Burning Questions

Monday was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. I already talked about it at Between Birthdays so I won’t dwell further on the details here. If there’s anything to The Secret and its premise that thoughts become things, well, I guess I’d better be thinking happy thoughts.

Ironically, I just had a conversation with my two younger children a couple of days ago, in which they asked, “Mom, if you were to win the lottery, what would you change about your life? Would you stop teaching piano lessons? Would you buy a different house? Would you drive a different car? Would you see the world?”

And I replied, honestly, “I would keep the majority of my piano students until they were ready to leave me. I have always wanted a gourmet kitchen, and I would love to have room for a grand piano, so I might move into a different house, provided I could find something in this general area. But I would definitely keep my little red Honda, although I might splurge on a little pick-up truck, too. And I would love to travel. The first thing I would do is that southern Caribbean cruise on Carnival.”

To which my 20yo replied, “Geez, Mom, you would book an eight-day Carnival cruise when you could afford to spend six months on a cruise ship?”

I thought about it a minute and said, probably a bit defensively, “Well, that particular itinerary really speaks to me. And it’s a real bargain, especially off-season.”

The boys looked at each other, rolled their eyes and said, “So if you won the lottery you would basically keep your life the way it is except that you would have more money?”

And the answer was, “Yes.”

And no. Yes, I am happy with my life. I love teaching and playing music and beading and knitting and writing and blogging. But I hate being at the mercy of my ex’s employment situation, worrying about medical bills and home repairs and the kids and I doing without things we need. Monday night I shed real tears, wondering how at the dichotomy between my gifts and talents and my financial situation. So I decided to participate in Danielle LaPorte‘s exercise and spend a few minutes thinking about how I really want it all to feel, whether or not I hit the jackpot. Here goes.

I want my day to feel like warm sunshine on my back.
I want kissing to feel hot biscuits dripping with butter and honey.
I want my next success to feel like winning an Academy Award.
I want my body to feel like a slinky.
I want smiling to feel like the first daffodils of spring.
I want my friendships to feel like yellow cake with chocolate frosting from my grandmother’s kitchen.
I want my nervous system to feel like stars on a summer night.
I want my gigs to feel like Michael Stipe showing up out of nowhere at a Coldplay concert and singing Night Swimming while Chris Martin plays the piano.
I want my neighborhood to feel like a symphony.
I want my integrity to feel like fresh fallen snow.
I want my money-making to feel like falling out of an airplane.
I want my word to feel like the look out of my dog’s eyes.
I want my laughter to feel like silver glitter.
I want the end of the day to feel like blue velvet.
I want being of service to feel like painting a room.
I want philanthropy to feel like opening a Christmas present.
I want my challenges to feel like walking out onstage in front of a thousand people.
I want my love to feel like a meteor, like a five-course gourmet meal, like a handmade quilt that wraps around me.
I want my writing to feel like Anne Lamott and Elizabeth Berg with a side of Amy Sedaris.
I want my ideas to feel like the incoming tide.

So there you have it. I’m feeling it. What about you?