Here's another Natalie Goldberg writing prompt. These prompts aren't really intended to be shared, per se, so I'm letting it be what it is with little editing or explanation. The direction of this prompt was to fill in the blank and when ideas slowed, to simply write the words I am thinking again and again. The point is to keep putting words and sentences on the page or screen, and on this day in July, I accomplished that. I'm also remaining accountable to myself by posting weekly to this blog. Without further ado.
I'm thinking of how nice it is that I shared a favorite band's concert with my daughter. I'm thinking of how sometimes she talks too much, and I have to remember she's a little girl, and I need to be a net to catch all her words.
I'm thinking about for as much as I want to be touched, it's by an adult I want to be touched. She put her sweet little hand on my back as the band played and I wanted to move away. I am thinking that it was such a nurturing gesture, and I worry about what it does to her to nurture her mother. What I've witnessed of the nurturing of mothers by daughters hasn't always been for the best.
Perhaps my daughter's nurture stems from my own, and that I should be grateful for rather than resistant to, but still what I really want is a man's hand on my lower back feeling his body close as I sway to the music.
I am thinking about how I'd never heard the cello part of their band sound so strong and complement the other parts of the music as well as last night. I am thinking of how Scott seemed of sound mind and when he's in the zone how good the music is. I am thinking of Seth and his tenderness. The tenderness that gets expressed to the fans, but also flows through lyrics and sentiments. Maybe he brings the softness and his brother brings the grit.
I am thinking of the songs I love on albums that I've never seen live. I am thinking about the mirror ball and what sparkle it added to my favorite song, Laundry Room.
I am thinking a lot about how different I feel these days than I did four years ago. It didn't feel like it at the time, but in retrospect I can see how fragile I was. I was stronger then than I'd been in a long while, which only goes to show how much of a whispery shell I had become. Today I am made of steel. I am sturdy and unwavering. I know my mind and I follow my gut. When I am uncertain, I stay still until the certain answer or next right move surfaces. Only then do I act.
This feels like a superpower, this sturdiness. I am so much better able to protect my heart. Protecting my heart and moving in my own self-interest comes naturally now. I feel less needy. I don't feel dependent on others to validate or hold me up. A dear couple's leaving town when they did required me to rely on myself and trust that I didn't need other adults to prop me up. I wouldn't have known that until their absence required it of me. Feeling distant from another friend doesn't feel personal like it might have years ago. She's in a different season of life. I feel like my independence from her is a way to honor her. Like, Look at me, you helped me get to this point! I don't need to rely on you as I once did. I can hear your voice in my head when I need it, and the marvelous thing is that I don't need that kind of support so keenly any more, and when I do, I know how to give it to myself. That is a gift she gave me.
I am thinking of how with time I am able to rebuild a friendship that stands alone, that does not require someone else's interference. It is my sturdiness that makes this possible, and also maturity and has added layers to my thin-skinned nature. I take so few things personally today. I still feel my feelings, but I know they are fleeting and that the other stuff isn't about me, and does not need to be metabolized as such.
I am thinking of how great it is to grow older and wiser. What a privilege that is.