Tuesday, January 10, 2017

If you're like most people, in January, you spend a lot of time contemplating changes.  You think about all the "new" a fresh year can bring you... we tend to call them New Years Resolutions. But for one reason or another I was acutely aware this year of the other end of that string - the goodbyes, the cutting, the tying up of the old and bidding things adieu.  You can't have one without the other.  I think that is my wish for you all this year - that you find the strength to say goodbye to all the extras that have accumulated to slow you down and wear you out... be it a bad habit, a bad relationship, a bad thought, or even all the good that has become the antagonist of the unknown great of which you dream or wonder.  Please, use the wonderful happiness of a fresh start that a new year can offer, to do the hard work of saying goodbye and ending something. 

Creating a new habit does take decision after decision, but ending a habit or relationship is done in a moment (and then you just have to stick to it!).  It is over starting the first time you don't go back to it. I think that's really the power of the new year.  It's that an old one has closed, and you can't go back to it.  You get to decide what to leave back there.  

And with goodbye comes new energy, time, space.... everything a new beginning requires.  Suddenly, the future looks bright, with all of its unknowns and wonder. 

I'm being equally intentional about my firsts this year.  This is my first use of my revamped laptop. John installed a new RAM and a solid-state hard drive so I can seriously start working on my consulting business.  When he left for work this morning, I reached for my "new" laptop - opened chrome - typed in Facebook - and thank God it asked me for my sign-in credentials.  That flicker was just enough time for an intentional thought to over-ride the frightening thoughtless habit of my fingers to open that blue page! I thought, "This is my first act here in this all new space - what do I want it to be?"  I came here. 

Similarly, I've had my eye on a dreamy Waterman fountain pen for most of the last 6 months.  When John surprised me with it for my 30th birthday last week I took time to consider what my first act with it should be - I had pulled out a sheet of paper to write a to-do list and was of course going to use my new pen to outline it.  Is that really what this fountain pen is for?  Is that what my 30's are for?  What I'm for?  No.  I wrote a three sentence love letter.  Then, I wrote a to-do list.  (I really do like to-do lists.)  The acts are small, but with each first, I set a direction, a priority.  I set it.  

In short - let's say goodbye. And then let's take advantage of each opportunity we have to make a new 'first step' - allowing ourselves to intentionally chart our first moves, even if we can't plan out or control our whole coming year.  

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

I have some friends that hate when people hide things.  And I not only understand that, but I love that they feel that way.  I love that they are so passionate about people being open and honest and real that they'd much rather hear bad news than see a smiling, dishonest face.

I've got to say, I'm not one of those people.  I feel very strongly about being who you really are, being honest and sincere.  But I feel equally strongly that your core does not belong to them. You do not belong to them.  You belong to few.  You belong to one. You belong to you. You belong to who you choose to share you with... and that is wildly beautiful to me.  I like looking at a person I know somewhat, and knowing they are concealing things from me - beautiful things, sincere things, their things.  I admire those people.

It makes it that much more wonderful when one of your few share one of those concealed pieces with you - maybe it's only for a moment, a timely secret, painful or happy, or maybe it's forever, a piece of them.

My world has grown so much smaller in the past few years.  Less ears, less voices.  In my old world, we used to always have to tell everything, to almost everyone, and everyone else would tell the rest anyways.  Talking.  Telling.  Sharing.  So little keeping.

I love the keeping.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

I turn 30 in a couple months.  And I have a lot of time to think about it right now, which I think is good.  I haven't had a lot of "thinking" time over the past 10ish years, you know, time to just uncomfortably sit in myself so to speak.  So we've been doing that, we've been thinking and feeling.  We've been looking at situations from an older, different angle and we've been giving ourself room to feel things - feel wronged and feel wrong.  Feel happy, feel powerful, capable, pretty or not pretty. Feel shame. Feel injustice. All the feels. (All the royal we's as well.)

Lately I've been sitting with a big ? - like a REALLY big question mark.  I'm pretty tired of most everything there is to see, do, consume on a daily basis.  Yesterday I scrolled through the "explore" section of Instagram, looking for something refreshing - something that isn't puppies (I have a lot of those on my feed!), pretty moms in very gradient-colored homes with children dressed in fancy linen onesies (I follow a lot of those), house plants, white subway tile... I genuinely like all of these things, but I'm just sort of...full.  I need something refreshing, like sorbet to my Instagram, and my Facebook, and my days!

I'm a writer, but I don't want to write more of all the same. I don't want to start a blog on tiny homes or being a puppy mom or a newly wed.  So, the question mark.... and the looking, or waiting, and sitting.

