An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

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In case you hadn’t heard, I am moving this column over to my Substack newsletter, Let Your Life Speak. Today is my last weekly Walk With Me column here on Medium. Please join us over at the newsletter!

The last year has been transformational for me. My life is very different now than the life I was living when I began this project a year ago. Yet I have still managed, through all the transformation, to show up here every week. I’m very proud of that.


An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

In case you hadn’t heard, I am moving this column over to my Substack newsletter, Let Your Life Speak, and rolling it into the work I do over there. Please, join me!

I’ll still be re-posting material from the newsletter over here on Medium intermittently, but it won’t be such a regular thing. The newsletter appears magically in your email inbox every Monday and Friday, so if you want regular access to my writing you should come on over and subscribe.

Writing this column has been…


An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Photo by Jack Finnigan on Unsplash

Dear Asha,

Questions are all well and good, but I’m kind of in the market for answers. Have you got any of those?

QK

Dear QK,

Short answer, sorry to say: No.

Longer answer: Oh, honey. I get it. This whole not knowing what will happen, what is coming, or what all the consequences will be is just more than my soul can take some days. It is exhausting. I would just like someone to tell me what to do.

The great irony is that when…


An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Photo by Floyd Cox on Unsplash

Dear Asha,

You write a lot about integrity and “living into our wholeness”, but how does that actually work? I mean, the “living into wholeness” part. Is that even really possible? It seems like I’m always just fumbling along, doing the best I can with what’s right in front of me before I get slammed by the next thing.

The idea of wholeness just leaves me feeling like a failure.

Partially yours,

FEM

Dear FEM,

I was thinking about your letter when I woke in the…


An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

I found this heart, frozen under ice, during my last potent grieving. I began to learn then not to freeze my grief by ignoring it or avoiding it, but instead to let it flow. I’m still learning.

Dear Friends,

I woke up this morning in the firm grip of grief, and as is so often the way with me, I happened upon an article that spoke directly to my condition. This NPR piece, The Importance of Mourning Losses (Even When They Seem Small), offers wisdom on the necessity of making space for grief, and the courage required. In the interview, which I encourage you to listen to in its entirety, therapist David Dafoe talks about how we normalize healthy grieving:

It takes a…


An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Photo by Holly Rouselle on Unsplash

Dear Asha,

I have been trying to write you a question for months now, but I can’t figure out what it is exactly. The words won’t come. When I try to write them down I know they aren’t right, but the right ones are sitting there at the corner of my eye and when I turn towards them they disappear.

What if I ask the wrong question? I’m afraid of what will happen.

WTF

Dear WTF,

I was talking to a friend yesterday about the nature…


an advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

Dear Asha,

People ask me how a family member’s gender-expression transition is going from time to time. But I don’t actually know; in as much as I feel like that’s personal, medical stuff and I would be happy to be told, but don’t feel it’s my place to ask. Am I being overly discreet?

BBN

Dear BBN,

Is your question whether or not you are being overly discreet in not asking your family member who is transitioning how things are going, or whether or not you’re…


an advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Photo by Walter Leininger from Pexels

Dear Asha,

Six years ago, my daughter was born in early November, a red-headed, left-handed Scorpio. She was supposed to be born in early January, so she was premature — in the NICU and subsequently had several surgeries. But now she’s in great health; she’s a fighter.

Like today, I walked to pick her up from kindergarten with her little brother in tow in a wagon. I thought they could walk home and I could use the wagon to store her MASSIVE (for a child) roller…


an advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Photo by tabitha turner on Unsplash

Dear Asha,

Lockdown, shelter in place, stay at home, mask up, social distance, physical distance — 6 feet, 3 feet. Work from home. School on Zoom. Collective and personal grief. Has it been awful ? Yes. Have there been moments of joy? Yes.

I have loved staying home with no plans, no packed weekends, which is not to say I don’t miss going out to dinner or to a movie. …


An advice column for folks who don’t like to be told what to do

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Dear Asha,

My son is about to graduate from high school (God willing). He is an amazing and unusual kid in many ways. He’s had to grow up faster than most, living in two homes since he was two when his dad and I split. He’s also had to navigate the waters of having a mother with complex and severe, debilitating diseases. I missed much of his middle school and early high school years bc I was physically stuck in bed.

My son did an internship…

Asha Sanaker

Asking questions, telling stories, giving my people information they can use to make change happen.

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