2012

Ocean

Recently, I posted Marilyn’s New Year’s Resolutions for 1956. While looking at her list, I was reminded of the aspirations I made for 2012. I realize now that it really takes time (and maybe I am an extra slow mover) to do things. When I told my meditation instructor about my aspirations for 2012 at the start of the year, she said “Maybe you should pick one”. I looked at her crestfallen and set out to prove her wrong with all my accomplishing.

In January of 2012, I created a list of goals that looked like this:
(I decided to take it easy on myself by aspiring to first drafts instead of final products)

1. Create first draft of four rooms.
2. Write first draft of children’s book
3. Write business proposal for Red Bowl (a take-out alternative)
4. Go on retreat
5. Do a free-standing handstand in yoga class
6. Go to India
7. Visit Family
8. Write rough draft of short story
9. Write a song for Ella
10. Hold a porch dinner party
11. Submit a post to Tiny Buddha
12. Finish Painting
13. Get CA drivers license
14. Change last name
15. Ride a bike

Here’s what I did:
1. Create first draft of four rooms.
4. Go on retreat
7. Visit Family
13. Get CA drivers license
14. Change last name
15. Ride a bike

And I am so grateful that I was able to do those six things.

I was not able to bust into the scene of creative writing handstanders, but I spent beautiful time with my family and said a tender sad goodbye to my father. I rode a bike through a rainstorm on retreat in Arizona and I started writing this blog. Now in 2013, I am realizing that for the first time in many years I might not make a list of goals. I think I am ok to keep doing what I am doing. I was talking with my friend Alicia today about how revolutionary it is to be content with what is happening, not trying to be somewhere else. At the same time, I am grateful for the January 2012 Alice who inspired to so many things. It seems I can’t experience one without the other…the trying or the letting go.

I heard Pema Chodron share this Hopi prophecy at a retreat a few years ago.

Here is a river, flowing now very fast.
It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid;
willing to cling to the shore.
They are being torn apart and will suffer greatly.
Know, that the river has its destination.
The elders say, ‘Let go of the shore.
Push our way into the middle and keep our heads above water.’
They also say, ‘See who is there with you and celebrate.’
At this time in history, the time of the lone wolf is over.
Gather yourselves.
Banish the word struggle from your vocabulary.
All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration;
for we are the ones we have been waiting for.

Lastly, I want to share gratitude for the people who shared their hearts with me this year. Thank you to my family, friends and teachers for being fellows on the journey. Thank you to those who call out and those who answer.

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