I am a quiet girl, prone to moving through life at a turtle’s pace and to doing things at small, detailed levels. I am not one for making big splashes, yet I know I can have profound effects. Nevertheless, when I look back at my life, sometimes I feel like I haven’t done much; the tracks I leave tend to be humble, not monumental, and it can be difficult for me to see that I’ve “made something” of my life.
From where I sit today I know that this past year has been monumental, I can feel it. To give myself a tangible sense of this, I made a list (’cause that’s how I roll).
In the year twenty-ten:
I swam with turtles in the Caribbean and with sturgeon in the Puget Sound. I stood on a cliff and watched a pod of seals frolic. I stood on a riverbank and gazed enraptured while fledgling eagles squealed through their first solo soaring.
I found bald eagle and red-tailed hawk feathers, and marveled at mountain bluebirds and merlins. I lingered with a village of hermit crabs; they were magic and freaky at the same time.
I found a wee, pink orchid on a remote hillside, where pirates had walked centuries before. And at a roadside stand I bought beautiful rattles made from “garbage” by a man with a lovely voice and knowing eyes.
I drove through miles and miles of wheat farms, top down on my yellow car and my farm-girl DNA all a-ga-ga. I rode small ferry boats across a river, a lake, and a sea. I lingered with many a sunrise, sunset, and the Milky Way. I saw shooting stars, and watched fireworks.
I tickled my circus bone, at Teatro ZinZanni, Ricochet, Libertease, Can Can, Columbia City Cabaret, Moisture Festival, Circus Contraption, and twice at Cirque du Soleil’s KOOZAâ€”where the King of Clowns hit me over the noggin with a Porterhouse steak and confetti sailed out of a cannon and into my cleavage.
I learned how to do my make-up as if I were a burlesque performer, and I wore 3D glasses at the midnight opening of Alice in Wonderland.
With the love and kindnesses of friends and family, I survived a divorce (there was a lovely, laughter- and tear-filled party at my new apartment the night-of), and with the brute power of my friends and family, seven months later I packed up all my west-coast belongings and moved 300 miles east.
I built a website for a poet, because I love his voice, and I nudged a shamen through publishing a daring book. I (finally!) opened my Etsy shopâ€”and actually (finally!) sold some of the vintage things I’ve accumulated.
I made new friends, and expanded existing friendships. I could have been a better friend, but I’m pretty sure everyone still loves me nevertheless. And I’m okay with that.
I did not send out my annual Valentine, and I regret that, but February 14 was only a month after my divorce was finalized, so I was not feeling much Cupid in my heart. (I am looking forward to rectifying this in 2011.)
I took good care of my bodyâ€”celebrating one year of sobriety, losing twenty pounds, and indulging in Pilates. I got pretty descent at feeding myself, even though I abhor doing so.
A priest and I collaborated on a sexy little art project. And in an interesting turn of events, I crafted my first art installation, which hung at a major art festival. There were also many art dates with dear friends and these included glitter, gossip, and giggles.
There was much!!! sand between my toesâ€“from several different beachesâ€“and lingering poolside in Ballard plus skinny dipping in a pool in Los Angeles.
I invented a new sportâ€”the S’mores Offâ€”and I did not win this roasted marshmallow competition, but I launched much laughter and learned ways to refine my roasting technique. PUFFY.
I did many things that were uncomfortable, practicing spontaneity and no-fear; I believe I am better off for doing so.
I have also been dabbling in vulnerability, and I am grateful to know that there are openings in the walls I built around my heart. Not many of them, and not large openings, but after the way I began this year in a complete upheavel of my life, even the wee, smallest openings to my heart are precious.
Thank you all for riding along with me. I really would not have made it without you.