Last weekend we met Judy and it was magic. In the afternoon before our dinner some of us read aloud her biography and sat in communal awe under its towering branches and fruits. 

When we met her and while she shared about the old sheet tomato party, murder mystery videos, what she left behind and what she grew with love and compassion, I was feeling immense gratitude for the magic of whole stories, and learning that a biography can contain only figments of what it means to know someone, heads without bodies or souls, that create a hazy distance instead of drawing closer. How full the stories feel, that make the biographies and facts and earmarks that once felt full feel faint.

Maya later shared with us The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer and it’s kept me thinking about stories and the desire to know, and what I value knowing, and reminded me of laughing with Judy at dinner.

How do I know others and how do I share this knowledge of myself? My honest, brave, unsure, whole self? With a lightness that connects, brings wholeness, understands the limits and constructs and egos of human-ness and the softness, the desires, what we’ve left behind that grounds and roots us. How do we let this knowledge contour love, and let this love heal us and weave us together? 

Thank you Judy for being with us, sharing your stories and your self, for your work, for the fun and for the lightness you brought, for the lesson in living, in valuing, in knowing.

Alessia Cutugno