Patti Digh worked her book around these topics concerning life as a verb:
- Say yes.
- Be generous.
- Speak up.
- Love more.
- Trust yourself.
- Slow down.
1. What awakens you to the present moment? The physical...The feeling of fresh air on my face as I stand at the bedroom window at the beginning of the day, the warmth of the pup's head on my knee as I sprawl on the sofa at its end, thirst quenched by cold water, sadness comforted by a hug.
2. What are 5 things you see out your window right now?
Open gates onto the road, busy with homeward traffic this Friday evening
The line of trees that is the vicarage landmark for visitors
A jack russell taking his owner for an evening walk
Teenagers waiting at the bus stop opposite
and a small silver Fiat containing Hattie Gandhi. She's home for the night! Squeee...
(returning much later)
3. Which verbs describe your experience of God?
Loving, challenging, exciting, delighting, renewing
4. From the book on p. 197:
Who were you when you were 13? Where did that kid go?
At 13 I was over responsible and over anxious...My mother had had heart surgery the year before, after many years of poor health, and I believed that her well-being depended on my being a "good girl" (though this obligation was one I laid entirely on myself: my parents were keen to let me be a child for as long as possible - and back in the 1970s, the early teens carried no veneer of sophistication to confuse the issue). As an only child, I knew that not only was I probably the centre of the universe, but it was all up to me,and it (whatever it was) was probably all my fault. Who else was there?
But I escaped my self-imposed burdens through books, through music, through writing endlessly.
Where did that kid go? Somewhere around my 40th birthday I realised that actually it didn't all depend on me...even the children who were my responsibility were also repsonsible for themselves. I threw away the anxieties (mostly), but books, music, writing are still a refuge and a joy.
5. From the book on p. 88: If your work were the answer to a question, what would the question be?
What makes you get up in the morning and sing as you walk down the road?
Bonus idea for you here or on your own--from the book on p. 149: "Go outside. Walk slowly forward. Open your hand and let something fall into it from the sky. It might be an idea, it might be an object. Name it. Set it aside. Walk forward. Open your hand and let something fall into it from the sky. Name it. Set it aside. Repeat. . . ."
How beautiful. I've always always loved the Advent Prose "Rorate coeli" - drop down ye heavens from above and let the skies pour down righteousness" Righteousness, peace, reconciliation ........but I love walking outside, so there is more
I have to catch a star - of course I do. I've wanted to for always...to hold that gleaming miracle, its light leaking out from between my fingers. Then comes self-confidence - something to use myself and then pass on to some much beloved people who cannot recognise their own shininess.
Finally, a golden apple. In a world where treasures might fall from the sky, I return to the ancient myths that provided a longing backdrop to childhood imaginings...