The Very Best Thing

Personal Narrative
What's the best thing you did this year? — dream hampton (@dreamhampton) December 22, 2013 Writer/director dream hampton asked this question on Twitter and shared a steady stream of responses. People taught their children to read, nurtured loved ones in times of sorrow or ill-health, quit jobs they hated, and traveled or moved overseas. Some took classes and learned things that allowed them to radically transform their ways of being. Others wrote books, got married, took a chance on love, or learned to love themselves. It's a beautiful question, and one that requires no external metric. I've been thinking about it, and while there are lots of things I'm glad I accomplished or tried or read, I think the best thing I did was push beyond my comfort zone. There…
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Love, violence and transformations: A recap.

30 Day Blog Challenge
March was a great month of endings, beginnings, and transformations in general. I updated this space every day while in the midst of a whirlwind. The high energy and nonstop pace is in full swing for another couple of days, but I wanted to take a breath to share the top posts from last month. So I just moved. And I don't know about you, but for me moving is a special process full of resistance, excitement, and everything in between. I was slow to get started, but eventually, I did start packing. I've only spent one night in my new place, so no, I'm not settled yet. I'm always fascinated by narratives and the power of story, and maybe some of you are too? This blog about knowing your family's narrative,…
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Good vibrations.

Personal Narrative
I've reached that point in the packing process where the acoustics in my apartment have started to change. And really, the energy has been shifting all along in concert with my mood. Anticipation. Excitement. Stress. Sadness. Joy. It's making the packing go slowly. Which is fine. Packing, moving, like anything else in life, is a process. And on it goes. 2 days. #countdown
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Dawn and endings.

30 Day Blog Challenge, Personal Narrative
[caption id="attachment_1800" align="aligncenter" width="538"] Dawn at Starbucks Bay.[/caption] It's my favorite time of day - the dark before the dawn. First light alerts the world to the coming sunrise. This morning my cat is snuggled next to me as I write in my darkened bedroom. I have long favored early morning because it's nearly silent, mostly still. Hints of noises and shadows of movements as many of nature's beings prepare for the day ahead. Daniel once tweeted his praise for early mornings: the world is quiet, Spirit is loud. Yes. It's a time of hope and possibilities. Beginnings. Today is also an ending of sorts. Today marks my 30th post in as many days. I've completed my personal challenge. The last time I wrote 30 posts in 30 days I found…
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Where to?

30 Day Blog Challenge
So I'm moving, that much is clear, but it seems the where to is a great deal muddier. The short answer is, back home. It's second nature to call Atlanta home, since that's where I was born and raised, but honestly, I feel funny about it. In the technical sense, it is or was home, but as I wrote in November: What is home, exactly? A place or a moment that resonates. It’s gathering of old friends around a good game of Taboo. A visit to the tried and true corner barbershop one Saturday morning.  Sometimes home is less fleeting. It’s a city where sunshine runs rampant. A house you’ve built with your partner. Whenever, wherever your heart feels welcomed and your spirit feels at ease, is home. Moments and people in Atlanta…
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Spring cleaning.

30 Day Blog Challenge, Personal Narrative
I've decided to travel home lighter than I left. There is at least one table, and possibly two that won't make it across my "new" threshold. All the books (of course) are going, but all the clothes are not.  And that's where things have gotten interesting. I've had the pull to purge my closet since January. Time, location and will have kept me from it. That is, until today. The suits were the first to go. I bought several suits for a job I began over 6 years ago. My favorite two will make the trip, but the others, including three I've never worn, are being donated to Dress for Success. Although I don't desire those and many other items in my closet, forming the donate pile with those first…
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Looking forward.

30 Day Blog Challenge, Personal Narrative
A funny thing happened on the way to work. No, not really. But I needed a way to start today's blog post, and, why not? Nothing to make you chuckle, but I did find today worthy of note... As I drove through the more rural areas of Tampa Bay, I was greeted by canopy trees! If you've never spent time in Tallahassee, Florida, you may not be familiar with the canopy roads. These are long streets lined on either side by huge oaks dripping with Spanish moss. They hang over the roads like umbrellas, providing shade for the passing motorists. Canopies! And although the sight in Tampa Bay did not approach that glory, it was lovely to see the familiar splendor. It reminded me of Tallahassee, yes, but also of St.…
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More on moving.

30 Day Blog Challenge, Personal Narrative
So the corollary to "have you started packing yet?" is, "are you excited yet?" It's the same answer: No. I was excited when I debated the move, weighed the pros and cons. I considered the risks of moving versus the risks of staying. Did I want to chase dreams and new possibilities, or did I want to remain comfortable? I was excited when I put in my intent to vacate. It was official. The chase was on! But as we approach the actual day, my excitement has waned significantly. There's a good reason for that. I don't know if you know this, but moving simply isn't that much fun. Especially moving across state lines. There's stuff to do. Mail to forward. Utilities to turn on. Boxes to tape and label.…
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A word on packing.

30 Day Blog Challenge, Personal Narrative
So I'm moving. According to my countdown app, in 10 days and 18 hours, the moving guys from Blitz will be loading up the truck.  Once people find out you're moving, and D-day is close at hand, they start asking questions. Really, it's just one question, but it comes in a few different flavors: Have you started packing already? How's the packing coming along? Do you have a lot left to pack? In order, the answers are: No. It isn't. Yes, everything. It's part of my process. As one who has moved several times in recent years with basically the same stuff, I know I can pack in 2 days flat. One and a half if I'm really not feeling it. All of this includes a great deal of focus…
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Be true.

30 Day Blog Challenge, Personal Narrative
Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? What is it, and why does it move you? If you summon your courage to challenge something, you’ll never regret it. How sad it would be to spend your life wishing, “If only I had a little more courage.” Whatever the outcome, the important thing is to take a step forward on the path that you believe is right. There’s no need to worry about what others may think. It’s your life, after all. Be true to yourself. ~Daisaku Ikeda I first saw this quote in the November 2012 issue of Living Buddhism magazine. Sae Chonabayashi said it encouraged her to pursue her dreams. It encouraged me to do the same. At the time I read the piece, I was at a crossroads;…
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