Jul 1, 2024
from the editor

from the editor

Just as summer is heating up, I am planning to chill out — way out. How about you?

I have a few favorite things to do when I need to disconnect, wind down or de-stress. One is to sit outside on my shady porch swing and practice mindfulness. Listen to the birds. Feel the breeze (please, please let there be a breeze). Focus on my breath.

I think the calm I get from this comes from my childhood, where I could often be found dangling and swaying on a swing. I was quite an imaginative, creative child, and many of my greatest ideas came as I was gently swinging back and forth on a homemade tree swing in my Tennessee backyard. Fast forward to today, and my swing is the place I unplug.

Another favorite thing is to immerse myself in water somewhere. Pool, beach or sound — it doesn’t really matter where. The water is not only a sweet relief from our summer heat, but it’s also a relief from other burdens we carry every day, like gravity.

This is a childhood connection, too. I remember holding my breath and trying to sink to the bottom of a pool, floating in complete disconnected drift. Lighter than on land, and more graceful somehow too, I was a mermaid or an octopus, still and quiet, hair eerily curling all around my face, listening to the mysterious underwater sounds my ears could not interpret. Then my brother would come crashing into my reverie with the best-aimed cannonball he could muster, and that would be the end of that.

Here’s hoping your July breezes are cool and calm, your quiet moments are plenty and your interrupting cannonballs are few. When you find that perfect place and time, sit back, ignore the July heat and enjoy The Big Chill.

— Lisa Player