Monday, March 7, 2011

Older, yes. Wiser? Hmm...

So my birthday is tomorrow, March 8. No, no...put away the noisemakers and balloons, keep the confetti contained, this isn't a milestone birthday, at least not from a numeric standpoint. I do, however, hope this will be an important year and one that will kick off with little treats like shamrock shakes and cupcakes.

Perhaps because my birthday does fall in the early part of the year, it is often my mental starting point for the year, especially as I've grown older. I make and break New Year's resolutions just like the rest of the planet, but I think it's the arrival of my birthday that really feels like the start of a new year for me.

What does the coming year hold? No crystal ball here but I've thought about it and have come to a few conclusions...

# More little road trips to the nearby racetracks & polo matches and more time spent in the company of not only horses but other people who also like horses.

# Be a better correspondent. From small thank you notes to actual letters sent via the US Mail, it's time to reacquaint myself with the pleasure of stationery and handwritten cards.

# Practice being content.

# Finally, engage in more storytelling. I can't say that I really enjoy the writing process--it is god damned hard work--but it is a growth process as well. For most of the past decade I was very content to help others get their stories in order--to help their voice come through in the best and clearest way possible. I've also felt that generally, someone other than me--anyone other than me--was better equipped to tell most stories. Even if I was passionate about the subject or it had a strong resonance for me, I believed that others could tell it better than I could. No more. There are stories I want to tell and if I want them told properly, I'm actually the only one to do it. I wish it hadn't taken me so long to be willing to see that, but at least I'm up for the challenge now. I care about too many places, people, and events small and large to let them fall from memory or worse, go utterly unnoticed. World, you're on notice.

Many years ago, at a drive-in in Lake City, Minnesota, where we were for a high school basketball game a waitress left a note on the back of our bill. My father used the contents of the note for years with his young track athletes and it's perfect for me as a motto for the year ahead, as well. The 10 most important two letter words...If it is to be it is up to me. As true now as it was all those years ago.

Now to find the aforementioned shake and procure a birthday cupcake...


Sid Fernando said...

Happy bday MLA. And looking forward to some stories from a voice I've always found enchanting.

Frances J. Karon said...

Felicidades, Michele! But now, to borrow from Cookie Monster, "Me want cupcake!" so thanks a lot!!

I, too, look forward to the stories :)