Wednesday, December 29, 2010

December 23-27: Getting Closer

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 really don't know what I would want my new name to be.  For a long time I wanted to be a Tiffany or an Amber because it seemed like all the rich girls were named that.  But for the most part I like my name.  Most people don't call me by my first name, they call me by my last name.  Just easier I guess.  But, at the end of the day, I think it suits me. 

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? 
This is kind of a hard one to pin-point.  I always know that things will end up okay, and I have always had that belief.  I guess I believe that they will end up as they should, whatever way that is, and I trust in the process.  It’s being stuck in something that’s crappy and hard to deal with when it’s hard to live by the faith that it will turn out okay.  

I guess my biggest “everything’s okay” moment was when I moved back home and started my teaching program.  I had basically spent the last year of my life living in a terrible situation and working at a job that was, for the most part, terrible.  I had no friends.  No life.  No family.  No money.  And nothing that really brought me joy.  I didn’t know why I had ever left California, what I was supposed to be doing in Chicago, and I wasn’t sure if I was moving back because I was scared of the unknown, or if it really was the best thing for me.  When I started that teaching program I knew that everything was okay, and in the end, I had made the right choice for my life and that things were going to be hard, and require dedication and work and commitment but that I would be okay in doing and dealing with those things because it was what was right for my life.

December 25: Photo.
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.


I captured this photo at my twin nieces 5th birthday party.  My sister has this really nice camera so I was just messing around with it and taking pictures of the kids.  My sister had hired a “Bubble Lady” to come do a bubble show with the kids and they had buckets and buckets of bubbles to play with, and all sorts of cool toys.  The kids loved it.  They spent hours with their hands immersed in bubbles and bubble goop.

This one photo is one of two that are my favorite from that day.  But this one especially captures something unique.  To me it symbolizes the sweet innocence of childhood.  The park.  The bubbles.  The sweet little hands.  But on another level this picture tells a far greater story.  No matter age, or date, or place, or occasion or time in our life…we are always reaching for something.  And at the same time, it seems that no matter what we reach for, it is just out of our reach.  We have to stretch high and high onto our tippy toes to get it, and even then, sometimes it disappears.  The fragile nature of the bubbles represents to me that even when we do get the thing we are reaching for, sometimes, as soon as we get it, it disappears.  Instantly.  Then we are on for the next thing.  The next dream.  Hope.  Goal.  

I can only imagine that once the little boy reached and caught the bubble that it popped, and almost instantly did he turn around looking for the next one to chase.  But for just one moment maybe the little boy (Alex) reached the bubble and his whole world was set right.  He did it…Or, perhaps, it got away and he had to give up on it, and move on to the next one.

December 26: Soul Food.
What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth & touched your soul?

I will never forget the Chicken Romano  I had at the Chart House.  It was pan-seared with a blend of Romano cheese & panko breadcrumbs, with lemon shallot butter, tomatoes, asparagus & Yukon gold mashed potatoes.  It was undoubtedly the most moist and flavorful chicken I have ever eaten.  I still drool thinking about it.  The location was beautiful.  We were on the ocean front in Monterrey, my boyfriend at the time and I.  It wasn’t really a beautiful evening, in fact the topic of conversation was heartbreaking.  But…the food…that was a whole other ordeal.  That chicken, was delicious and I would gladly go back for it again and again.  

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 a lot of events this summer vividly.  I had the freedom to go on lunch dates and hang out at the pool with friends and get coffee with friends in the mornings.  It was joyful because for the most part I was free during the day and going to school at night.  It was nice to have so much freedom, and I am really looking forward to that same freedom again this summer.  Regardless, a moment that truly sticks out is when I was sitting poolside with my old roommate Julie.  We were eating salad from my favorite salad place Buckhorn Grill.  We were just sitting there in our bathing suits, soaking up the summer sun, enjoying a fresh salad, and talking about life.  I felt overwhelmed with happiness to have such a good friend that I could be open and honest with, to be able to enjoy the summer sun in ways I hadn’t in many years, and just so glad that I had come back to California.  And I was reminded that my friendships and community that I had in California were the exact reason that I knew I needed to come back to begin with and I was so grateful that I hadn’t missed this moment. 

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