“Boundaries are the distance at which I can love you and me simultaneously.”
Prentis Hemphill interview and book giveaway
Since M was born I have been having a hard time making new memories. I need tricks. I still forget. I have forgotten how I found out about Prentis Hemphill. I want to say they live in Oakland. But that’s not true. I asked them when I started BAKS if I could interview them, and it was around the time of the birth of their child.
I remember sitting at my phone for what seemed like forever trying to figure out the right thing to say to someone who was expecting their first child. I had just had mine not too long before that and had a newfound knowledge that nothing anyone could ever say could have prepared me for the day M arrived. And what followed.
The truth is, there is no right thing to say, or be. I said, “Good luck with your transition to parenthood.” When I say it now it sounds condescending, but I meant it in an open, accepting way. Whatever feelings or emotions the birth came with, I wanted to support those. Perhaps a wish for smooth transitions would have been a better choice of words.
Prentis is the Founder and Director of The Embodiment Institute and The Black Embodiment Initiative, and the host of the acclaimed podcast, Finding Our Way. I also am a super big Brené Brown fan and Prentis was featured in Atlas of The Heart.
They are not searching for answers, but rather connections. So I thought I basically begged Prentis to come and talk to me about healing and embodiment. About breaking down the boundaries between me and you and our bodies and minds and creating new understandings that offer support and comfort.
This week, we are doing a book giveaway, comment here if you would like a copy of “You Are Your Best Thing,” edited by Tarana Burke and Brené Brown featuring Prentis’ writing.
A few things I am grateful for and inspired by:
This episode of Hidden Brain on how your thoughts create your reality.
Also, thanks to everyone who came out to Book Passage in SF last week to see Gabrielle Blair talk. I am still in a fog of adoration for her.
A bunch of people asked where I got my dream outfit so I have to plug my favorite, Ali Golden. She made me feel so special. It’s weird how the clothes you wear can have such an impact on how you feel. This is complicated. Lucianne Tonti writes about this in her new book Sundressed: Natural Fibers and the Future of Fashion. It’s a love letter to her clothes.
Lastly, thanks for being here with me. I love doing this and I hope you LOVE Prentis. Their work is truly wonderful and healing and all the stuff that makes you feel loved and supported.
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Could what one feels after parenthood also be connected to how one has lived before that? I tried to live a full life & had a late child so after my son arrived nothing else was important. Not those Saturday night parties, not those hikes or late night movies.
I'm currently immersed in the project of learning as much as I can about trauma and trauma stewardship, particularly in regards to cultural, historical, or generational forms of trauma. What a beautiful gift Tarana Burke, Brené Brown, Prentis Hill, and others have given us all--in sharing their wisdom and stories through this book. I can't wait to read it!