very personal adsPersonal ads. They’re … personal!

I write a Very Personal Ad each week to practice wanting, and get clarity about my desires. The point isn’t getting my wish (though cool things have emerged from wishing), the point is learning about my relationship with what I want, and accessing the qualities. Wanting can be hard, it is easy to feel conflicted about it, and the reasons for that make this a surprisingly subversive practice…

Here we are. 322 consecutive weeks of wishing. Welcome. ♡

Something different.

I have many wishes, bubbling up and away, red balloon wishes.

Over the past few days, I have been watching and waiting, trying to feel into which one I want to write about. And what I received is that I actually want to write about how last week’s wishes have been going.

Not a two-sentence summary of last week’s wish at the end of this week’s, like I usually do. Not a separate follow-up post.

I want — and I don’t know why I want this, but I need to trust it — I want to share with you some of what I have noticed and experienced over this past week since wishing the last wishes.

And I guess through that process the new wish will emerge?

Or maybe it won’t, and for whatever reason, this is the seed-form my wishing wants to take this week. It is planting itself through this process of Noticing the Noticings, and sharing them with you.

This feels weird and new and different, but when I turn inward and ask what I want to write about, that’s what is there.

And since we just exited the month of Trust More, I am going to do just that.

I actually wrote two wishes last week…

I posted my wish about Luscious Minimalism, and I also wrote about the thing I don’t want to let go of, which is actually a wish about ease of releasing.

This is funny and perfect, because this Shmita year is the Year of Easing & Releasing, and somehow I didn’t even make the connection.

Anyway.

Both of these wishes have been my quiet accompaniment to this week, setting off chain reactions of tiny sparks of light in all the dark corners, letting me see things I couldn’t see before, helping me release things I couldn’t release before.

And this is my review of that, and the week that was. Or, as I like to call it, my Revue!

With high kicks and jazz hands, ta da!

I did very little, because I was sick.

So that was a completely unanticipated form of Luscious Minimalism right there.

I had been thinking about my wish in terms of space: the feelings and sensations I want in both my physical and emotional space. Reducing possessions, in order to revel in being surrounded by only those I absolutely cherish.

Possibly also lovingly disconnecting from other things that are not luscious: habits, patterns, people, assumptions, choices.

But I hadn’t thought in terms of doing less.

All I did this week was lounge around in bed, pet my sweet body with love and kiss it better, and write. The best.

A secret hidden meaning of Operation Luscious Minimalism was apparently “do the most minimal amount of exertion, while being luscious!” This makes me laugh.

I lounged.

I mean, I lounged in style, like I never have before.

I lit candles and wore impossibly extravagant special-occasion underthings and the fluffiest cloud of a robe — even though my lover is far away and my entire plans for this week involved sitting in bed being a Mighty Mighty Snot Machine while feeling sorry for myself.

I drank water from the fanciest wine glass, with a perfect circle slice of lemon snug against the rim, just because.

And massaged my temples with tiger balm from the prettiest jar, while listening to a playlist of songs chosen by Incoming Me for this quarter.

All in all, I did very, very little, but did it with panache. And it was sweet and beautiful and alive with meaning.

I treasured things.

Everything seemed so beautiful this week.

I picked up the pitcher from the dining room table, and marveled over it for the longest time.

The still-fragrant lavender that my friend Luke the Noir Gunslinger brought as a gift over a year ago, the luminous blue-green ceramic pitcher that I bought on New Year’s Eve from a local potter seven years ago, right after we moved into this house, not long after I wrote the wish that brought me both my beautiful home and this beautiful weekly practice of wishing.

The pitcher-lavender combination was suddenly so enthralling to me, I moved it into the kitchen where I spend more time, to enjoy it more fully.

I admired the long elegant line of a spoon. I touched the leaves of my plants, and may have even kissed them when the neighbors weren’t watching…

I glowed with love while sitting in the wooden rocking chair that my uncle went to great lengths to acquire from the other side of the country, just for me, because he wanted me to have one of his favorite things.

I let go of things.

Because anything that doesn’t give me that kind of thrill really doesn’t need to be in my space.

Marie (Kondo) says something wildly mystical that I missed in the first reading, about how the things you own want you to be happy.

More than that. They want you to feel like you are in love. So if you aren’t tingly, blissfully in love when you touch them and see them, then be kind to them and to you, and let them go make someone else that happy, or return to you with that same loving energy but in a new and better form. That’s what she says.

It’s a wondrous and terrifying thought: will I have to let go of everything? Not at all, just the things that obstruct my ability to feel the wonder of the pitcher, the magnificence of the lavender.

Marie is a greatly misunderstood Luscious Minimalist, I think. Her work isn’t actually about tidying and decluttering at all.

It is about becoming someone who glows with love, who consciously chooses to glow with love, and to let your environment support this. And it is about the deepest forms of listening.

I let go of so many things that my space transformed.

My bedroom now feels sparkly and magical, like the playground.

It hums from all the time I’ve spent luscious-ing it up in bed all week! And from all the things I let go of, with love, so that they can go love someone else.

My bedroom is purring like a happy cat right now.

