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The Space Between Uncertainty and Joy


I‘ve officially been an Oakland resident for 11 days and am slowly settling into life up here. My daily writing practice has fallen off a bit on the journal and I am here, recommitting to getting back into the swing of things. I forgot how much energy it takes to move to a new city and truth be told I was pretty exhausted my last couple of weeks in LA.

It has been such good practice for me to stay gentle with myself during this major transition of moving my life up north and in with Nic. I know deep down this was the right choice for me, it’s just taking a while to really sink into life up here. I also know from all of the moving I have done in the past it will be another month or two before I am fully integrated. Being comfortable in the middle of the settling is something that I am really showing up for. Despite the fact that Nic and I started a cleanse 2 days ago, thank you Lacy for the inspiration, I must say that things are looking up!

Note to future self: maybe don’t start a cleanse before you have unpacked the garage. It’s beginning to look a lot like hoarder status on our back steps. #realtalk.

Something I mentioned in early February was that I felt scattered writing in so many places all of the time. Well, it’s been 2.5 months and I am still feeling a little un-grounded in terms of stream lining my writing practice. A big part of that is of course the move and also feeling like I need to keep up with the crazy machine that is Instagram. I know. I know it’s not real and that there is nothing to actually keep up with there. And on many days I can set my screaming little attention starved ego aside and recognize that there is an incredible, magnificent world outside of my iPhone, and if I take two seconds to look at the hummingbirds in the front lawn I will remember how awesome real life is. And another part of all of this is missing L.A. and my friends and wanting to keep with all the new places that are opening up in my old neighborhood.

Oh there are loads of feelings to be felt in this space between here and there. In this space of right here right now. The practice of getting okay with this place. This place where my office is still in boxes. This place where I am a little unsure how my life going to work out. This place where it’s challenging to recognize that rest and relaxation doesn’t have to equal depression. This place where I decide what constitutes an authentic writing practice. This place where I am revisited by ghosts from my past and am learning even more about boundaries. This place where not doing anything huge and important on the outside is actually moving mountains on the inside. This place where if I can just remember to let my breath go and allow myself feel, all will be okay.

And the thing is, it isn’t about the writing. My practice will be grounded when I am grounded. My life will slow down when I slow down. My ego will take the back seat when I let my heart run the show, fully, completely, and without hesitation. It is possible. I’ve been there. I will be there again. Right now I am here, smack dab in the middle of uncertainty and truth be told I am even enjoying it. Just a little.

So tonight, on this clear and receptive full moon my humble prayer is this:

May I breathe into the discomfort and create space for my destiny to reveal itself.

May I soften the rigid places in my thinking and craft new beliefs around what it means to work.

May I find balance in the ups and downs that are part of this transition and part of life.

May I confront any lies I’ve been telling myself and others in favor of radical vulnerability and collective healing.

May I stand strong like a tree, flexible in the wind and rooted in the present.

May I turn inward in times of fear and learn to trust in the wisdom and knowing of my heart.

All my heart.


Photo x Anaïs & Dax


  • Julia Piantini

    These words mean so much for me tonight. So comforting to know that we’re never alone :)

    • ashley

      You are so welcome Julia. Thank you for taking the time to share that, you made my night! Sending love your way. x

  • Hi Ashley, this new beginning sounds so exciting! And inspiring as well! Enjoy it! Btw., may I borrow a phrase from you? I somehow always need more time than others to process feelings and situations (or I take the time to process things). Then I usually sit somewhere in silence for a while until people come and tell me to stop pondering. From now on I would like to respond, “I am not pondering, I am moving mountains on the inside.” :-) Happy Easter holidays to you! Corina

    • ashley

      Hi dear Corina!
      I always love connecting with you. Yes, please borrow away and make it your own ;) Oh I need lots of time to digest my feelings too, I totally get it. Thinking of you and sending light and joy your way. Have a fantastic rest of the week! x

  • Holly Ulasovich

    This is great, and—like the other commenters—rings so very true for me too. Seems we are all moving mountains. ❤

    • ashley

      Hi Holly,
      Oh we sure are! Thank you for being here and for chiming in, it feels good to be in community together. x

  • Stephen Yoo

    I love LA. It’s home. When I moved to the East Bay, I thought I was in another country. I longed for the weekend trip home every month and breathed a sigh of relief once I got to Santa Barbara because I was almost home. Even though I loved San Fran, it took me about two yrs to really fall in love with the Bay Area. But like any love that takes time to light the fire, it still burns till this day (even though I no longer live in the Bay Area). It’s a love affair that lasted 7 years and I wasted the first two. I love all the hiking trails along the hills, just minutes away from civilization, yet it feels desolate. I still watch “Check Please! Bay Area” to note culinary gems that I want to try next time I’m there. (You’d be a great guest on that show). Just don’t say “the 101, the 880, or the 580.” It’s a dead giveaway that you’re from SoCal. You take “101, to 880, to 580.”

    • ashley

      Stephen your comments totally cracked me up! Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences, I relate and I needed to read your words today. I am jumping in with both feet and while I miss L.A. dearly I know deep down I’m supposed to live up here. I love what you wrote about the hiking trails, sometimes I hike by my house here for an hour and see no other people! It’s the compete opposite of hiking in Griffith Park which is why it’s so incredible really. Wishing you a wonderful rest of the week and thanks again for making me laugh. x

  • Valerie

    Ashley, you may not be writing as consistently as you’d like, but your writing hasn’t suffered at all. This piece is beautiful and some of your best writing I’ve read <3

    • ashley

      Hello Valerie,
      Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment and for the support. I really appreciate your thoughtfulness and have more fuel to keep on keeping on. Wishing you a wonderful rest of the week! x

  • Erin Gael

    Welcome to the Bay Area! I’m so happy you’re here. :) If you are looking for any suggestions about fun things to do/amazing healers/great yoga teachers, don’t hesitate to reach out!

    • ashley

      Thanks for the warm welcome Erin! I will for sure ;) Wishing you a wonderful weekend! x

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