© Melinda Coppola | All rights reserved
If I’m parsing out pieces of myself and affixing labels to those pieces, ( and don’t we do this?) then this is the biggest piece of who I am. But piece doesn’t feel quite right, because my mother self lives in all of me; body, mind, heart, and soul. I mother a complicated, beautiful daughter who has rocked my world since she made her debut some thirty ago. Her blog name is Bink. Click here to read more about that. The labels that have been associated with her include Autism Spectrum Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Bink is not exactly disordered, though. I can say this with certainty after studying her in rapt detail for, well, thirty years. She is as Spirit made her, ordered intricately and very differently than many, and she does a damn good job of adapting to a world that is not particularly welcoming to her and others like her. She continues to delight and amaze me, and also to challenge me, every day and many nights!
I am also mom to four wonderful felines who bring much joy and laughter to my home, which I co-manage with my husband, Super Guy.
I started writing poetry when I was about eight, and somewhere in a box, I have twenty-nine or so notebooks to prove it. My Muse and I have not always been on intimate or even copacetic terms, but we’re getting along much better these days, and dozens of my word weavings have found homes in magazines, books and literary journals. You can view a partial list here. I am at work on my first full length book of poetry.
I am allowing myself to claim this label now. I used to avoid it because I thought I wasn’t “good” enough. I know better now, having learned that we are all artists in some way and we are all good enough. I make art with paint and colored pencils. I have a strong connection to beach stones and I make art with them as well. I also enjoy cooking creatively using color and texture and spice. I love to sing and I participate in a Spiritsong Circle which is an art that thoroughly nourishes my soul. I also get much pleasure from creating and recreating my home environment.
I’m a Yoga teacher. I founded a studio which I ran for some years. When I closed that I was happy to teach in other people’s spaces. My intent has been to Yoga accessible to many and to help people understand that the physical piece of Yoga asana ( posture) is but one aspect of the whole.
My exposure to a variety of kids and adults with disabilities led me to create Yogabilities ™, my adapted group and private classes for kids and adults with a variety of developmental differences. I am blessed and humbled to be able to offer special populations some Yogic techniques of self-awareness, stress reduction, and increased strength and flexibility.
Post pandemic I am limiting my offerings to sporadic group Zoom classes, private Zoom classes, and select in-person group Yogabilities™ classes for educational institutions.
I’ve had a lifelong love of space and silence, and this seems to be deepening as I get older. I am drawn to the idea of simplifying and de-cluttering in every aspect of my life despite the fact that it’s a national fad. Favorite TV shows right now: You Live in What?, Restored, and Make Yourself at Home. I enjoy greeting the day early, usually while drinking a cup of hot cinnamon tea. I’ve been exploring icy cold finishes (30 seconds or so) to my morning showers. I don’t love doing that, but I do enjoy having done it. Provides a great boost of energy, may be anti-inflammatory, and the air feels delightfully warm afterwards.
The books I am carrying will come to term and I will birth them, naturally and in their own time. My very special daughter will be living in a supportive and peaceful environment near me but apart from me. I’ll find peace and sanctuary in my home by the water. The regrets I have, though they are few…may they continue to evolve into gratitude and self-compassion. Oh, and may we all grow to recognize that we are far more alike than we are different. May we encourage and support each other, may we share our gifts widely and without fear. May we seek the best in each other. Amen.