And once that happened, the purr-hum spread to the hallway, and the living room, and this morning I felt it entering the kitchen too…

My uncle came to stay with me for three days.

Long-time readers of this blog know that Svevo is one of my very favorite people in the world, and the person I most admire and wish to emulate.

He is the only person I know who lives exactly how he wants, in all things, and he does this despite not having great means.

If he wants three naps between breakfast and lunch, he will do that, and be completely happy about it, and not say any of the things people usually say like “I don’t know why I’m so tired”. He just follows his body.

If you visit his home, you will not be the least surprised to find that his bed is in his living room, because he felt like that was where he would probably want to sleep.

When Svevo comes to visit, I get to study him. This time I was able to notice all the beauty — and Luscious Minimalism — in delighting in what you have.

Svevo is very into purple lately, and he was wearing a purple sweater under a dark burgundy sweater-jacket, both of which he had picked up at a thrift store and already worn holes into. And he was as happy as a small child with a new toy. The color was filling him up with joy.

Horses.

My housemate and I have been watching Wallander. The BBC series with Kenneth Branagh as the most morose detective, not the Swedish version, though I would like to see that as well.

There was a horse in the last episode, an absolutely stunning horse, and two things struck me at once:

  • Horses are so majestic and powerful and present.
  • Horses eat carrots, and if carrots are the stand-in for the thing I don’t want to let go of, I can let go by letting the horses have them.

And, something else about that. Horses can be very sweet, and also very strong, sovereign, imposing even. Horses stand in their strength, which was my wish from two weeks ago.

I want these horse-like superpowers! Actually, I think that is my wish.

Mirror.

Svevo and my wonderful cousin Noah and I went to a nearby bakery. It was my one Excursion out of the house, and I put on clothes and everything.

The bakery was very full and we had to sit at the bar area, which sits up right against a mirror, so you are looking right at yourself from only a few inches away.

I have been sick and not sleeping and being a Mighty Mighty Snot Machine, so whatever, grain of salt here, but I looked like death warmed over. And never in my entire life have I more wanted to transform my appearance to reflect my true glow.

What came into my head at the time was that all my wonderful edges have somehow gotten lost, as if I have settled for Boring Safe Pretty instead of allowing the chaotic mystery of me to be visible in my appearance. I wanted my edginess back.

But what I’m realizing now is that I want horse-essence: that kind of sleek, powerful, big presence that is beautiful because it is so very alive, so very there.

That slightly dangerous “don’t fuck with me” grace, that ease of movement, that ability to rear up in the moonlight and be intensely unpredictably alive. I want that.

And I want that in how I look, and I want that in my bedroom, and I want that in my dance, and I want that in my wishes.

There. That’s my wish.

It was here all along and I didn’t know it.

May it be so.

Anything else about this?

I love how surprised I am that wise-me was right, and that following my instinct on this post was right, when of course she was and of course it is.

Invitation.

You are invited to share many !!!!!! about my wishes and realizations here, to share anything sparked for you while reading, to say “oh wow, what beautiful wishes” to me and to each other, to wish your own wishes.

I will also take all forms of EXCITEMENT and GLADNESS for this particular wish, and also clues if you have any, or good wishes if you don’t!

Now.

I have a piece of embroidery that my mother made. I took it when her sister and I were going through her things after she died. My aunt kept trying to get me to take more things to remember her by, and I didn’t want anything except for this.

My mother would be delighted that I wanted it, and also she would kill me if she knew that I framed it. She would say that it’s a practice piece and not any good, and that if I want a framed piece, I should take this other one instead which is better, etc. I don’t care.

I love it.

It is gold and red and orange thread on a dark blue cloth background, and it is a very self-contained shape that is somehow mandala and sun and compass and labyrinth all at the same time.

It is minimal and it is luscious, and it feels protective and special, and I chose well.

The superpower of Fearless Intentional Choosing.

September - Stand in My Strength MoreAugust was TRUST MORE, with the superpower of Wildly Confident, Wonderfully Tranquil.

Now I am ready to Stand In My Strength more, and September comes in with the marvelous superpower of Fearless Intentional Choosing.

And this is what I did all week as I cherished some things through releasing them, and cherished other things through keeping them and appreciating them.

Progress report on past Very Personal Ads.

So. Last week aka Luscious Minimalism…

I am getting better at trusting that my wishes go so much deeper than I could ever imagine, that they are glowing seeds of light.

My wish was about sanctuary and about glowing, and about choosing what gets to be in my environment, in all meanings of that. I feel deeply, intensely grateful right now for this wish.

Thank you, process of writing about wishes. Thank you, me who asked.

Keep me company! Or just say hi!

You can deposit wishes, gwishes, personal ads, superpowers, qualities, seeds, secret agent code, whatever you’d like, there’s no right way! Updates on past experiments are welcome too, as is sharing anything sparked for you.

Comment culture: This is safe space for creative exploration. We are on vacation from care-taking and advice-giving. We are here to play and throw things in the pot! With amnesty. Leave a wish any time you want.

Here’s how we meet each other’s wishes: Oh, wow. What beautiful wishes.

xox