Posted on

Greetings from the Shamsiverse, September 15, 2017

I had to do something in order to make sure the tomato plants wouldn’t fall over. I caged as many as I could with the cages I found, but in doing so, I felt as though I was trapping them – containing their wildness. Silly, but there you have it.


Last night, in a total “wait, what just happened?” moment, a friend texted Shelly to ask if we’d like to go to the U2 concert at the Super Dome. Someone had given  him comp tickets, and all we had to do was show up.

There was a bit of hemming and hawing, only because we’d just received news about a friend of Shelly’s having crossed over a couple of days before. Ultimately, we chose to go to the concert.

The band opened with “Sunday Bloody Sunday”, and immediately following that, Bono began to chat up the audience …but it wasn’t the normal chatter. He raised his hands, and asked everyone to raise their hands, asking “Will you support us tonight?” and then, “Will you support each other tonight?” ….and by support, he meant, “Will you lift us up? Will you lift each other up?” …the band created and held space for thousands of people in that venue. The feeling of it was empowering, and huge.


One of our neighbors chipped the end of her radial bone near her wrist last week. She lives alone, with no family in the area. She’s hardheaded (like most of the women I know) and insisted she was “okay” to be driving herself around to doctor’s appointments and such for the last week.

…until Wednesday when she was scheduled for surgery and would have to be under an anesthetic, though she still drove herself there, even after I agreed to pick her up, and told her I was free to drop her off as well.

We’ve spoken in the past about how difficult it is for either of us to ask for help – “we just don’t want to put anyone out.”

Ever hear anyone say that? Yeah. Me too.


On the way home from the surgery, we discussed again the discomfort in asking for help. I wondered – again, as I have so many times  – if it’s because we work so hard for autonomy, or if we, as ‘Southern Women’ don’t want to be seen as weak, in need of help.


About ten or eleven years ago, I read the book “The Art of Extreme Self Care” by Cheryl Richardson – it changed my life.

I come from one of those families where when the women are asked “Oh, Can I help you with that?!”

Because someone is carrying something heavy, or performing a manual labor task, and all we can reply with is, “No, Thank you. I’ve got it.”

This is like some weird mantra we absorb …”No, Thank you. I’ve got it.”

In the book, Cheryl Richardson talks about this. She talks about how it is also a gift – when someone offers their assistance. And when we refuse, we’re not being strong, we’re not being independent, we’re actually refusing a gift someone is offering.

Boy howdy does that speak to all of the manners my Grandmothers taught me.

So, I learned to say, “Yes, thank you. That would be wonderful.” Whether I ‘had it’ or not.

Because this is how we support one another. …in my opinion.

Being supported doesn’t just mean being held up by someone – it means  allowing others to help us when they offer, when they are able. Being supported means allowing ourselves to be part of a community of Humanity wherein we all support one another; whether that’s through prayer, thought, word, deed – whether we’re giving or receiving. Because doesn’t it feel good to be of assistance?

Yeah. Totally.

So why not also allow someone else to feel that goodness?


I’ve been a bit of a mess this last year without the structure of an 8 – 5 job. I still haven’t ‘figured it all out.’ But something that’s been slowly dawning on me …you know – over the last nine months 😉 is that without the support of a structure, I don’t use my full potential. I knew this of course. But I’ve been balking.

Why? Because like my tomato plants, I’ve been growing wild and strong – leaves, stalks, and stems growing every-which-away …beautiful, and strong, but not as powerful as we could be.

And so I agreed with my deep-inner-knowing this morning, as I was ‘caging’ my tomato plants, that we really do need more structure – because within that we can be supported in truly growing into our fullest potentials.

…you know – me and the tomatoes.

It’s also a message that’s been coming up more and more in my weekly readings. ‘Harnessing the Power’

I used to be such a structured person that I forgot to have fun.

That’s kind of why I’ve gone all willy-nilly.

A pendulum, in full swing.

So I’m going back to regular practices. I’m going back to routine. I’m going back to all of the things that have gotten me the furthest in the past.

But this time, I’m going to learn to balance it with fun.

Also, I’m learning to work with others more.  Allow myself to be supported, and support in return.

I won’t stop being Wild and Free, but maybe build a metaphorical waterwheel to help harness some of that wild and free into being productive as well. …the idea of cages still freaks me out (I kind of want to go liberate the tomato plants.)

In any event, I’ll keep y’all posted.

Supported. It’s not an easy dance, but I’m learning.


The Happy Freyja’sDay Dance video from this morning is below, & as always, I hope you dance along.

Until next time, I hope you get to spend time with people you love doing stuff that fills you up and brings you joy!

~Shamsi, Charlie, Me

Happy Freyja’sDay World!

Happy FreyjasDay World! Are You Ready to Dance?! from Shamsi Charlie Pettus on Vimeo.


For the foreseeable future, my Shamsi-schedule over at Crescent Lotus is:

Sat – PoundFitness® 9AM
Tue – PoundFitness® 6PM followed by Anatomy of Bellydance (A.o.B.) @ 7:15PM
Wed – PoundFitness® 6PM <—-NEW DAY & TIME!!!!
Thu – PoundFitness® 5:30PM
Fri – PoundFitness® 9:30AM <—NEW TIME!!! We’re now an hour later on Friday Mornings!


This week in pictures.