Joy and Grace

I’ve mentioned many times in the past how Shiva has inspired me to conquer fears in my own life. She is the bravest being I know. The way she takes on each new day makes me sparkle with pride, and more than a little envy. If only we all could view the world like Shiva does, we’d be much more authentic, much more passionate people.

There are others inspiring me today. People like Karen Walrond and Brené Brown and Maggie Mason. There are projects in the world, started by these  and many other amazing women, that I think, I hope, I have the courage to join. No, join is the wrong word. I’ve joined things before and let it come to nothing. This time I intend to participate, to throw myself in like my dog threw herself at the flyball box last night.

Shiva doesn’t wait on the sidelines, content to watch everyone else explore. Not my dog. Instead she tugs, races, wiggles, lunges, at every new obstacle, desperate to find out what it is and how it can benefit her in the future. You should hear her howl when held back. It’s hilarious. And chastening.

In my first step in engaging with the life I want to live, I am going to follow the lead of those that have kindled their own courageous journeys, and compile a list of the things that fill me with joy and grace.

  • Singing in the shower
  • Dancing with my dog
  • Late-night conversations about nothing
  • Baking and filling the kitchen with the smell of something sweet
  • Taking photos of my husband when he’s not looking
  • Starting a new book and finishing an old one
  • Emailing my best friend
  • Teaching my dog a new trick
  • Picking up The Cat
  • Making plans
  • Looking forward to Christmas
  • Buying gifts for my sister
  • Accomplishing something all on my own
  • Sleeping in a tent with rain pattering outside
  • Trying something I’ve never tasted before
  • Watching animals play
  • Publishing a new post
  • Sleeping in just late enough
  • Agility! Agility! Agility!
  • Playing with my dog in flyball class
  • Watching the people I love do things they love
  • Talking about dogs

Just writing all this down has made me a lot lighter! I will have to add to this as I think of more as it doesn’t feel long enough. I’m glad I took the time to focus on things that make me happy. We don’t do that very much as adults. It feels almost decadent. But I urge everyone to try, even if just for five minutes. It’ll make you feel better. I promise.

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