We take a lot of walks when it's not pouring rain (the pup and me, not the royal we), and I've been reading. We've done some house projects.  We clean.  We think about how we are two months away from 30 - and we don't want to waste our life.  Nor this season of life where I get to course correct - where I get to catch up - where I can move nearly any direction I want to go! It's a good life.  And I don't want to be a consumer - so I try to buy less, shop less, try to not fill my time with pastimes that require purchases.  Because purchases are not progress.

30 in a couple months... and here's what I know that I didn't know ten years ago, or even five. You're stuck with you.  You aren't stuck with anyone or anything else. Relationships are a gift we hope and pray we are blessed to keep, but deep down you only have so much control of that. When you have a spouse, care for them like hell, but while you're waiting you should know - you're still always going to be with you. When you're 20, 30 or 90. Somehow, being married, I feel like the "me" is even harder to ignore in the room now than when I was single.  And I love that I have a husband that fully supported my goal for this year to be a healthier me - mentally, physically and spiritually. So two months left - we've made some progress, we have more to make... and we have a big question mark as to what this healthier, truer me is really all about - how she spends her time and what inspires and refreshes her and what valuable contribution she holds the capacity to give this world.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Last night I dreamt that our airbnb guests showed up a day early to just "check out" the place - the whole family trotted into the yard, across the patio and began heading into the house! I had to explain to them that that is NOT how this works.

Then I started debating if it was an honest mistake, or if they were sizing up my house!  Kids in tow!

We might spend a bit too much time on airbnb. ;)


Tuesday, August 09, 2016

I quit my job.

Most of you probably know that/have figured it out by now.

Here's what I don't know -

Have I quit the industry?
Have I quit 'my career'?
What is next?

People are asking what the plan is - what's next? And I want to jump in and say "Build my own business.  Offer communications and marketing support for small businesses I believe in."  But, that's not what today is about.  Today is a crazy gift where I get to let go of all pressure, direction, preconceived ideas, and experience - and reconsider... who am I? What am I good at? And more importantly - What do I believe matters? What makes me happy? What thing ADDS to me when I give it?

So, while a definite piece to me thinks - this business is "next" - and truth be told, it has a name and a url and an unpublished website... I'm letting it float out there, because it may not be what's next.

I don't know what is next. 

I know I've always loved to write.  I'm going to figure out if I still love it. 

I know I am a romantic - and I know I need to find a way to FEEL the romance in life and business all over again. I know I care more about doing than saying (a true problem for a "writer" - and something I'll have to tease out).  I know I cry when I listen to the symphony.  I love the taste and ceremony of a good glass of wine.  I love the heart of cooking a meal for people I love - but hate the pressure of preparing something people can rate/compare/time.  My dinners will be hours late. Plan on it.  They will almost always be something new.  They might actually not taste good.  I love the stars.  I love fires. I loves stories. I love feeling deep and close to another human being.  I love the magical moment when you realize you have found a new place in this world where you are safe.

I know these things, but beyond that, I really don't know much.  And right now, I get to step back and try to discover new things I know. 

I am one lucky woman.  I happen to have a man beside me who is better at letting people "not know" than anyone else I've ever met. 

Monday, July 25, 2016

I have been counting down the days until the end, then resetting and counting down again for so many months now it's hard to believe it's really the LAST WEEK!

We're not quite sure what's next and that is a bit unnerving, but it doesn't touch how exciting it is to be saying goodbye to something that just didn't feel right. We're doing our best to hold on to the unknown and not to fill the spaces immediately... the goal is to leave room and discover along the way.

Come Friday, I'll be spending time with my ENTIRE family, celebrating my parents' retirement and swimming in my own new freedom to create/work/dream/garden/write/cook away!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

New Things

As we live more of our days out in the same fashion, the same rhythm, the same pattern - it becomes increasingly harder to deviate. Doesn't it?

Saying yes was once so easy - yes to hikes, drives, cliffs, unknowns. But the older we become the less we say yes.  Now I'm not sure if that's because we have less time or more responsibilities or if it's as I assume, merely we're out of the habit, but it's a widely accepted fact that the older we become the more risk-adverse we become in our choices and behaviors. 

Can I just remind you all - trying something new is so damn refreshing? 

It's scary and it will likely reacquaint you with what it feels like to be bad at something. But that's okay, because it's your first time!  And how glorious is it to remember what a "first time" feels like?  So maybe today, try something new.  Eat a food you might not like.  Read a book in a genre you've never touched.  Take a drive, schedule a class, buy some paintbrushes or sit outside a coffee shop and talk to someone who looks totally different from you - ask them something about themselves.  Maybe join a group, join a march, I'd say join a conversation - but for most of us, I think we talk plenty - what we need is to do something, do something completely new.  Something fun!  Something scary!  Something that reminds us we are still explorers.  And that we might not yet know ourselves as well as we thought.  We may have in fact changed into someone new in all those years we've spent living out a life of rhythm and pattern.