Challenge Day Seventeen

Today did not go according to plan.

Well, it did and it didn’t. If you consider my project, I didn’t check off all my to-do items. But if you consider my life vision, I made some headway. Let me be less opaque: instead of getting all my challenges done, I took steps to become an ambassador at Divine, which means I will emphasize all the things that are amazing about the community (which I already do) and work for a couple of hours a week at the studio, in exchange for studio credit. While earning money for dance classes is handy, I’m more interested in just being able to spend more time in the space I love, and take care of it and the women who share it with me. This is all part of a long-term goal.

The down side is, because the schedule got set at the last minute, I ended up being at the studio tonight until almost 11:00, and then I drove a classmate home, which got me home close to midnight, and let me tell you, friends, there is not a lot of motivation to be found, even for me, at that time of night, after a long and exhausting day. I’m only human, and this project has already pushed me to some limits. So let’s all take a look together at what had to give today so I could prioritize my dance life….

Daily Challenges

Intimate Time
CookingToday’s Menu: I started with peanut butter and banana toast again; Guy whipped up some sweet potato and black bean tacos for lunch; the day was going JUST FINE until I found myself driving home at 11:30 and veering into a fast food drive thru to order chicken nuggets and fries, because I couldn’t resist the craving for something deep fried. (I’m actually pretty impressed that this didn’t happen sooner in the month; fried food featured pretty heavily in our diet prior to this, and I have an aversion to change and very little willpower.)
Reading (Poetry)Boy in a Stolen Evening Gown” by Saeed Jones is a compact tongue-twister of imagery that paints a life led by someone who does drag. I get the feeling of glamor, but also wistfulness, a desperate need to be wanted. There are confidence and security both woven into the poem, and you should go read it.
Reading (Fiction)Yesterday I alluded to something happening in The Poisonwood Bible that I didn’t expect, but it turns out that I was just not comprehending my reading very well, and I was wrong about what happened. I got very confused, and then went back and reread part of a chapter, and realized my mistake. So, never mind about the thing, but dang that would have been cool if the thing I thought were true. (I don’t want to talk about it and give away spoilers to those who haven’t read it yet.)
Reading (Nonfiction)I think everyone who didn’t grow up poor and/or houseless should read Maid to have a greater understanding of the realities of life for poor and houseless people. It’s pretty devastating to think that a lot of people live their entire lives fighting to be served by a system that is supposed to exist to serve them. But then, who am I kidding? This is capitalist America, baby! If they really wanted to not be poor, they’d grab those bootstraps!
MusicGuy finally set up the electric piano today, and I sat down to play whatever my fingers remembered from 25 years ago. (It’s mostly just the right hand of one of the Bach inventions, I can’t remember which.) Honestly I’m amazed at how the muscles in my hand retained those patterns after all this time. It made me want to play more. Now I need to grab some of my old sheet music from the piano bench at my stepdad’s house next time I’m there. Or maybe it’s under our house, in which case I’ll get to that sometime in the next 2 months, whenever I finally decide to break out the Christmas decorations.
Postcard Poem Today’s postcard really has nothing to do with today’s poem:

Haiku are really fun to write on postcards, because they don’t take up too much space, they can be funny or poignant, they can be silly or thought-provoking, and the time spent is naturally limited by the restriction of 17 syllables. I read the section in Thirteen Ways of Looking for a Poem about haiku and tanga (which are like a cross between haiku and limericks, in that they have haiku-like themes and simplicity, with five lines like a limerick instead of three, and 12 additional syllables). I wrote this pair of haiku while thinking about a friend from yesteryear (middle school) who is now working toward a doctorate, and struggling to maintain momentum. I hope these resonate:

graduate school
climbing to the top
of a deserted tower
to be its regent
wandering through books
looking for any clearing
to plant your own seed
– Sarah Reebs, 10/17/2019
Trash PickupAfter meeting with the dance studio manager midday, I walked over to Stoneway Hardware to get some gloves and a box cutter for working at the food bank. On my way, I filled up a bag with litter, and also picked up whatever this piece of car (?) is that I found in a crosswalk:

Today’s Challenges

Dance class, dance class, dance class! Do I ever shut up about it? I suppose I made it a challenge for 3/7 of the month, so it follows that I would talk about it roughly half the time. Also I love it, so why would I keep that to myself? Class was awesome, which I was about to say is typical, but I have actually had a lot of classes that were tough, or that I wasn’t connecting, or where I felt so physically sapped that I couldn’t enjoy movement. So, class tonight was a welcome dose of loveliness that I will file away in my memories for those days I’m not so into it.

The one thing I regret not getting to was my Thursday Thing, or belated NaNoWriMo prep. I had been planning (this morning) to ride my dance class high into an hour or so of furious scribbling, but of course, plans changed. My intentions, as of now, are to spend at least an hour tomorrow writing fiction, because I really do want to keep the wheels turning, and give myself a good start for November. We’ll see how the universe feels about those plans.

As of the writing of this blog, I have not done all of my abs challenge, so it’s looking like not only will I not complete that challenge, but I’m missing two days in a row, which I wanted to avoid. Do I give myself a half a checkmark for doing part of the challenge while I was at dance class, or do I tack yet another day onto the end of my 14- (or 17-)day window? I’ll let you know for sure tomorrow, after I sleep and recharge this (currently) useless brain. Goodnight!