essays by shé

Turning Toward

Turn toward. Did I hear that? Think it? Know it? I get out of bed and write it down. Turn toward. Don’t worry about turning away, turn toward YOU, turn toward happiness, turn toward your strengths, turn toward your desires.


I turn toward the mountains by hiking them. I turn toward the sea by playing in it. I turn toward a new family by contacting Big Sisters. I turn toward happiness by writing every day. I turn toward joy by dancing.

The relatives seem to believe that the world is a dangerous place, that I am dangerous, and so they attack. I stand up and say NOT SO FAST. It is hard, because I love them. I do not want to hurt them. But I will no longer allow them to hurt me. I will not let them derail my joy anymore.

It is easy to be pulled into the morass of blame and shame and pain — we’re all hurting. But I am trying to remember to turn toward compassion. Beauty. So I bike to Secrets and swim awhile. Lotta fish! and purple seaweed. The ocean supports me, and I rock with the swell. Peace. Eventually I get out and walk over to a small waterfall to rinse.

I remember sitting in the front yard in Olympia, Malamute Emmett by my side. The love I felt for him was immense, overwhelming, and I began to weep. Love flowed through me, changing and healing me as I loved on him. I was immersed in it, we both were.

I want to turn toward Love. There is nothing better in this world.

Emmett Ocean Shé, circa 2002
Emmett Ocean Shé, circa 2002





2 responses to “Turning Toward”

  1. Kevin Avatar

    This is a really beautiful piece–very evocative of both your state of mind and how you’re deeply connected to the natural world. Fantastic!

    1. Shé Avatar

      Thanks, cousin, I appreciate the encouragement.

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