30-Day Letter Project: 19

I hurt you. Repeatedly, over and over again, I hurt you. I have hurt you, I continue to hurt you.

And still, there you are. Trying to be there for me, really be there for me… and I won’t let you. Not really. And I don’t get it! Don’t get me wrong, I love it. I love knowing you’re there…

But I don’t get it. And I wonder how long it will last, because I know I’m distant. I know I’m not letting you in, and I know that’s not easy for you.

Truth be told? If I were you, I’d be long gone by now.

Photo: esc.ape(d)

{Day 19: Someone that pesters your mind (good or bad)}

There’s, clearly, more to it than just this: Reverb10.23-10.29

In an attempt to travel further down the path of self-discovery, I’ve decided to participate in Reverb 10, which is an annual event and online initiative to reflect on your year and manifest what’s next.

December 23: New name

Let’s meet again, for the first time. If you could introduce yourself to strangers by another name for just one day, what would it be and why?

I wouldn’t change a single thing about my name – first, last or middle.

December 24: Everything’s OK

What was the best moment that could serve as proof that everything is going to be alright? And how will you incorporate that discovery into the year ahead?

There was one moment this fall, when my life started to fall apart bit by bit, when a coworker looked me straight in the eye and said, “You’ll be fine.”

No profound words, no deeper meaning. But this one little phrase, coming from her – a smart, truly SMART woman – meant the world.

December 25: Photo – a present to yourself

Sift through all the photos of you from the past year. Choose one that best captures you; either who you are, or who you strive to be. Find the shot of you that is worth a thousand words. Share the image, who shot it, where, and what it best reveals about you.

This is who I am – an aunt to two beautiful twin girls. K and S are the lights of my life.

This is who I want to be – a positive role model for these girls.

I took this photo of my nieces and I in July 2010. It may not be the best photo of the girls (or myself), but you try getting a good self-portrait of you with two 2-and-a-half-year-olds! This photo melts my heart. This is who I am and who I want to be – and who I need to remember as I make life decisions.

December 26: Soul food

What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth & touched your soul?

Maybe it’s a good thing I delayed writing this, because I just got back from a trip to Leavenworth, and let me tell you – everything I ate there touched my soul. I had a delicious brat at Munchen Haus and amazing shrimp cooked in tequila at Katz Chop House, among lots and lots of other food (pretty sure I gained about 10 pounds in my two days there).

I think the brat, though – the whole experience, really – was the best. It was something I craved for days before I arrived in Leavenworth, and am still craving even now. YUM.

December 27: Ordinary joy

Our most profound joy is often experienced during ordinary moments. What was one of your most joyful ordinary moments this year?

I remember, after buying the house in March, going to Lowe’s to look for a washer and dryer. Nothing exciting, just a new laundry set. Though not cheap, I think of that as a pretty ordinary thing… and I was really, really happy doing it.

December 28: Achieve

What’s the thing you most want to achieve next year? How do you imagine you’ll feel when you get it? Free? Happy? Complete? Blissful? Write that feeling down. Then, brainstorm 10 things you can do, or 10 new thoughts you can think, in order to experience that feeling today.

The thing I most want to achieve in 2011 isn’t an actual act. The thing I most want to achieve is a feeling, an emotion, a state of mind. I want to achieve clarity, and peace of mind. And, really, that’s such an urgent thing that if I knew 10 things I could do, right now, to achieve that… well, I’d do it.

December 29: Defining moment

Describe a defining moment or series of events that has affected your life this year.

This one is too personal, too painful to post here. But rest assured, there was a defining moment, a defining series of events, that drastically changed my life and is continuing to change my life to this exact moment. And no, it wasn’t (isn’t) pretty.

Future self & travel: Reverb10.21-10.22

In an attempt to travel further down the path of self-discovery, I’ve decided to participate in Reverb 10, which is an annual event and online initiative to reflect on your year and manifest what’s next.

December 21: Future self

Imagine yourself five years from now. What advice would you give your current self for the year ahead? (Bonus: Write a note to yourself 10 years ago. What would you tell your younger self?)

Hey, you.

Take your time.


For the love of all that is good in this world, live for you.

I know you care. Sometimes, too much. (It really is a curse sometimes, isn’t it?) The truth is, it’s pretty obvious to most people that you care. I’m not entirely sure you could do anything to make people think you don’t care. So please, if even just for one stinkin’ day, live for you.

And don’t forget to breathe!

And… also, next time someone suggests shots at the bar? Say yes, just once. You could use something other than Coors Light running through your veins.

LOVE, me.

December 22: Travel

How did you travel in 2010? How and/or where would you like to travel next year?

Y’all? I didn’t GO ANYWHERE this year. A few (and a LOT too few) trips to see my nieces, a couple trips to some surrounding larger towns and one trip to “Seattle” (but not really Seattle – mostly just IKEA).

That’s it. No return trips to Pullman. No flying to San Francisco.

But that’s going to change. In 2011, I’m going to SF. (Lauren, watch out, I’m lookin’ at you!) In 2011, I’m going to Vegas. I’m going to see my nieces more, to visit my amazing siblings and to the Oregon coast.

I’m going to get the hell out of this house.

Photo: Lara

Infinite: Reverb10.18-10.20

In an attempt to travel further down the path of self-discovery, I’ve decided to participate in Reverb 10, which is an annual event and online initiative to reflect on your year and manifest what’s next.

December 18: Try

What do you want to try next year? Is there something you wanted to try in 2010? What happened when you did / didn’t go for it?

I want to try to be happy. I know that I took some pretty significant steps toward that in 2010 (new job, buying a house) but there was so much in 2010 that was about settling. At some point I stopped going for more and just sort of… got used to what I had. I never want to stop looking for more, stop yearning for more, stop wanting more again.

December 19: Healing

What healed you this year? Was it sudden, or a drip-by-drip evolution? How would you like to be healed in 2011?

Nothing, aside from a shot of penicillin in the ass (quite figuratively, actually – gotta love getting strep throat), healed me this year. I’ve touched on this a little here lately, but in terms of sickness/illness, 2010 was more a year for getting sick than for healing. In 2011, though, I would really like ME to heal me. Not suddenly, because I don’t think I’ll learn as much from it. But I want to heal, step by step, one little bit at a time until I’m whole, until I’m well again.

December 20: Beyond avoidance

What should you have done this year but didn’t because you were too scared, worried, unsure, busy or otherwise deterred from doing? (Bonus: Will you do it?)

I should have stood up for myself, said the right things and done the right things, instead of running scared.

One can only hope I’ll do that in 2011.

Photo: watch me love