A place of practice for modern mammals.
We are full and launched!
Doors open again in December 2023.
The Loam is...
more than a membership
where I can be my ever-evolving Self
so nourishing, so attuned
a deep aquifer of realness
How do we practice? The Loam is a place of belonging, re-wilding, intentional slow, creation, sharing, discernment, cyclical-living, rituals, growing, mystery, and un-learning. We are a vibrant global community grounded in the shared exploration of age-old story making and nervous system science. Nothing about our process is prescriptive. Our space is brave, playful, no bullshit, loving, electric and subterranean. We spend the concentrated arc of a year together and most continue on for the following year.
We come together to liberate ourselves from no-longer-adaptive programming and to recapture our own artistry and attention in a rapid and often distracted 21st century world. How do you rhythm (yes, it's a verb) yourself and your life? Let's undo the over-doing culture. Let's lean into spiral layered learning. Why? To inhabit our true creative aliveness! Enter then: the very real ripple effect, a deep collective reclamation.
Loam [lohm]: a fertile soil consisting of a mixture of sand, clay, and decaying organic material.
The Loam is 1) the actual soil of earth, 2) the ecosystem of your people and place 3) and the particular divine essence within you. It is the source, from where we make, compost and renew/restore. If we develop our relationship with it, we grow in all directions: upward, downward, forward, backward, inward.
Your mammal-self knows how. In the company of others, you attune to nature's seasons to track your particular internal, external and ancestral rhythms. Anyone living anywhere can do this. We use the non-calendar frame of the equinoxes and solstices because it is familiar to all land-based cultures (which means all) across time. The fire stays continually lit at the circle/feed (aka "Loam Home") where we share, reflect and see one another. Of course, you could explore this process alone. But, growth and learning amplifies in community! What transpires? Real deal traction, accountability, impulse honing, preference-building and growth.
What if there was nothing to catch-up on? Truly.
What if you could access your particular deepest impulses and dance with them?
Does your life (do you) crave ceremony?
Are you tired and disillusioned by the rat race?
Do you want to live in accordance with nature (no, this doesn't require living in the woods)?
Where does this practice originate?
From Molly: I am part of a lineage (as are you) of people who once aligned their lives to natural cycles. The Loam is rooted in old and current knowing of first peoples everywhere. My particular synthesis and lived-experience of it comes from my Northwestern European forest-dwelling heritage in pre-colonial Ireland and England, a reckoning with my matrilineal colonizing ancestors on the Mayflower and my patrilineal ones who, as metallurgists, partook in the earth-stripping copper mines of Chile, my childhood living in 5 countries surrounded by cultures different than my own, an inborn intuitive "hearing" of the botanical world, my early adulthood immersion into menstrual and moon cycles, a continued Gen-X watchful eye on how technology and social media are shaping our collective attention, a deep, decades-long creative and professional practice and teaching of story alchemy, the humbling and honor of continued shadow/revelatory work in motherhood and longterm partnership, a hardy 3-year education in nervous system resilience building, and a reverential relationship with a 20-acre triangular hill of land where I dwell in the Gallatin Valley of Montana, unceded land known as Ahkoto waktai Sakum ("Many Come Together Country") or "Valley of the Flowers" a place once shared as common gathering, hunting and ceremonial ground for 11 American Indian nations, on which I am now a modern-day White settler. That's the short story in a long-form sentence. This is how it comes through me; now, how does it come through you? Nothing in The Loam is prescriptive. It is a space and place where you explore the terrain of YOU.
Who is this for?
You are likely curious about natural rhythms and exploring them alongside others who, like you, may identify as a rebel, or with the archetypes or real-world identities of wild one, healer, seer, witch/wizard, creative-maker, space-holder. You desire a map of sorts, a check-in place, one of self-accountability and growth, a shared space in which to track, witness and be witnessed. You are dedicated to collective liberation, social justice, and remain committed to your version of that action. Though it can feel hard to find another way, you know, in your bones, that the modern busy crush of life isn't the answer.
The Loam is for those who identify as women or non-binary. Why? You've been the consistent base and majority drawn to my work. I offer my best magic in that environment, at least for now.
**Southern Hemisphere dwellers? I structured The Loam in rhythm with the Northern Hemisphere because 1) I live in it and 2) it is the origin place of my ancestors. 3) most (not all) of my workshop participants live north of the equator. You are welcome to join, knowing that we will be in opposite seasonal exploration of what you are living. Only you will know whether that could be fruitful. :)
Our space is intentionally minimalist, quality-over-quantity and founded on the truth that traction comes from slow and sustained doing.
Everything is recorded so you can watch anytime.
One short prompt from me to orient you around a story + nervous system exploration for the next seven days. For example: “Where in my life do I push?”
One secret tracking that has made big impact for everyone.
One 2-hour Workshop on a theme aligned to the season. Examples: Darkness, Rest, Glimmer, Attraction, Flux. We play with prompts in the container of connection, writing, survival physiology explorations, out loud story-sharing and responding.
One 1-hour Teahouse session which functions like sitting with trusted friends around tea: for questions, tracking, noticing, break-out rooms, and true togetherness. Cozy and connecting.
One 1-hour Sow + Tell led by Saadia. It's a space for the second moment when you can bring a discovery or creation to another and be witnessed. To see and be seen. With lots of laughs and tears.
One Wilderness Map (a visual) to track how your external terrain converses with your internal, through story, nervous system and artistry.
One Seasonal Transition Ceremony: on the 21st of Dec, Mar, Jun and Sept at 10am or 6pm MT. We name what we've discovered in the season before and welcome the new season ahead.
One Playlist to capture the moods (+ the moods within the moods) of the season, as well as to offer your body an external stimuli to respond to as another way to track and notice.
