Most people lament them, but not me. I look forward with an intensity that I hope never fades. Every day is beautiful even when you feel like there’s no place for beauty to be found. Cherish Monday. It’s always a new chance for you to be able to say “I’ll get it right this time,” or “that was the week I changed my life.” Give Monday a chance.
I have this wonderful app that I use for photo editing called A Color Story. When I’ve finished editing and want to decide what to do with the photo, it takes me to a page with a half dozen options, yet there’s a big black button at the bottom that reads “Start Again.” It reminds me of life (as most things do with me). When I’ve finished editing an image, I have the chance to do it again with a new one or remake the same one. If it doesn’t come out right, or if I want to see something different, I start again. If a decision doesn’t come out right, or if you want to see something different, then start again. I sometimes think that changing the image AGAIN can turn out to be a bad idea, but that’s a risk I know I’m going to have to take. I feel like being bold right now, brave. It’s a deviation from the norm, but the beauty of that is I have the option to start again if the picture in my head turns out to be different in real life.
Seems like they occur much too often. There are grating ones, the kind that not only stab you but twist the knife or put their thumbs in the wounds. Then there are the ones that don’t hurt as much because you already saw them coming from about twelve miles off. There are big, juicy ones like wet snowflakes that fall in successive waves over a crowd of onlookers, sure to humiliate you. Then there are the little ones, that might budge with a little persuasion. There are spiteful ones. Vengeful ones. Those betrayals that we couldn’t have seen with x-ray vision. There are the hushed whispers, more painful than ones shouted in faces. Those spoken in fear. Out of anger. Out of frustration. And those handed out at the end of one’s rope, spoken through clenched teeth demanding its own space or justice. There are no’s some days, but not a single one gets by where it doesn’t belong — whenever there comes a “yes.” And in my experience, dearies, no’s are a certainty, but yes’s are inevitable. Eventually.
I fractured my foot earlier this summer increasing my exercise level per my doctor’s orders. Seeing that broken bone on the X-ray was surreal. I’d never broken a bone before. Today as I was walking around, I realized I was afraid to start back exercising because what if I break my foot again? Alert: object lesson here. There are things we do in life where we get hurt or disappointed. We’re afraid to try them again because we think “what if I break that bone again?” Well, when a bone breaks it heals and the part that was broken is stronger than the original bone. This means that not only will your bone not likely break, it’ll withstand the amount of pressure you put on it now. We heal. Our bodies heal. Our hearts heal. Our souls heal. And we’re stronger because of it. We’re stronger in our places that were broken.
Give me an endless stream of music. An endless wall of paintings. A stunning array of ball gowns from a gala in Italy in 1959 or something Jackie wore that’s in an iconic photo. Shoes from 16th century China. A photograph taken at the precise right moment. Give me all of those things and then give me an empty canvas. A brush. Some paint. Let me make some art. The cycle continues. Unbroken. See the art. Create some art. Be the art. Just give it to me in all of its forms.
I discarded four bags of clothes I no longer wear and forgot I owned today thinking that would make my closet and room suddenly become uncluttered. It looks worse. Like a bomb inside of a tornado happened in my room. That’s the thing about purging: it takes time to rebuild what has been destroyed and discarded. It’s no different with life: it takes time to rebuild what has been destroyed and discarded. The old makes room for the new and the entire process will render everything changed and new. In the newness, something different must emerge, which is why growth is often a painful process. My room looks bad now so it can look differently, reflecting the change I’ve gone through. Gotta make space for the new.
I constantly find ways to do something else when I’m afraid to do something really big. I procrastinate or give myself reasons why I cannot move forward in this seemingly impossible task. The odds are against me, it would seem. And I become afraid. I’m never more creative than when I invent excuses not to do the things that scare me. As Amy Poehler put it: “the talking about the thing is not the doing of the thing. The doing of the thing is the doing of the thing.” So do it. Do it afraid. Invent reasons why you can and even if you’re lying to yourself, eventually you’ll believe it enough to do everything. Afraid or not.