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April 2, 2012

Lately, as we try to sever our ties and create new ones, I find myself thinking, “What the hell are we doing?” So at the risk of veering toward the Pollyanna, this post is my attempt at remembering some of the things I’ve learned in the last year, which is quite possibly the most surprising and remarkable year of my life.

1. Love your family. Tell them so. Often.
2. No (wo)man is an island. Only sometimes the bridges are hard to see.
3. Mercy is all that you need and much more than you deserve.
4. Sometimes the hardest thing is also the rightest thing.
5. When you put your mind to it, you can surprise even yourself.
6. The world is a miraculous place.
7. You are blessed beyond measure. Even when you think the world is coming to an end. Even when the world is coming to an end.
8. Nothing is closer to the Apocalypse than New York City. This is, surprisingly, both a good and a bad thing.
9. You need to make music every day, not just think about it and write about it.
10. Nature is beautiful. Cities are beautiful.
11. It’s not over yet.
12. WFUV is psychic. And possibly has access to your record collection.
13. When you find a song that moves you, listen to it as often as possible and send it to your friends.
14. Magic is everywhere. You just need to know what to look for.
15. So are stories. Or maybe they are the same thing.
15. You are never too old to learn new things
16. Learning new things keeps you from getting old.
17. More and more, it is a balance between memory and mystery.
18. Friends are all the armor you need. And all the fuel. And all the cushioning.
19. Make sure you are giving as good or better than you get.
20. What matters is what you do for others. What matters is what you do for you. What matters is what you do.
21. A long walk cures many things. Even if you’re being chased by zombies.
22. Say thank you as often as possible.
23. Figure out what is important with you. Think about this often.
24. Read good books.
25. Breathe.

What about you? What have you learned? What advice do you give yourself?

8 Comments leave one →
  1. April 2, 2012 8:53 pm

    I have learned not to say everything that comes into my head.

  2. eleanorio permalink
    April 2, 2012 9:10 pm

    This is a great list. Thank you for sharing.

  3. April 3, 2012 8:53 am

    I like 19 and 20.

    At my senior (high school) dinner, an English teacher advised the following:

    1) Read good books

    2) tell the ones you love that you love them

    3) stay in touch

    It was very moving to see a lot of 18 year old guys fumbling through, “thanks, dude” to each other for the first time.

  4. freshhell permalink
    April 3, 2012 9:41 am

    I am learning and relearning all these things every day. And doing The Artist’s Way is helping to remind me that. Look for those moments of synchronicity and opportunity and take advantage of every door that opens. Even when the space seems too small to fit through.

  5. April 3, 2012 11:43 am

    Great list, and I am going to reread this when I’m not at my sister’s with all the attendant chaos of a 3 y/o and 5 y/o.

    My addition to the list is:

    What you do is not who you are.

  6. iwom permalink
    April 3, 2012 12:55 pm

    Never deny yourself ice cream. NE-VER.

    Drop everything to garden no matter the weather if the garden is where you need to be.

    You are not going to be in a plane crash next time you’re up at 37,000 feet.

    It is okay to quit if your actions are not going to make the slightest bit of difference to the outcome: go where you CAN make a difference.

    You don’t HAVE to listen to your doctor.

    If your latest batch of whoopie pies does not come out quite right, turn it into a trifle.

    Try not to complain when you are required to go see Sweeney Todd on the professional stage for the eighth time. Try real hard.


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