What defines me has changed many times throughout these years of writing. There was never just one thing I could say that did define the person I am. The woman I have become and the writer who has given me so much more than I ever thought possible. There is something very special in the written word. I can connect with people, or I can quickly alienate myself by stating a political opinion, a matter of choice, or simply disagreeing with someone else’s views.
What defines me is complicated. It depends on the year we are speaking, me as a child, a young adult, as a student or professional. Everyone who has come into my life, good and bad influences, negative and positive souls have given something to my development. But when I was younger, the pain seemed greater, the tormentors cruel and nightmares wrapped themselves around my slumber. Now, I cope different, because what they have given me as an adult is processed differently. Perhaps my skin is a little thicker, but I know now whose words I value and whose words drop dead when their wind stops blowing. True colors are shown brightly, I can see a little more clearly, even if my prescription has changed.
What defines me is what I choose to define me now. By the books, I read (If you haven’t read Grit by Angela Duckworth, I highly suggest it.) and by the novel, I wrote. That is what will define me by some harshly, but thankfully by most of those, I’ve given it to have read it with gusto and cheered the results of my labor. And THAT is what I need to define me now as I search for an agent, look for a publisher and allow my work to be open, examined, revealed, liked, disliked, enjoyed or placed back on the shelf. But writing my novel has been a glorious definition of what makes me me.
What defines you? I’d love to know. Write to me.
Learning Defines Me…
Today I begin a ‘Blogging 101″ course, or perhaps I should call it a challenge- learning to be a better blogger – meeting, discussing and growing with a unique group of individuals who have a passion in some way, shape or form that involves words.
My hope is to not only learn the tricks of the trade as it were, to creating a blog that draws people to its pages and invites them to read -which I hope, leads to something special. That may be a connection with a situation, perhaps my love of animal rescue, and the documentary film I have the extreme honor of working on with some amazing people who do whatever it takes to help a dog, cat, horse – in need – to hear their voice and remove them from a horrid condition, abusive owner, or deplorable living. Perhaps someone will be inspired to take up a cause and help educate – adopt don’t shop/ how overpopulation was created by greedy humans and must be stopped with the help of humans. How to change the laws in your own town and the nation regarding the abuse of animals. High fines that go toward local animal shelters and rescue groups, long jail time and payment towards medical care etc.
My hope is to share the journey I’ve been on now for a year this month – on becoming a writer. How I’ve changed, grown – who I’ve met – who you can meet – perhaps by sharing information we can encourage, guide, laugh and grow in the process.
My joy would be your feedback to my writing – from fiction to non-fiction to a new discovery of slam poetry. Finding time every single day to write – it is such a part of me, as important as diet and exercise, as breathing and eating. To how to find or create a writing group. I started in an outstanding one at a writing retreat – only to come home and join a group that turned out to be anything but helpful and inspiring. I’d leave depressed and doubting and angry. It does not have to be that way – the group I am in now has a variety of ages, cultures and skills – and I learn from every single person there.
My interests? All different types of writing, non-fiction, poetry, fiction – taking workshops and going on writing retreats. I cannot imagine life without my dogs – all three are rescued. For years I’ve put everyone else’s needs before my own and now I can decide when I want to work, what art I want to focus on – returning fro Montana I stacked several different sizes of stones to remind me of the beauty I saw there – and the impermanence of creating something. Enjoy the moment as it were. Making people smile and laugh – I love the unexpected – finding the funny in the every day. Time seems to stop and dance when there is laughter.
My blog – Touched By Words – is my first leap of faith into writing in public – to share my journey, my thoughts, experiences, ideas and hope you will share yours with me. I look forward to this journey together.
Breathe Deep, Think Peace
Practicing Mindfulness Defines Me…
Even when the snows were deep and cold here in the northeast this past winter, I’ve tried to be mindful of the beauty. The way the sun sparkles on the snow drifts, watching birds search for seed in the feeder after a flurry, the way the ice sickles form along the front porch.
Trying to find the beauty in spring and summer is different. The winter can be monochromatic for months – but the warm moths bring changes each day sometimes slowing things down so its actually easier to see the beauty begin.
For example the lilacs are the first thing to bloom. Tiny buds to clusters of tiny flowers with an intoxicating fragrance. You must practice mindfulness or you will not only miss the stages of their beauty, but the fragrance slips quickly away with each passing day.
Being mindful is finding beauty – searching for it perhaps in unexpected places as well as the usual places.
