Are We There Yet?

you know what i wanna talk about today? progress. oh i’m sorry, did you split your lip on your teacup as you fell asleep at the mere mention of the word?

we want to be good at everything we touch, and quickly. but here is what i know 7 years into marriage, 5 years into kids (i am counting pregnancy because well, if you would have been there, you would have counted it) and 35 years into life. skillz take time and work and sacrifice.

i love art, music- oh, music! do not even get me started with the joys and the heartbreaks that can come within a single song! And i enjoy making something out of nothing! ohhhh weeeee hand me a ball of yarn, two pieces of wood and a pipe cleaner and leave me alone for an hour and see what happens. anyway, i live boldly- i wear bold colors. i talk too much and sometimes too loudly. but you know what? i want to experience life and life to the full. i become more and more convinced with every passing year that it is far better to shake it when the zumba instructor said SHAKE YOUR BOOTY!!! even if you do happen to fall over onto the elderly woman wearing keds beside you, rather than to avoid it at the risk of looking silly. here’s what is silly- living small and having regrets.

you know why chick flicks are soooooo freaking appealing? because they risk it all for love. they run through the field. they swim across the lake. they interrupt the wedding and it all turns out in the end. credits roll before you see a hint of it not ending in 100% bliss, but here’s what i know now. the risk is part of the learning. when i was a kid i would ask my mother to buy stuff. by “stuff” i mean every stuffed animal i ever saw. many times she would say we didn’t need it, but many other times she would say sure… i’ll pay half. this led me down this interesting road of “oh really…you’ll get me halfway there and then i need to decide if i actually want something enough to spend anything for it myself.” the trade was any part of myself, be it money or otherwise, for any part of the thing i wanted.

becoming the person you want to be costs something. it costs time. it costs discipline. it costs practice. it costs laughing with a 80-year old woman about neither of you being able figure out zumba and thus ending up spooning. but is it worth it to you? i would like to be good at a lot, but there are precious few things that i am willing to pay for myself.

now is your chance. what is it you are willing to pay for?

in 8th grade it was guess jeans and these reeboks. these days, it is raising these to know love firsthand and be women who know who they are, this guy over here to know i am his biggest fan, you–my new laughing/crying/risking friends–to know you are not alone, capturing life through a lens, and music in any way i can get it unless it is a kids CD and then i think that the risk is for certain not worth it.

you are not now who you will be. but you have no chance of becoming that person unless you risk some part of yourself to bring her into being.

ante up.

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2 Responses to Are We There Yet?

  1. Jillian says:

    You’re the best. Love this.

  2. Stephen says:

    I read once in a book written by a very influential art critic that, in his opinion, the purest form of art are high school love letters (I would also add ye olde mix tape). They risk everything to express something inexpressible. Some of the notes we wrote where just down right ridiculous! But hey we had nothing to loose. His beef was that art made these days is too safe, too over conceptualized, and just plan boring…I think he is right. As you put it, ‘becoming the person you want to be costs something’. -keep up the crazy

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