*The monthly events happen Tues/Wed/Thurs/Fri, either at 8, 9 or 10am MT and 6 or 7pm MT to accommodate everyone. So, if only days or only nights work for you, you know that every month, you can attend at least 1 of the 2 live gatherings.
What are the takeaways?
A brave and inspired community of fellow wonderers and wanderers; plus connection to people who live near you.
Real integration of a new earth-based and pleasure-full pace.
Practices that stick and foster empowerment.
Interaction with me. It's not a faceless membership. I am THERE.
Inherent self-soothing. Creativity is very organizing for our human bodies because "making” anything artful actually regulates our nervous system. Research has also shown that expressive writing is linked to improved wellbeing, mood, and less stress. You fall into a trance-like quality and focus, much like meditation.
Intimacy with your own personalized ways of being with ritual.
Exclusive discounts on my in-person retreats and Story Mammal workshops.
What you won't get (on purpose): A massive archive of old workshops to sift through, 10 or 1,000 bonuses, worksheets for days, clutter or anything that initiates a feeling of “I must do more.”
When do the doors open?
This is your monetary investment and it's a worthy exercise to identify all the intangible ways you are investing in yourself by choosing a community that feels aligned. Read the testimonials. Feel into it. Then shop around. Suss out your right place. My work doesn't draw everyone. No one's work does. But when there's a match, it's magic. We are a super playful and soulful bunch. If you feel drawn to me and my vibe and this membership, come join us! I do trust that people find the people and experiences they need. The Loam doors open once a year on the Winter Solstice in mid-December. You can choose a month-to-month membership or annual for a discount. If you aren't already on my mailing list, scroll down and sign up and you'll then be in the loop for all to come.
Why This, Why Now?
We are alive during a very saturated and overly-noisy era... and, we are born for this moment. Old systems are collapsing and we are being called to make new ones—within us and around us. That requires presence. It necessitates that we be in radical and continued touch with our own creative impulses. “Re-wild” is a hip buzz word these days. What does that actually mean, for you, for me, for all of us? Well, it’s a returning, a re-making, and perhaps a requirement for living with vitality in this now-new world.
I am so grateful for this community. Together, with Molly's guidance, we are creating a new way of being in the digital space that feels vibrant and connecting. I carry the prompts, workshops, comments and inspiration with me in all that I do.
I come here for realness. To connect with real people who feel real life in all its hard and messy and beautiful. I find inspiration. No one knows me but everyone knows things about me that no one in my life does. It’s a place of complete acceptance, where there are no boxes around me, where no one expects anything of me. The door is always open and I come and go at will.
The Loam is like a hot cup of miso soup on a cold and cloudy day. I don't have to show up perfect or put together. Somehow through time and space, I am transported into a place of connection and belonging. A place where I feel seen and heard. I listen to others' stories (and feel so much less alone).
The Loam feels essential! I’ve created more ceremony and meaning in my life with this necessary, fertile ground where I can lay down, stomp, rage, sit or wonder in being human. And our group feed has the quality of ancestral landscape or folklore or mystery or psyche; somewhere that walks with you always, reliably present for the next dive in.
Who is your guide?
MOLLY CARO MAY
I’ve taught and facilitated personal story workshops for 12+ years—as space-holder, listener, weaver, and playful spark-plug. I am trained in Somatic Experiencing, a 3-year study of trauma resolution as developed by Dr. Peter Levine and run by Somatic Experiencing International. That said, whole indigenous cultures, not one man, are the creators of somatic healing. I have learned in workshops and trainings from Dr. Abi Blakeslee, Raja Selvam, Karine Bell, Resmaa Menakem, Weena Pauly-Tarr, Kathy Kain, and Kimberly Ann Johnson. My literary and language study originates from youth, college, documentary writing training, participating in writer's groups, reading and editing stacks of manuscripts as an assistant in a New York City publishing house, coaching writers, and the long-haul hard work of writing two published books. Where language/voice meets the animal body is my jam. As a child, I made the declaration that I wanted to live in a home where there was story to everything around me. Being "in relationship" to life and full of meaning is my soul song. My dear friend Jen Bloomer of Radici Studios designed The Loam's pen & ink logo; the four nature photos are taken by me spontaneously of places I know well; I sat down at my kitchen table one late night and drew the circle drawings with sharpie on computer paper. I dig the unvarnished, tactile, honest life as it is the one I make with my partner love Christopher and our two bright-eyed children. There's more, of course. Many past workshop participants have told me that building community is my wheelhouse. Some still meet up and continually say: "I've met some of my best friends in your spaces!" SO, let's do this. Let's make something mythic together.
I’m a biracial Pakistani-American educator, born and raised in Brooklyn, NY/Lenapehoking. I am a mother of two daughters who make my world spin, partnered with a tender tender of plants, daughter of a Punjabi immigrant poet and a steadfast Southern-Italian-Brooklynite, the spiritual descendant of an 11th Century Sufi saint, and the middle strand in a braid of sisters. I grew up straddling cultures and continents, always feeling like I existed in the “between places.” What I quickly came to find was that the between places are full of incredible stories. I’ve spent my life and my career tending the seeds of my own stories and creating spaces for others to tell theirs. As an educator for over 16 years, I’ve worked with children, young adults, and adults in many different contexts and capacities, inside and outside of traditional classroom spaces, and always, always in co-creation. I believe that learning can and should be liberatory and that liberation happens in community. I believe in abolition. I am in a committed relationship with hope. I am fiercely tender. I laugh and cry copiously. I love enormously. I live for stories. And I am so honored and elated to co-create these spaces with all of you.
Meet Saadia Khalid
Facilitator of Sow + Tell