Thursday, December 26, 2013

Daily {Breathe}

The presents are unwrapped; there is a garbage bag full of their outer layers leaned up against my front door waiting for someone to take it out to the curb.  Most of the high calorie food has been consumed, except the plate that now holds the straggling cookies and sings its siren's song of temptation to each hand and mouth that passes it.  When the light of the new day dawns, Christmas will be over and we will begin to look toward the next round of merriment...and into the vast, blank expanse of the new year.

A new year.  It is a white piece of paper surrounded by sharpies.  The artist knows she has to draw, but where to begin?  For once we put the color to the paper, there is no turning back.  We must continue to add new lines, words, embellishments, and turn the mistakes into creative little pictures to blend with the whole.

What will we write?  Who will co-author with us?  What colors will we choose?  What words will be prominent?  Which ones diminished?  These are the questions...nay, the opportunity...we have each day of a new year.  But they are difficult to see in the fast paced flurry of the moment and much easier to surmise from the distance between now and the start time.  We are given a gift in this in-between time.  The gift of breathing room.  The gift of perspective.  The gift of intention.

I always try to have a word for the start of the year, thus I am pondering....What do I want this next year to be like?  I think for me, I want to keep in view both the vision this time affords us of the whole (of the desired future), but also of the daily.  It is that word "daily" that I think will be the word for this year.

It is the daily action of intentional writing on the paper that germinates the whole.  Daily precision or daily sloppiness become my options.  Daily acts of kindness toward those I live with, daily moments of self-care, daily eating, daily exercise, daily thought life, daily friendships.  Thoughtless or careless pen strokes on a daily basis can make the difference between joy and sadness a year from now.  It can make the difference between joy and sadness every day too. 

When I was a child, I scribbled like a child.  I don't want that to be the picture I end up with. Like when my hands had to learn cursive writing in third grade, the work may at times be slow and tedious, but with daily practice, the new habit can be learned...and learned so well that I can't remember not ever being able to do it!   It is easy for me to be aspirational or wishful, but in order to be intentional.... well, for me, that takes the word "daily".

Daily, daily, daily, I have the choice to write on this next year's blank piece of paper.
What will I choose to write?

Do you have a word for the year?  I'd love to hear it..and maybe a little story behind it too.

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