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Each week I write these VPAs to practice asking for what I want. And to get clarity on what that really is, even when asking feels conflicted.

I always get useful information about my relationship with various aspects of the ask. Join in if you like!

VPAs are late this week because I spent the last three days in intense preparation for Rally (Rally!).

Asking, asking, asking. Many wants, in small forms.

Thing 1: Potter wants a hat.

Here’s what I want:

Potter is my mouse (not a real mouse). He is adorable. And maybe four inches tall?

He doesn’t talk very much but when he finally told me his name, he said that he wanted a hat.

It can be a newsies sort of hat or a cap with a feather in it. He feels strongly about this.

Ways this could work:

I have not even the slightest idea.

I’ll play with…

Sitting with him and listening. Then listening some more.

I like it when he talks to me.

Thing 2: ease-filled sovereign announcing.

Here’s what I want:

I need to announce a thing and I need it to happen in a clear, loving sovereign way.

This is a no that is a loving gift.

Ways this could work:

I will have another spectacular shivanautical epiphany and the words will be there.

I’ll play with…

Presence. Perseverance. Pleasure. Possibility. Provision.

Other things that start with P.

Thing 3: oh dear lord a break from this over HSP nightmare.

Here’s what I want:

I have Highly Sensitive Person tendencies all the time, yes, but when premenstrual, certain types of noise drive me absolutely batty.

Right now the handyman is loudly fixing stuff on the Playground roof, the people next door are hammering, there are leaf blowers, and I am this close to having to go up to the roof and hurl people off of it.

I want relief from this immediately.

Ways this could work:

The peacefulness meditation.

Asking the First Mate to call the handyman.

Things could just shift. I could find something useful about this superpower of hypersensitivity. I could find my way back to being a magical unicorn pony again.

I’ll play with…

No advice, please.

But I will use my headphones and next year I will not schedule any teaching to happen while I am anywhere near this state, and also I will abscond to the quietest chrysalis ever.

Thing 4: many small plumlets.

Here’s what I want:

The PLUM is the Playground User Manual.

I need a mini quickstart version of this.

One for Rally, one for Stompopolis, one for communication stuff. One for what I mean when I say that we are on a retreat from care-taking and advice-giving here.

Ways this could work:

Maybe my Rally project will be related to this.

I’ll play with…

Wanting what I want.

Using the shared pool of knowledge concept from the Crucial Conversations book.

Thing 5: [Boston/Astoria]

Here’s what I want:

This is kind of a proxy and kind of not at all a proxy.

I will silent retreat on the details.

It has to do with moths and brackets, but these are also substitutions for substitutions.

It has to do with lusciousness, courage and possibility.

Ways this could work:

One day this week I will wake up and I will know the who, what, when, where, how and why.

Well, maybe not the why. But I’ll settle for the first five.

I’ll play with…

Desire. Deconstruction. Glow-sitting (morning meditation).

Thing 6: passage for Incoming Me.

Here’s what I want:

Incoming Me and I have an understanding.

But we need some quality time together to hash some things out.

I want a certain thing to happen. She knows about doing things that she enjoys and in ways that she enjoys them. I think we need to connect more.

Also she thinks this will help me have an understanding about the HAT. Not Potter’s hat, but a Havi Announces a Thing HAT.

Ways this could work:

Not sure yet.

I’ll play with…


Thing 7: working through sadness.

Here’s what I want:

I am feeling sad about two things that didn’t happen this week that I really wanted to happen.

I would like to do something with this well of sadness.

Ways this could work:

The usual destuckification stuff. Processing the process. Skipping some stones. Inventing rituals. Giving myself room to have the sad.

I bet the Floop will help too.

I’ll play with…

Legitimacy and permission.

Progress report on past Very Personal Ads.

Just to update you on what’s happened since last time.

I needed a perfect simple solution to a situation that was reconfiguring, and while it is not resolved yet, it is going more smoothly.

Then I wanted clews for the Room of Mystery! And some of you sent clews! Thank you. Yay, clews! More are welcome too.

I wanted courage and I got it. Just in time too.

There was an ask about progress on a seemingly impossible thing, and there are signs.

I wanted a mini-chrysalis before Rally and that did not happen, which is actually a third thing that I am feeling sad about. So I am going to process that because it is interesting. Why do I not give myself what I need? Aha, because I have rules about what trumps what. I will do some madcap Shiva Nata on that.

Play-filled comment zen. Here’s what I’d love today.

  • Wanted: Your own personal ads, small or large. Updates on past ones if you like.
  • You can also do these on your own or in your head. You can always call silent retreat!
  • Leave your gwishes! Throw things in the pot!
  • Things we try to keep away from: the word “manifest”, telling people how they should be asking for things, unsolicited advice.
  • VPA amnesty applies, of course. Leave yours any time between now and next Sunday (or whenever, really) — it’s all fine by us!


The Fluent Self