser, more relational future. Let’s navigate your big questions and transitions together. I’ll support you living meaningfully in this world even though you may feel like you were designed for a different one. I’ll keep you orienting to the truth, heart, and essential wholeness of who you are at the edge of great joy and when you need your feet held to the fire of your own journey. You can see what I offer: www.wildsacredjourney.com and sign up to get a little bit of me, direct to your inbox!

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