Issue 81 | Our January Community Gatherings!
Dear Cosmos Community,
How can we bring Asian women together? This question is my motivation for building The Cosmos, but it’s also kept me up at night for the past two years of the pandemic.
In the darkest days (new variant annoucement, surging cases, etc), I worry that The Cosmos shouldn’t bother to exist at all. It feels both unsafe and unnecessary to bring people together when doing so can risk individual and public health. The Cosmos did a whole year of solely virtual events (oh, 2020), but we quickly reached the limits of Zoom as a platform for community building. Trying so hard to make the platform work for building community made the result — a heightened sense of disconnection — even more disappointing.
I’m self-aware of my intense inner critic, but I also hold myself to a high standard, because bad community events can discourage folks from trying again. So many of us walk around scarred from being the misfit or the bullied, and an event where you’re standing in the corner alone pretending to scroll on your phone all night is enough to bring all that back to mind. I can’t stand to think that any event I produce might have that effect, even if unintentionally, because, well, I’m very familiar with being that person in the corner!!
I’m still treading carefully, but I’ve operated in this binary — no community! all community! — for too long. This year, I’m committing to thinking creatively about how The Cosmos can bring Asian women together — in person, safely, in New York City and beyond. If you have requests for The Cosmos, or are up for sharing how you feel about gathering in person (with masks!), I’d love to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For now, I’d like to invite you to two community gatherings this month — one’s virtual and one’s in person at Yu and Me Books, the first Asian American female-led bookstore in NYC! You can RSVP below :)
To all the misfits,
Editor of The Care Package & Co-Founder of The Cosmos
Mon, Jan 17 | 3-6 PM ET, 12-3 PM PT | VIRTUAL
A *virtual* retreat for Asian women to set intentions for the new year!
This is your space to be intentional about what you'd like to bring into 2022... without the pressure to set ambitious goals, be productive, or have your sh*t together. Come in your PJs, bathrobe, and fuzzy slippers! Bring a friend, a cup of tea, lots of snacks, and your fave journal! You're invited to curl up on the couch, giggle, and relax in community with us :)
WHAT TO EXPECT
Journaling prompts to reflect on 2021
Guided meditation to visualize, imagine, and dream the year ahead
Community arts + crafts time to create your vision board
Small group time to connect with like-minded Asian women
A yummy guided relaxation practice to nourish your mind, body, and spirit
Thurs, Jan 20 | 7 PM ET | CHINATOWN, NEW YORK
Join The Cosmos & Yu and Me Books, the first Asian American female-owned bookstore in NYC, for an evening of co-creation, conversation, and books :)
*THIS IS AN IN PERSON EVENT. VACCINATION + BOOSTER REQUIRED FOR ATTENDANCE. EVERYONE WILL BE MASKED DURING THE EVENT*
What does community care look like in 2022? How might books by our favorite Asian authors provide examples we can learn from? :)
It's year three of the pandemic — we’ve dealt with an onslaught of uncertainty, anxiety, change, grief, loneliness (insert difficult feeling of choice).
So it’s time to give yourself a hug — wrap your arms around your shoulders. YES. And then, join The Cosmos and Yu and Me Books for an evening of yummy community conversation in Chinatown, New York. We'll talk openly about the role of community care in these weird times, and most importantly, *feel* that care, during this gathering. We’ll design the kind of community care that feels authentic to us, and practice it in our evening together.
We'll draw from themes in Sequoia Nagamatsu's How High We Go in the Dark, a newly released science fiction collection of stories illustrating how humans rebuild from let's just say it, apocalyptic, times. This event is made possible with the generous partnership of Yu and Me Books and William Morrow, a division of HarperCollins.
Admission is first come, first serve. We can fit ~30 people in the space with proper COVID precautions!