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Entries in one little word (2)

Tuesday
Jan082013

The Word: A Story

I pull the wool cap down over my ears and knot the scarf.  Swallow the lump in my throat, jam my hands deep into my pockets and step out into the searing blue sun of a late winter afternoon.  It is time, finally, to be honest with each other, something I don't always believe in, the truth being so slippery and easily obscured by obstacles in our own hearts and minds.  It is hard to see things as they really are and to name them correctly in the moment.  It is hard to hear each other well.

I let this wash over me, stinging my skin like ice crystals: You didn't do it right.

Draw back the arrow and release: Why did you change?

Frozen ground crunches under our feet and there is one truth I believe as it swims up in front of my teary eyes: you are you and I am me, and there is no talking either of us out of that.  I can see my breath.  I see our story stretched out on a gossamer thread, behind us and before us.  Every story has a beginning, a middle, and an end.  This is only the middle, I see. 

So we do this:  accept, and keep creating our story.

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This is the word that keeps coming up for me, as I contemplate what to set as intention and guide for 2013:

story

This is a year to own my own story, and to receive others' stories in nuance, acceptance and fullness.  It is a time to study the elements of story and to improve my facility with them.  I aspire to strengthen my storytelling both in my professional life and here, in my personal work.  I will return to my reading life, my bedside table stacked high with books waiting to be loved.  I will write and shoot in an effort to illuminate the threads that hold us together. 

I am afraid to make any claims about honesty but I believe there's truth in the story, and I hope that will guide me through the coming year.

Sunday
Jan012012

One Little Word

A small gift from Etsy's Angel Funk, which immediately seemed like the totem I need this year. How did she know?Is it true that one little word can change my life in the coming year?  I was introduced to the practice of choosing one word for the year through the creative community I found in 2011.  One word to point myself toward.  One word to meditate on, bounce off, spin around.  One word to be my Polaris, the intention around and through which I navigate 2012.  People I know or read have chosen words like inspire, create, witness, surrender, thrive.  I thought about what I want the theme of my next year to be, what feels vital, positive, and active.  I chose

cultivate

(by which I mean)

nurture the conditions for the emergence of transformative growth

I think my work for the year is about learning to value the practice and the process more than the product.  About nurturing relationships, carving out both physical and emotional space to be inspired and to work.  About preparing the soil and trusting that there will be a satisfying harvest in the correct season.

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I look forward to sharing this journey here this year and hearing about yours. Did you choose a word?  What is it?  Why?

I send the dear community that gathers here my best wishes for an inspired 2012, full of delight.  Happy New Year!