I am participating in the alphabet salad word of the year linkup.
What a mind melting exercise. I tossed around a few words before I was finally presented with the one that actually resonated.
I thought connection, creativity, friendship, authentic, joy, delicious. These are cool words to live by for a year but didn’t really sit well in my heart and soul. They didn’t feel like the words I could carry around for 2016.
My word for 2016 is ALIVE
Definition of Alive
- (of a person, animal, or plant) living, not dead.
Synonyms: living, live, breathing, vital, vigorous, flourishing
- Alert and active, animated.
Synonyms: animated, lively, alert, active, energetic, spirited, flourishing, enthusiastic, aware, alert, sensitive vibrant, and sparkling.
Look at these awesome words, how marvellous would it be to live these words, on your best day to be sparkly and vibrant and on your worst day just to breathe.
Are you all thinking what a weird word huh? Because well I am alive, my heart beats, my brain works, all my internal organs are functioning.
ALIVE struck me as the perfect word because, you know when you feel like you are just existing. When most days feel like Groundhog Day? When everything feels boring or a hassle? When you feel like there is nothing to be excited about? I don’t want to feel like this I want to feel ALIVE, even if that means a messy emotional lump of woman. If I am acknowledging the emotion I am ALIVE. I mean shit I got a tattoo so I could feel. There would be fly in days when I would exhale for the first time in 21 days. I would actually get an instant headache and have overwhelming fatigue from holding on to every single tiny emotion for 3 weeks.
A blog post from Toko-pa had me thinking the word ALIVE could be my word. Toko-pa writer, artist and tender of dreams, Toko-pa has been interviewed by CNN News & BBC Radio and her writing has appeared in publications around the world.
These passages from her post connected with me. Made me want my life to be more alive, and beautiful and messy with emotion, love, laughter, experiences, honesty.
I want to be sandwiched in the middle of a messy togetherness. I want to be warned before I do something stupid. I want to be forgiven when I do it anyway.
I want to hear your dreams. I want to raise a revolution for gentleness. I want to call out the bullshit on consensus reality.
I don’t want to be another faker. I don’t want to show you my good side and hide my humanity. I don’t want to dole you out my Self in digestible status-chunks. I want to challenge you in long, drawn-out rituals and still find you interested. I want to feed you seventeen course meals made with spices I crushed. I want to recite you circular poems, each beginning cutting a deeper grasp. I want to make you feel something, even if it’s awkward. I want to sing you songs which are ancient and new. I want to carve stories in trees with tools my elders fashioned.
Another inspiration for me was the magazine Flow. An article in the latest edition “Don’t be afraid of emotions”. Some of these extracts relate directly back to my word.
Emotions actually proved us with useful messages about ourselves, letting us know who we are and what we value. (YEP this is what I need)
I’m someone who prefers to walk away from sadness. I distract myself, numb my feelings and flee into my thoughts – anything to avoid feeling any kind of bad feelings. (UMM hello, needle scraping my skin for 4hrs).
A nurse that I was having lunch with yesterday also inspired me and my word. She was telling me a story about how she was in a resus situation with an 89.5 year old man. When they resuscitated him he held the Dr’s hand and asked if they could make him live until he was 90. The Dr said he would do the best he could. The man represented to the hospital unwell at 90 years and 1 week. The same nurse was caring for him. He told her how he wanted to live until 90 because his family organized a massive party for him, and he had family and friends travelling from all over the world to visit him. He wanted to see everyone in the one place before he died. He told her he was happy to die now because he had willed himself to stay alive until the party. He died later that night – peacefully.
Of course how could I pick a word for a whole year without finding some inspiration from OPRAH.
Her book “What I know for sure” was a Christmas present from my husband. On page 13 the words that I love are:
More to the point, if your life ended tomorrow, what would you regret not doing?
Whether you flounder or flourish is always in your hands – you are the single biggest influence in your life.
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