Challenge Day One

The time is now.

This morning I woke up and immediately wanted to go back to sleep. The alarm startled me out of a dream wherein Guy was just about to drive us off a bridge into a body of water, because he was annoyed at my passenger-seat driving. Those sorts of dreams are stressful and exhausting. Plus, I stayed up too late working on this blog, then set the alarm with good intentions but poor foresight. Gone was my euphoric optimism from last night; in its place sat slight dread, and a certainty that I am already going to fail.

So I got up, and I did my 15 minutes of stretching. I put on some of my favorite songs for movement, and I worked out the tension of a too-short night of anxious sleep. Truth be told, I probably could have kept stretching for another half hour, but I got shit to do.

Daily Challenges

Intimate Time
CookingToday’s Menu: breakfast shake for me, salsa and cottage cheese for Guy (he’s a grown ass man, he can eat what he wants); for lunch I made tuna sandwiches served with banana; we ate leftover chicken and roasted vegetables for dinner.
Reading (Poetry)Today’s poem of the day was “Tall Ideas” by Adam Wolfond. It reminded me initially of an e.e. cummings poem, the way the syntax is jumbled and clipped, but learning that the poet is a 17-year old non-speaking autistic/neurodiverse person added a depth I didn’t get at first. Go read it!
Reading (Fiction) I intended to read Maid by Stephanie Land as my fiction challenge, but as I began reading I remembered that it is, in fact, a memoir. So I am reading that as well, but now am also reading Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks – today I read “Three Exhausting Weeks,” the first story. It’s about a whirlwind relationship with someone who’s incompatible, and it was a lighthearted relief after Maid, which I read first.
Reading (Nonfiction)I read 22 pages (2 chapters) of Maid (you can follow my reading progress on my Goodreads account as well.) I’ve had this book on my shelf for a while, and multiple people have recommended that I read it. So far it’s heartbreaking and very readable. I love memoirs. But, because the point is to learn something fact-based (not anecdotal), I also read an article on Wikipedia about the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum, which is what I found when I Googled “what is the opposite of an ice age?” My brain hurt after trying to decipher and comprehend all the scientific jargon.
MusicToday I began practicing “Ain’t No Sunshine” (Bill Withers) on my electric bass. It took all of fifteen minutes before my fingertips throbbed. For the record, I don’t really know how to play bass. I know how to read music and guitar tablature, and I have a basic understanding of the instrument, but it is a bit like the Spanish I took in high school: I’m not fluent, I have to translate things, and it’s slow going.
Postcard PoemI really struggled to actually write a poem, because I feel like I forgot how. My postcard today is for my friend Abby, an actual professional poet who sat next to me one day in college, and who’s been my pal ever since. She is a real badass, I’ll have to tell you about her sometime.

Here is the photo side of the postcard (Abby loves cats and Christmas):
Trash PickupToday I only went on one walk with Howie (Guy took him for his other walks) and I was a little surprised to fill up this big plastic bag in one trip. In fact, I could probably have picked up even more stuff, but I had an actual destination in mind. (For scale reference, the grabber is 32 inches long, and the dots on the mat are 2 inches in diameter.)

Today’s Challenges

I really wanted to start “slow” (ha) and give myself plenty of time to ramp up, so the only other thing on my list today was to go to dance class. This was an easy commitment to keep, because I signed up for a series class that started two weeks ago and meets every Tuesday through the end of the month. This is the third time I’ve taken this particular series, and the second time from this instructor, a woman I credit with coaxing the dancer out of me. It’s possibly the last time I’ll be her student, maybe ever, and I cherish every moment of class time with her.

Class tonight was pretty great, and totally exhausting. Each week of this series, we explore different a different feminine archetype (Warrior, Nurturer, Wild Woman, etc.), and this week our focus was on our playful selves. Lately I have been resonating deeply with this archetype, because silliness and joyfulness just feel good in my body, and they bring the light at the end of every tunnel considerably closer. When I think back on my favorite times dancing in the studio, I think of the spontaneous dance that spawned my “Thrift Shop” performance, and I think of the time I danced to “All About That Bass” and stripped off 6 different pairs of pants and shorts, and I think of the time I crawled along the line of women watching me dance and got myself a spank train. These things make me laugh and invigorate me, and I feel connected to the community of dancers around me, and I love it all!

It’s hard to describe how important my dance studio is to me, and how essential the women I meet there are to my life. I have said before that the community has saved my life, because in my bleakest times, I can always find some light and warmth at Divine. When I step inside the doors, I stumble into a magical world where everyone loves me, and they are all gorgeous and amazing humans, and I daze around, wondering at my outrageous good fortune. It’s the most healing space I know, filled with an energy that buoys and invigorates me, where I can be authentic and vulnerable, and I am safe and supported and held for no reason other than: I am me. It is a dream, and it is my real life.

Anyway, so that’s Day One. On to the next!

[Side note: if you’re curious about Divine Movement, let me know. You don’t need to be “a dancer” or have any prior experience at anything, really (I took ballet when I was four, but that’s pretty much it.) It’s an incredibly welcoming space, and that includes you!]


  1. Ladafi says:

    Congrats on a successful day one. 🙂

    1. Keep Right says:

      Thanks! I’m pretty tired already here on Day Two, so here’s hoping I can maintain this momentum!

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