I can't believe there's only one more day left in the challenge. I missed one day completely (16), and my very first entry came in past the deadline because I didn't quite comprehend the whole "12-12 Eastern time" thing yet. Days #20 and #28 were the only two I felt like I just published something because I had to--the rest, successful or not, were from the heart. So I'm definitely calling this a win.
Last month, inspired ironically enough by a tech conference, I took up bullet journaling. It's sounded cool for a year or so, but I didn't think I'd have the stick-to-it-iveness to make it worth my while. I have a tendency to get super excited about every new idea, but be lazy in the execution. The hands-on practice, specific examples, and yes, the tutorial in how to draw a banner convinced me it was worth a try, and I've been loving it ever since.
One of the many (MANY) lists I've started in my journal is called "I Did It!" I know we're all supposed to focus on gratitude, but at the risk of sounding insufferably smug, I kind of already do. But I also tend to sell myself short, so I decided to write down one accomplishment each day. Nothing huge (unless it's that kind of day), but something I did that I can take a little pride in.
Looking over what I've done in the last month, I see everything from my horrifyingly overdue storage of the Christmas boxes to using a new recipe, from making the gloriously feminist dishtowel to participating in my first twitter chat. I noted the weekend I commented on 60 SOL posts, and tomorrow I already know I will commemorate this month of slicing.
There were times when I had to really wrack my brain to come up with any accomplishments for the day. I want to keep my list pretty focused. My husband and I started a new TV show together--fun, but not an accomplishment. I was happy that a family member with mental health issues did something that showed significant progress--an accomplishment, but not mine. I got up and went to work, I washed dishes, I folded laundry--basic expectations, not accomplishments. I joined Weight Watchers--an important step, but not yet an accomplishment. Still, knowing myself means I can identify things that are accomplishments for me, even if they wouldn't be for someone else. I am ridiculously afraid of confrontation for a supposedly mature woman, so the first accomplishment I noted was pushing back with data when my principal questioned the value of daily read-alouds in my middle school classroom. I love my introversion and my peaceful nature, but I want to celebrate when I show some gumption, some energy, some follow-through.
The past few years have been mostly a matter of hanging on. Things have been challenging, and I have needed every second of quiet recharging time I can get. But some things are shifting and settling, and I'm remembering that I used to Get Things Done, even with my passive tendencies. I traveled. I organized an exchange camp for students from two different countries. I founded and ran a hiking club. I learned how to knit socks. I went on a Fulbright teaching exchange.
I painted every wall in this house, some of them more than once.
In my second twitter chat, the day after the first one, I jokingly said that since Michigan's nErDcamp is too far for me to travel to, I would have to organize one here in the northwest. Another participant said she'd been thinking the same thing, and now we are in touch and cautiously committed to trying to make this happen in summer 2018. It would be a big project, and not like anything I've ever done before. It will mean working with people I don't actually know (yet), and balancing my own ideas with theirs, trying to co-lead without being a control freak.
The acts of taking risks, trying new things, building community, and following my passions--this all sounds a lot like what the Slice of Life challenge encompasses.