If you look at a flower bed, you expect to see beautiful flowers. That is wonderful indeed. Someone worked very hard to nurture that beauty. But there is also looking at how the rain pours over a rock and the colors it brings out. The chipmunk sitting under a leave umbrella, how the leaves themselves glisten and shine in a sun shower. The way the earth smells after a rain compared to a bright sunny day – each has their own beauty.
I invite you to pause, take a moment where ever you may be, and look for something out of the ordinary beautiful. Let your eyes rest on it – give it a moment to admire it – then remember it. You may be very pleasantly surprised at how your mind calms, you take a little deeper breath and can truly enjoy the peaceful feeling it brings.
I wish you mindfulness.
Breathe Deep, Think Peace
Growing and Changing What Defines Me…
It was brought to my attention, by a very dear childhood friend, how angry I was in my last post of What Defines Me. To be honest I was angry when I heard I was angry! But I know if that person did not care about me, nothing would have been said. So I sincerely appreciate the love and concern. Another lesson learned. Although my writing is a place to vent frustrations and what I view as an injustice or wrong. It was never my intention to use my blog for such frustrations. There are other venues for that.
If I may share what I do each day is write at 750words.com It is the perfect place one can write whatever you’d like in complete privacy and confidentiality. If you have not had a chance to check it out, please give yourself that small gift – take a look, try it out, the metaphysical sections are amazing and will tell you things about your writing you may have never realized before.
That being said, I do hold fast to my view of expressing myself as I see fit. If I am angry there is a reason and perhaps YOU could help me work through it. However, it was not my intention to point blame or just bitch and moan for no purpose other than to see my own thoughts validated.
I know I am growing and changing in what defines me. I sincerely hope it is for the best. That it is productive and insightful – then even the anger was worth it. IF it brings me to the other side of frustration.
So I ask for your forgiveness, your understanding and your patience as I keep making mistakes, learning and growing from the experience.
Oh, I’m no longer angry. I have taken the experience and made it into something positive – more writing time, more coffee at the diner and occasionally a glass of wine at Pete’s Saloon. It is only ONE piece of my puzzle of in this journey. It is the completed picture that will ultimately defines me.
Adding to the list:
This week I learned what does NOT define me. The opinion of someone I had hoped to admire and learn from, but was shown how opinionated, stubborn and narrow minded they really are. I’m actually grateful I found this out now. What may surprise you is that I am deeply saddened and feel sorry for her. She does not realize how special something is – she does not see how fragile what she holds in her hand and under her pen is – and she, along with a man she sits way to close to in session – will strangle those around her instead of nurturing and allow them to grow in their own direction. This person does not define me, nor will I allow her to control and dictate anything I do. I am strong. I am brave and I am fearless. ( Why wasn’t I all these things 25 years ago?!!) and I will continue to write.
I have learned that this list will change as the years pass. What was important to me, or defined me when I was younger is much different now that I have traveled through a few miles of time. What was inspirational to me last year, may be different this year. So please know as you read, the definition changes, shape shifts, alters and grows with each passing day.
I am a woman. In every sense of the word.
I am a teacher, a mother, a wife and an artist.
The artist has been gagged for a lot of years, she is just now starting to speak again.
I love music, photography and rescue dogs.
My family is unique and usual and amazing and I am very proud of that.
I live with my husband and my ex-boyfriend – THAT is a book in and of itself!
My husband was a Sr. Elec. Engineer in the defense industry – he has reinvented himself and found his creative side. CoLab 3D Imaging is a collaboration of 3D artists with hopes of finding a niche in the film & television industries. Yes, that was a selfish plug.
I love to read. I even read cookbooks! And learned early on that cooking is cheaper than therapy.
What may surprise you to know about me is that I was a Mime in college. I was also asked to leave a big named toy store after gathering a group of children, handing them plastic light sabers and having a wonderful ‘moc war’ in the doll aisle. No dolls, shoppers or any material was damaged during our rather short lived siege. Watched a lot of kids faces smile in shock that an adult can remember when they were a kid and have fun was pure joy. Children are amazing in their own right. Adults could learn a lot from them if they’d give them the time.
I wish I could play the guitar and piano past the dozen or so songs I know, but I am thankful I can play at least that much.
I have always felt like there was something I was suppose to be doing – some greater purpose I need to fulfill – that enlightenment is just a moment away – but I could never reach it or was afraid to try. I am not afraid any more. I know what it is like to have my breath taken away by something beautiful as well as having it knocked out of me.
I am also very grateful to YOU the reader. Thank you for being there!
Breathe Deep, Think Peace