Loving and (reluctantly) leaving podcasting
There and back again: revisiting my time as co-host of the Edit Your Life podcast
You know March Madness? Well, this is January Weirdness, when some of us are settling back into our lives and jobs, whereas others are engaged in the Velcro-ripping process of sending our kids and adults back to school. I see you.
Our winter break was good and a bit eggshell-y as we tried to heap love on Mirabai without smothering her. She needed recovery time and solitude after a punishing Fall semester.
You never know who’s gonna walk through that door in December, do you?
Rael and I kept to the periphery and did our best to read the room, but we also had good family bonding time over french toast, Lord of the Rings, and our favorite pho (Mekha on Sandy Blvd. in NE Portland).
She flew back Monday, squaring her shoulders as the second half of college junior year gets underway.
The ache of Mirabai’s departure fades more quickly each time. I’ve pivoted back to my work in progress tweaking my day-to-day rhythms.
Did you know I used to co-host a podcast?
Based on your survey responses (more on that later), quite a few of you first met me via Edit Your Life, the podcastand I co-hosted from 2015-2021. For those five+ years, co-hosting Edit Your Life with Christine was the central rhythm in my writerly/Internet life.
Since then, Christine has taken the show to a new level as solo host.1 A few weeks ago, she invited me to catch listeners up on what I’ve been up to since I “retired,” and share how I’m recentering myself now that I’ve emerged from the emotional intensity of the last few years.
The episode just went live:
Listen: Edit Your Life: Centering Yourself in the Sandwich Generation (with Asha Dornfest), or search “Edit Your Life” in your podcast player.
Christine’s interview questions gave me a safe, loving way to reconsider the journey from then till now. The muscle memory of our podcasting and years of friendship opened mental doors that have been stubbornly closed to my writing.
The rhythm of podcasting
Christine and I “met” via email in 2006, when we were both new bloggers. We became instant friends even though it took till 2010 for us to meet in person. In 2012 we travelled to Ethiopia with the ONE Campaign, and in 2013, we co-authored Minimalist Parenting (affiliate link/policy). After the book was published there was more to say, so we launched Edit Your Life in 2015.
As a writer/podcaster, my weeks followed a rhythm of daily touchpoints and weekly production tasks: brainstorming topics, drafting and editing episode maps, and early-morning recording sessions (we live on opposite coasts, but I’m a morning person so the time zone difference worked in our favor).
We discussed a wide range of parenting and lifestyle topics from the perspective of two friends comparing notes and doing our best under the circumstances.
I loved it.
Why I had to step away from Edit Your Life
It was all going so well, until it wasn’t.
That’s howdescribed his sudden realization that something had to change. It was like that for me, too, even though I didn’t want to admit it.
…all at once I was struck by the awareness that I was standing on the precipice of an entirely unfamiliar life.
I suddenly realized I was flying blind. Talking about life with any sense of wisdom or self-knowledge was no longer possible. It would be like trying to lead a tour in an unfamiliar city.
Christine’s generous prompting in this week’s podcast episode helped me articulate why I had to step away from podcasting even though I loved it (and her):
I could not quickly turn around on what was happening to me and describe it. I had to sit there, stunned and silent for a time, so I could actually find the words.
I’ll leave the rest to the episode. There’s more, including this newsletter’s role in the story.
Our conversation helped me appreciate how much my emotional landscape has changed, and the solid ground I’m standing on today. Thank you, Christine. 🌈
If it isn’t already, I hope you’ll make Edit Your Life a regular listen. Christine brings singular depth and kindness to each episode, along with her trademark practicality.
Notes, links, and other bits of goodness ✨
MORE CHRISTINE at @edityourlifeshow on Instagram andon Substack.
I was thrilled to read that vaccines help protect against long COVID, the more doses, the better. If you haven’t yet gotten the most recent COVID vaccination, now’s the time.
To be able to see change is to be able to make change. I’m an advocate for slowness, not in the sense of dragging your feet or delaying your reaction but in the sense of scaling your perception to to perceive the events unfolding, because I’m an advocate for making change.
— Rebecca Solnit, Slow Change Can Be Radical Change
Have a lovely weekend. Let me know what you think about anything I’ve written here (including January Weirdness).
See you in the comments,
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Thanks for reading Parent of Adults, a newsletter and ongoing conversation about life beyond the empty nest with writer Asha Dornfest and a smart, kind community of readers.
Asha is the author of Parent Hacks: 134 Genius Shortcuts for Life with Kids, inspired by her decade-long community blog. She co-authored Minimalist Parenting: Enjoy Family Life More by Doing Less with Christine Koh, which led to co-hosting 250+ episodes of the Edit Your Life podcast.
By solo host, I mean that Christine comes up with the show topics, writes the scripts, organizes the guests, records the shows, works with the sound editor, does the back-end work, designs and produces the graphics, works with the podcast network, executes the sponsor requirements, and does the social media. SHE’S AN INTERNET UNICORN. 🦄