Today I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Sas. We met online back in 2010 and our first in-person date was actually a whole weekend at my place in Bath (I’ve since learned that Mr P not only drove her from their home in London but hung around nearby in case I was a psycho and she needed rescuing. Ha!) Since then we’ve been on plenty of escapades and put the world to rights MANY times. Sas recently stepped into her true calling as a life transformer (aka life coach) and I honestly can’t think of anyone more suited to that job. This month she’s leading the first session of emBODYment, her online program for women who want body peace — how awesome does that sound?
She asked me to share the Soundtrack to my Life over on her blog today, so I thought it only right that she does the same over here. Meet Sas!
When were you happiest? Right now, is marvellous. Most of the last decade has been about healing; working through grief and all the ‘stuff’ brought up by this big love with Mr P, irrecoverably changing my body with kindness, and stretching into my real purpose. I turn 40 in a couple of months and I feel awake, open, happy and so grateful. Nora Ephron was so right: ‘everything is copy’.
What was the most important thing that happened to you as a child? I had open heart surgery at four years old to correct a hereditary Atrial Septal Defect and Pulmonary Murmur (which is just fancy talk for a heart with a hole in it and an extra beat). In the early 1970s in New Zealand, this was an experimental procedure. Because she never expected me to survive, Mum poured everything into my early years – I could read and write from the age of three. Every day was an amazing adventure.
To whom would you most like to say sorry, and why? to Mum. For taking the precious years we had together completely for granted.
What song best explains the soundtrack to your teenage life? Must I Paint you a Picture, Billy Bragg
What does love feel like? It’s like coming home; its so simple and easy. And yet its profoundly extraordinary. It took me a long time to learn how to be loved. And to love myself.
What is the dumbest thing you have done in the name of love? So many things! From awful teenage poetry, to losing my self-belief.
What three qualities must/does your life partner possess? He is thoughtful, kind, and he makes me laugh.
What is your favourite love song? Feeling Good, Nina Simone and Keep Me In Your Heart, Warren Zevon
What is your secret job title? Wielder of the Magic.
What traits do you deplore in others? Any kind of fundamentalism – there is just no room for possibility.
What is your greatest life lesson (so far)? We are not our thoughts, feelings, bodies or actions. At the root of the root of all of us and everything, is love.
What song would you like played at your funeral? Goodbye Old Girl, Art Farmer and Short People, Randy Newman
What is your most treasured possession? A handwritten letter from Mum.
What is your favourite daily ritual? I recently bought a vibrating face cleanser (really) and it has changed my freakin’ life! I use it every morning and night and I love how soft and smooth my skin is.
Who are the five people you would love to host at afternoon tea? I have so many questions for Janet Frame, Buckminster Fuller, Christopher Hitchens, Julia Child and my maternal grandmother who died a decade before I was born.
What song feels like home? Not Given Lightly, Chris Knox. This song is the smell of a BBQ and sunscreen and the sand between my toes. Its the sound of clinking glasses and the kids playing beach cricket. There’s nothing quite like a New Zealand summer evening *homesick face*
How do you take care of your body? Tonnes of water, SPF 86, rest and play. And good chocolate.
What has your body taught you? Everything. Who I am in the world is all because of my body. I navigate every decision in my life through my intuition (Sas Nav. Ha.) which lives in my body. I have such a deep, conscious trust for my body which feels kind of miraculous given how long I was completely indifferent to it.
If reincarnation is a thing, what body do you want to possess in your next life? No question: a beloved cat.
What song never fails to make you feel un-freakin-stoppable? Born Slippy, Underworld
What feeds your soul? Stories. There is nothing like an uninterrupted hour with a book. Or a conversation with someone who knows me well and loves me anyway.
What do people thank you for? For showing up and for the laughs.
If you were to be remembered for one thing, what would you like it to be? For being the kind of friend you could count on to help hide the body.
What song feels like it was written about you? Let Go, Frou Frou
[Photos by Xanthe Berkeley]