Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2010 Resolutions

I've never really gotten into resolutions, but then I don't like budgets and diets either, and usually January 1st is about restraint, moderation, about self discipline. Already, the animal part of me can feel the presence of a proposed bit and bridle, (to use the Aristotle image) at the mere suggestion of eat less sugar and fat, exercise and cut up the credit cards. Even though I know intellectually, these would be helpful to my well being and long term goods, the horse chafes at the prospect, stamping, snorting and glowering at the would be charioteer in me proposing such a crazy idea.

I've never had much luck with all things in moderation and my chariot is the proof. I haven't asked in prayer for that assistance, and more so, I haven't asked because it isn't my heart's desire. I guess having nine children makes it obvious, mine by nature, is not a moderate soul.

But I know it is not what we do but how we do it that makes a day full, makes a life sparkle. In writing, what determines a writer from a person who writes as a hobby is BIC time. (body in chair). A hobbyist writes when they get to it, when they're inspired, when the ideas are crackling and popping like bacon. When the muse is with us, the very smells of the ideas jazz us to want to do more. But when there are no lines in our head so good we keep repeating them until we can find a crayon and torn envelope to write them down, the blank page of a word perfect program feels like a K2daring the unprepared hiker to take the first step. A hobbyist will wait for inspiration, a Sherpa to guide. A writer starts up the hill daily with or without one.

Now my sister is the introspective one in the family; she is also a natural rider and an expert on horses. She understands what goes on in her own head and heart immediately, intuitively; and she rides magnificently. My charioteer's a bit slow on the uptake and my capacity to ride a horse; it's shamefully amature and worse, seasoned with my own Texas bravado. I can do it, but anyone who knows anything, knows I know nothing but that I think I know what I'm doing.

The one thing I can do, is get on a horse and go VROOM. I love that flying feeling until I remember, I'm not entirely in control and we're going way too fast and man am I an idiot who is going to break her neck if she doesn't pull up, whoa, Whoa, WHOA! It's probably why when I was at camp, they put me in horse musical chairs with the oldest horse in the stable. But I digress.

When I write things, I usually go VROOM and then pull up and have that "Whoa." moment about whatever it is I've been hashing over on the page about my own life after I've written at least 1000-2000 words. She half jokingly told me, "You should write more."

So it is, that I had the "Whoa" moment that writing, like jogging, like riding, budgeting, is a process of being first and foremost, willing to take on whatever it is, to start, and then to edit and refine as you go and keep doing it every day. That whispering to the horse how the chariot could go VROOM if only she submitted a little, might be the charioteer's best bet. The horse might not be receptive to being attached to a chariot via a bit, bridle and all of that, the chariot could use some care and a bit of paint and trim, and the charioteer should get more willing to practice and become more educated about the whole direction they need to be going, but being allowed to run full throttle once they get started, that they all three understand.

So this year, I resolve to stop treating any of my life like a hobby. Every day is a new document demanding my attention and dedication, and every day is also, an old piece requiring editing and refinement. This year, I resolve to go Vroom and learn to say Whoa before I come close to breaking my neck, and also to talk to my sister more often.


MightyMom said...

maybe if you and your sister went on long rides together something might rub off....

Mary said...

Can I get an "Amen!". Awesome post my friend!

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!