whoops, so much for excessive navel-gazing in december. my inbox is full of reverb10 writing prompts. some bug me, others intrigue me. i’m gonna respond to them all, right here, stream of consciousness style. here goes…
prompt #8 : beautifully different.
Think about what makes you different and what you do that lights people up. Reflect on all the things that make you different – you’ll find they’re what make you beautiful. –Karen Walrond
first of all, the 2nd sentence bugs me. a lot. i don’t really want to be told how to feel about what i come up with here. that said, ummm… i’ve got a pretty good mix of serious & goofy. a crooked smile and an odd combination of willing-to-shock and occasional bouts of puritanism.
prompt #9: party.
What social gathering rocked your socks off in 2010? Describe the people, music, food, drink, clothes, shenanigans. –Shauna Reid
in 2009, it would’ve been the wilco concert on the maine state pier. what a night.
in 2010, what comes to mind is the girl’s fourth birthday party. four of her favorite pals came over to paint flower pots, play duck, duck, goose on the lawn and run around like a bunch of goofballs. i made a strawberry layer cake from scratch – strawberry by request from the birthday girl, from scratch by my own design. and when i stood on the back porch and yelled, “who wants birthday cake?” the kids let out a cheer and stampeded up to the back door, then tramped inside for cake and strawberry milk. a friend – the father of one of the guests – complimented me on what he described as an “old-fashioned” party. that hadn’t been my intention, but she loved it, and so did i.
prompt #11: 11 Things.
What are 11 things your life doesn’t need in 2011? How will you go about eliminating them? How will getting rid of these 11 things change your life? –Sam Davidson
- clothes that don’t fit
- furnishings that don’t add to our lives
- jobs i don’t want to do
prompt #12: Body integration.
This year, when did you feel the most integrated with your body? Did you have a moment where there wasn’t mind and body, but simply a cohesive YOU, alive and present? –Patrick Reynolds
yoga. today, at noon. i’ve been practicing three times a week lately, and i am getting stronger. i can feel it, i can see it and my practice is growing by leaps and bounds. 60 minutes flew by like a flash — it wasn’t until savasana, or corpse pose, at the end of the practice that my to-do lists came rushing back in.
tomorrow, at 9, i’ll be there again.
prompt #13: Action.
When it comes to aspirations, it’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen. What’s your next step? –Scott Belsky
my next step: not booking myself solid. leaving spaces in my schedule – both literally on my calendar and metaphorically, in my brain.
prompt #14: Appreciate.
What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it? –Victoria Klein
this is a fabulous question, with many possible answers — a sign of how fortunate i am, in this and all recent years. the answer that springs to mind is my amazing community of friends. mostly – but certainly not solely – women, many in their mid/late 30s/40s. they inspire me, challenge me, support me and occasionally feed me. i try to show my gratitude by doing the same right back to them. and, on occasion, i’ve been known to show up with some delicious pastries for nearby pals.
prompt #15: 5 minutes.
Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2010 in five minutes. Set an alarm for five minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2010. -Patti Digh
hiking mt. chocorua with my guy, then talking over nachos and beer
the way my girl lets me know she’s going to tell me something she’d like to keep private by saying, “let me secret it to you.”
laughing and crying over dinner in portland with two amazing friends on our annual girls’ weekend
sticking to the chairs in my dining room as a fabulous group of women played scrabble and scandalized the neighbors with our salty talk on one of the hottest nights of the year
my girl and her pal q holding hands and skipping ahead of all the parents on a daytrip to a sweet little new england amusement park
kudos from colleagues
walks on our local beach, laughing at the dogs and looking for shells
flying with the girl on a few days’ notice to see my ailing grandmother
wandering around the neighborhood, eating bagels and running into friends
snuggling up in our cozy little house, just as we did tonight: the guy reading, the girl chattering to herself as she plays with blocks on the floor, me sewing something for our house
prompt #16: Friendship.
How has a friend changed you or your perspective on the world this year? Was this change gradual, or a sudden burst? –Martha Mihalick
i thought *i* was a connector, someone who likes to introduce people to other people they might know and love. but this year i have had the glorious good fortune to deepen my relationship with someone i hope i know forever. she has had a rough go of it in the recent past, and despite, or perhaps because of, that, she pulls people together, plans outings, suggests a weekday lunch here, a crafternoon there. i can’t imagine my social (intellectual, musical, snarktastic) life without her and the friends i’ve made through her.
prompt #17: Lesson learned.
What was the best thing you learned about yourself this past year? And how will you apply that lesson going forward? –Tara Austen Weaver
oh, man. fatigue is setting in here. i am fricking lucky, ok? 2010 has been a fantastic year. i now fully realize that. for this question, though, i am interpreting “best” as “most useful.” and i have learned that when i am anxious about something, i create little fires for myself to put out. then i can make myself very busy putting out those fires and avoiding thinking about whatever it is that’s causing the anxiety. i am not the one who identified this pattern of coping… but i *have* been able to catch myself doing it… and then deal with, or at least acknowledge, the source of the anxiety. it’s pretty amazing, actually.
not re-reading, just hitting publish. phew.