This is an exercise from Julia Cameron’s book the Prosperous Heart.
I am grateful for
- the loving and generally amused support of my partner, Mike. He is 100% behind my pursuit of a career as a writer, and he accepts that there’s so much more to me than one thing – that I am not ONLY a Pagan, or only a priestess, or only a fatshion blogger, or only a perfume crafter, or only a dancer, or only a sci-fi fan. That I need all these elements in my life and a few more not always listed to feel as close to fulfilled as any person can.
- for my friends Chelo and Jondel. I don’t forget about either of them, and they were quite vocal in their support of me as a writer when graduate school was obviously becoming a soul-killing exercise.
- for the odd thing inside me that makes me reach out to those who are not visibly “my own.” My tribe is a hidden one, and much more colorful, noisy, and likely to challenge social norms – even norms held to by other Pagans – than some other tribes out there.
- for my beautiful, big, fat, muscular and fatty linebacker-on-a-woman’s body. It’s where my pleasure lives. I need my body to have sex and dance, my two favorite things in the world (writing is a physical necessity.) I suppose I need to change that line about the linebacker – there are women who play professional American football now, so there are women linebackers. And this is awesome.
- for another abstract thing within me that allowed me to mostly reject the expectations of my family. DAR meetings are boring and filled with female social violence. Ball State had an appalling sexual assault rate in the 90s. Despite enormous familial pressure coupled with their lying to my face about pressuring me, I was still able to say no, and weather the temper tantrums and what amounted to a murder attempt that followed. I’m not sure my subconscious IS a child – I was not consciously aware of why I was making these choices until years later, and now that I am, I have to wonder if there’s a grownup running around in that part of my brain who really, really looks out for me.
- for finding the shamanic dance group. I feel like this fills something I have yearned for since I first found out how good it feels to just let loose and dance as a teenager. Apparently there’s a radical change coming, and hopefully it’s one a)I can afford to participate in, since the local 5 Rhythms workshop is still out of my financial reach, and b)that maybe I can get to more easily in the winter.
- for Lisa, who has been part of my life and a career lifeline for wow, 14 years? Her sanity, support, and willingness to share her experiences has made the tough things I’ve faced over the years more bearable.
- for finding an immunologist who actually gives a shit that I spend 250 – 340 days a year in pain at varying degrees of low-level noise to out-and-out crippling, and is treating the disease and not the fatness.
- for figuring out the key to not going batshit crazy on steroids is to not eat sugar and to keep my cortisol down.
- for the Artist’s Way. I knew I was blocked, but I didn’t know how badly or why. I realize I’m dealing with a lot of pain, and since Dad died revisiting pain I had thought was resolved, but new bad behavior ripped open new wounds for me. That’s OK – thanks to this path I’m dealing with it as it happens. I’m also judging my work less and making better things because of it.
- Bonus: I got to meet A. while visiting with friends in the Smoky mountains. It was a wonderful experience, and I was happy to be there to get to know her, and I hope that what I shared with her will actually work for her in her life.