Thoughts on a blue moon

It's new year's eve and a blue moon: a riot of beautiful mass delusion. I'm not immune. I can still use the word "magic" without irony.

I look for four-leaf clovers. I blow the seeds off dandelions. I wish on stars. (When I was a little girl I could never understand the difference between that and saying my prayers.) And I love new year's eve and new year's day, the days when people unabashedly display the meanings they've assigned to their lives, wear their hopes and frailties like a fine comprehensive sweat.

And the blue moon! The thing that other things happen only once in! Like deeply enjoying the company of another human being. Like passion for your everyday life. Like immense confidence that who you are is enough for your journey. Like trust, and curiosity, and camaraderie. Like bliss.

I understand what rare liberty it is to touch those things, much less claim them as my life. I understand the privilege that lets me take for granted that those treasures are sustainable. Or that lets me even write these sentences, much less in comfort and in peace.

It isn't enough that I sit in my luxury and satisfaction and feel grateful. Security isn't enough for contentment. If I live without boldness and invention and generosity, I will have settled. And I will have failed the part of me that believes.

I can't live my life like an unplugged appliance. I'm not perfect, and there's plenty of life stuff that I'm really bad at. (Not things like "can't change a flat tire," but things like "often starts and doesn't finish projects.") But I can't let myself wallflower in a corner, waiting for rescue or absolution, on account of it.

I'm tired of waiting for myself to catch up. I'm tired of catching myself, in any way, waiting for my life to start. It's a bit late to be playing that game.

I'm tired of going along with the popular belief that it's anyone's job to build someone else's self-esteem. I think it's hard enough work just to refrain from ripping it down. Why not instead work to create conditions in which we can each build our own self-esteem?

Be honest with me and I'll believe I deserve honesty. Value my work and I'll believe my work valuable. Love me and I will believe I am lovable. (Lie, devalue, and hate me, and I'll think you're an ass.) But constantly reassure me of my worth and I will only learn that my worth is something up for questioning.

What to do? Be bold. Be inventive. Be generous.

Happy new year, friends. Here's hoping it finds you in bliss and in good company, or believing that those things are yours to find.


Anonymous said...

Happy new year friend, having u as a friend was a gift to mr in 2009. Joining the gym for 2 months til we can get back outside again. As in your previous post .... Had no idea how much I would
miss the road. Here's to a great 2010 and all the best on your agressive schedule. Your friend zip, triathlete. See u at the gym