Welcome to Modern Mammal-ing!

This weekly newsletter is for YOU—my highly sensing, deep feeler, fellow human mammal living in the modern era. That’s a mouthful because the world is a mouthful these days. Expanding. Crumbling. Changing faster than we can blink. So, how do we live well amidst it all? If you are wondering too, pull up a chair (or lounge on the grass).

I once cracked myself up by creating a hashtag I couldn’t ever use due to my breakup with social media: #mammalingwhilemodern. I wanted to know: how the hell do we mammal (yes, it’s a verb) while living in this fast-paced time of high volume digital information, over-saturation, distraction, ill-health and general crush? As in, c’mon! Are we all accepting this? Am I really supposed to grow my capacity to tolerate the new normal? Can I preserve my attention, and be here instead of disassociated and avoiding and de-sensitized? Is it possible to stay connected with myself, my animal body, the people and our earth? How do we live as opted-in members of current society and still create a sustainable life for ourselves and others. What are we to do?

I am living these questions actively and daily.

My intention is to write into these raw questions and create a space where, together, we boldly approach a wall of closed windows and begin to open them. Side by side. Hand in hand. Community is the way to freedom. Crowd-sourcing fosters a steady and healthy ecosystem. The comment section is for you! Bring yourself to it if you like.

I believe we are all the medicine for this moment. That may be melodramatic and wildly exciting and a bit devastating. Even so, do you smell the opportunity? I want to listen within and with one ear to the ground. In this newsletter, I abandon the soundbite culture and explore the messy. Good, real-deal, straight talk vibes. Plus I’m playful. My lens will be what I know best: story + nervous system.

Years ago, one starlit night, my mother and I burned my grandmother’s old chair in a bonfire—to my amazement, these gorgeous metal springs emerged from the coals. Look how sturdy! Animated. Alive. They now hang on my wall, interlocked in a dance, a reminder of well-made functional art and the profound and possible transformation available to all of us. We grow up and down spirals. We take many shapes. We are change-able. “We” meaning individuals and communities and humanity. Evolution is decidedly not a lone wolf path. It can’t be. We are designed to be social animals.

What’s the rhythm?

One Newsletter per week. That’s 4x a month. *I’ve been writing my newsletter since 2019 and many readers asked for an archive so I’ve created this home. I won’t bring all my old material over here (because I don’t really believe in back-tracking or “catching-up” and why add more noise?), but it’s good for you all to know that this newsletter is riding in the wide wake of the old one.

  • New Moon Nervous System: When the lunar cycle offers a fresh start, I will bring us into the workings of our nervous system, this primal and “unseen” part of us that guides most of our actions whether we know it or not. You can expect some applicable anecdotes from my life + a “posture prompt” + casual and fun psycho-education about somatics. Trauma is a buzz word. That’s good and helpful but we are focused here on everyday small moves toward resilience.

  • Full Moon Narrative Voice: A robust and bright moon invites expression, reflection, and seeing. I will dive into how we story ourselves (and our people) to ourselves and others, exploring the under-used power of intentional narrative and being a mammal of metaphor or animal poet. You can expect bits of my current personal story + a “speaking prompt” + explorations and examples of story-making and its impact at large.

For Paid Subscribers: I send TWO MORE newsletters and invite you on a much more intimate, on-the-ground journey with me. The first letter explores my inner workings of a personal but universal question I’m grappling with currently; the second letter updates in the form of a vlog along with me sharing resources, any research I find, books I’m reading or not reading, as well as testing new frontiers with my own artistry. Topics might include art-making, the body (my fave), re-negotiating relationships, existing with tech, parenting, coupling, health (mental, physical, physiological and psycho-spiritual), anything animist, anything unseen, mysticism, climate realities, daily rhythms, old ways intersecting with new ways, a life beyond burnout, creative practice, Nature, being in community, dismantling stuck patterns and anything that moves me or feels alive for me and alive in the communal and global water. Essentially, welcome into my living room and life! Provocative and with the focus being useful to you and supporting everyone’s individual and collective orientation to this unprecedented era. You also get some discounts on workshops with me, so come on over!

  • **I’ve also got some ideas cooking about large group, one-time, short-form gatherings that would be expansive and resource re-circulating. Stay tuned.

If you can, thank you for paying: $5/month is one latte or tea or two chocolate bars or 1.5 subway rides. Creativity is undervalued by our capitalist system. Paying for art is essential, especially if we want a vibrant and functional world. It also helps support me in supporting you. Boom!

Here I am with the two humans who keep me going and growing. So much growing. Textured and tactile. Just how I want to live life.

Also, mammaling is a gerund. Mammal-ing. It’s a verb in action. We are living it as we go. It doesn’t end. It isn’t tidy. But it sure is interesting.

If you don’t know my work, you can read more about the why and how and who of it. Do you know someone who might dig these topics and exploration? Loop them in. We grow in community. Thank you!

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exploring how to stay connected to our most elemental selves in a world changing faster that anyone can metabolize (if you dig story and nervous system, join us!)


Molly Caro May

botanical human, mama of daughters, 3rd culture kid, author of Body Full of Stars, workshop facilitator for 14+ years, consumer of Salt & Vinegar anything, latitude lover, Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, minimalist, believer in circles.