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Posts Tagged ‘reverb10’

December 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?

I’m behind in my Reverb1o postings. Some of them are just too difficult to answer so I pass. This one is tough, but let’s see what happens.

I can think of so many things my life needs, but needs to get rid of? Would that be the opposite of the first, what I need?

1. I need more friends, so I need to get rid of loneliness.

2. I need to make more money, so I need to get rid of the belief that I can’t make more doing what I love.

3. I need more in-breaths, more air, so I need to get rid of my fear of going to yoga. Ironic, I know.

4. I need more patience for art, crafts, tasks I used to love, so I need to get rid of my rollercoaster mind, one that never stop, or slows down. I loathe to say the word meditation, as the thought of sitting that still makes my skin crawl, but that thought showed up for a reason.

5. I need more life in my life, so I need to get rid of the ghosts that haunt me about being safe in the world. I was once so brave, so fearless out there.

6. I need more laughter in my life, so I need to get rid of some sorrow. So much letting go to be done–or pushing ahead.

7. I need more love in my life, so I need to get rid of my story about myself that keeps me from going out there and dating. I am not broken. I just am. So is everyone else. Repeat this to myself often.

8. I need more personal compassion in my life, so I need to get rid of believing I am not wanted, loved, cared for, needed. It’s possible I might be.

9. I need more calm in my life, so I need to get rid of anxiety and panic. The word yoga and meditation keep popping up and I keep pushing them back down. Who will win?

10. I need many things I don’t always want to work for. How do I balance out that tug-of-war? What do I get rid of to learn to be involved in a community without feeling overwhelmed and burdened by it? What do I get rid of? My prompensitiy for quiet, solitude, wide open spaces? No thank you. Because number 11 is:

11. I need more quiet mind, inner peace, time in nature and wide open spaces. What do I get rid of for that if I don’t want to pack up and move back to the mountains? Live in my jeep again. I’ve grown rather found of a bathtub & kitchen. I need to get rid of that all-or-nothing idea, learn to live in-between, in peace, in calm, over and over and over.

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Reverb10, day 7:

Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011?

Tough word: community. You are either in or you are out, there’s no in-between. All that togetherness and pressure to fit in can shake me up. I am not good with crowds, have never managed to successfully engage at, and enjoy, a cocktail party. I can do it, but it takes a ridiculous amount of energy, an emergency escape plan and sometimes a little Xanax.

And then I discovered Twitter.  No unnerving mixed signals, no weird eye-contact-not-equaling-emotional-vibe, no loud crowds or hooting inside joke laughter, no personal questions out of left field, “So D, WHY aren’t you married?” (Engage exit strategy, now).

On-line, no one cares what I do for a living, or where I work, or where I  bought this blouse , or what my hair looks like today, unless, it’s particularly good, or bad,  and I post a photo of it to share.

It’s kind of like show-and-tell for grown ups. Or a gaggle of girlfriends gabbing at the kitchen counter. It’s a  fairytale I’d like to have in real life but haven’t quite  found, like Prince Charming or a Desperate Housewife. It looks romantic, or tight-knit,  but does it exist?

Twitters authenticity is questionable.  Would any of these people  like me in real life–or me, them? I don’t know. We are putting our best rehearsed selves out there– or our worst selves, or our most outrageous selves. It isn’t who I am in public, or maybe it is if I were braver, if I had a posse, a pack, a tribe.

I certainly talk about them enough:

Tony in Pacifica, runs a bait shop, said the funniest thing the other day…

Madeline, in Idaho, a mom of FOUR, got caught without diapers last week. We all suggested she pour herself a drink and we laughed with her until she stopped crying. She’s amazing…

Cheryl’s husband is in Iraq. Julia bought the most beautiful vintage dress. Martha lost her job. Matt wrote his first play…

My friend says, “but you don’t KNOW these people”, and I disagree. We share a lot more here than we do at cocktail parties. They know more about me than you do…

They are my treasure box of  epistolary frienships, the gab without the kitchen. We just makeshift with virtual cocktails, emoticons and TwitPics.

What do I want in community for 2011? An iPhone, so I can take them all with me when I leave the house.

d xo

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The question is: How do I cultivate a sense of wonder in my life?

I pay attention.

I have been conciously practicing this ever since my dog, Shadow, was diagnosed with bone cancer. He only lived for two more months, so I took each moment I could to be present with him to appreciate him.

These are some of the moments we had together:

He couldn’t walk far so I put both dogs in the car, rolled down the windows and drove slowly through the neighborhood, winding in and out of streets, watching Shadow lean his head out the window, close his eyes, and breathe in. He was beautiful.

I drove through McDonald’s and ordered 3 vanilla swirly cones, threw one in the back seat for Zephyr and let Shadow lick his off the cone. We did this nearly every day. I laughed, when I didn’t think I could anymore.

I traced his body with my fingers and wrote down each curve, color and texture of his fur. I memorized his ears, his eyes, his feet, his tail and I wrote it all down. He is with me, always.

Now, I take Zephyr, my shepherd and we walk, a lot. I don’t wear headphones, or carry a phone. There is no music or distractions. We are walking and listening and seeing the trees, the sky, the clouds. I notice things. I pay attention. I watch Zephyr, how he moves, what he does. I listen. There is a lot to hear and see when we walk alone. 

d.

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There was a time when I wanted to be a writer. There was a time when I was a writer–and a time when I was an “essayist”, then a journalist, then an editor, then a writer of articles and even an  investigative reporter. Now, I am none of these.

On a whim I joined this Reverb10 assignment to “create” something for each day of December, but already it feels like a writing competition for real writers and I don’t know what that  means anymore, really, other than something people flaunt about at cocktail parties, and I don’t want to have anything to do with it.

The truth is I want to be nearly anything but a real writer. I can’t take the criticism, the hostility, the backlash. I just don’t have the skin for it anymore. Too jumpy, too easy to crumble, to scared, really. It takes a boat load of courage to be a writer, out there, out-of-the-closet, sans aka or nom de plume. It’s just gotten me in too much trouble.

I can write fluff. I’m really good at that–cosmetic reviews, paid ad pieces, interviews with the real estate guy, the Nutrisystem gal, Christmas “What to Buy Your Sweetheart”, runway reviews, what’s new in Feng Shui? Not a problem. Cake walk. I can do it in my sleep.

Fluff, however, does not  fill that need, that artist thing, that I can never clearly name without sounding like a snotty bitch. It doesn’t shine the light–not on me, but inside me, and that, more than any other place is where a real writer needs to go and I just don’t know for sure if  I can go there anymore. It’s a pretty fucking frightening place to go.

 So, for now, I am going to wade around in the shallow end of this Reverb10 assignment and see if it draws anything from me, for me, to keep me pushing deeper into a place I can still stand, without drowning.

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Yesterday, out of nowhere I signed up for the Reverb 10 challenge to create a piece or art, writing, post, anything creative for every day of December.

I nearly drowned on the first question: Sum up this last year in one word. A flood of sad words landed on the paper, before I chose the word: PRIVATE, because I really didn’t want to share. I didn’t want anyone to see me that sad, that broken. Last night was long and I got really depressed. I gave those words life by writing them down. They suddenly owned me.

This morning was gray. I might have stayed in bed all day, but I started searching for replacement words, other possibilities, other ways out and this is what happened:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ew9Tx5fOrlU

If it wasn’t a good day, mulch it. 🙂

d. xxoo

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