One of my writing goals for 2018 was to take writing classes again, whether it be a one-day workshop or a 6-week course. I almost didn’t start the year with a class but decided at the last minute that it should be a priority right at the beginning of the year. What makes it even more special is that it is Life in 10 Minutes again. I took a couple of sessions last year. It was my first writing class outside of school. I remember feeling so shy and unsure of myself. At the time, I was also in the throes of deciding whether or not I wanted to continue with graduate school (currently thanking God I made the right choice not to do so). This class did two things for me: It made me take a hard look at what I really wanted for my future AND it confused me.
Why the confusion one may ask?
After cracking my shell open and reading words aloud I wouldn’t have dared just a few months before, I thought it was time to decide what kind of writer I wanted to be. It seems silly now. But I thought I was this woman trying to finish a novel and anything else was superfluous. I had to confront all of the many colors, shades and textures of who I am as a writer.
I have just come back from the first session tonight. Even with all of the new faces and voices, the feeling is the same. We read our confessions, our musings, our wishes, our regrets, our stories, our characters out loud in communion with one another. We share our art. We share our lives.
Today, we came back from visiting family. After breakfast and gift opening yesterday morning, my parents set off for Texas. Neither of them have ever spent any real time there so they decided to try something new. Hubby and I are the same way. I realize I get that quality from them. Since they have been empty-nesters, I’ve observed them enjoying their life together by taking trips, running races and going to festivals and conferences.
Partly because of their example, it will always sadden me when I hear someone say.. “I’m too old for this.. or I should have done (fill in the blank) when I was younger and now it’s too late.” As long as you have breath in your body, it’s not over. I’m not saying anyone I know lives up to this perfectly but I have been inspired to live this way, even when I have moments when I am full of doubt and fear.
And when those moments come, these questions must be considered: What if the experience presented to you was just for you right at this time? What if you never have the opportunity again?
As we are all aware, tomorrow is promised to no one. So why not now? Book that trip, start that business or blog, write that book or try that new restaurant. Sometimes (and I have been guilty of this as well), it feels like we are just waiting until the next time we choose to put it off. It’s as if we are waiting just to kick the can down the road again so to speak.
I am excited for 2018. Not because I can’t wait to see what happens but I want to see how I make it happen. And that starts now–no waiting for an arbitrary date, no cans to kick down the road.
I started my day off at the doctor’s office for my follow-up appointment. I got the best news possible. I am getting better, no X-rays needed and my blood pressure completely normalized. As I was waiting for the doctor to come back with my blood test results, the difference of how I was feeling this morning compared to Tuesday afternoon washed over me. There was not a struggle for my next breath and it didn’t take effort to keep my eyes open. Over the last few days, I’ve reflected on how much I take for granted, even the ability to breathe easily. This 21-Day challenge has forced me to be mindful of how I go about my day, all of the little decisions. Being ill has made me mindful that even my next breath is not guaranteed. I don’t think I will ever forget it.
With only a few days left, I will resume light physical activity, continue drinking water and write every day. Thoughts of what will come next have already come knocking on this brain of mine. I have some ideas that need to be fleshed out but I know consistency has made a home here.
Ok-off to chug this water and enjoy my Friday night!