Adele is singing about California dreaming and memories of who she used to be and I am sitting at the computer wondering about her writing process and whether it is all based upon experience or imagination.
Thinking about how some people have suggested I live in the past and how I have laughed because they have based their thoughts upon the few posts they have read.
I’ll concede there are plenty of stories about what life was like and tales about who I was or what I used to be able to do.
If that is all the insight you have then I can see how you might wonder if maybe my eyes are always looking backwards but it is not who I am or what I am about.
A Man of Faith looks backwards for the purpose of trying to determine if a course correction is needed or warranted.
Otherwise the focus is forward because life is not about who we used to be, but who we are now and who we hope to become.
“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.”
― William Wordsworth
― William Wordsworth
The music has moved to Chicago, something about a man selling ice cream singing Italian songs and I am smiling because this is my Saturday in the park.
The picture at the top of the page has me entranced, it reminds me that the person I want to be is one who has the resources to spend time writing at the beach and in the mountains.
The person I want to become is the guy who continues to take chances and works on pushing the envelope to make things happen.
That is the kind of role model I want to be for my kids.
And it is tied into the kind of writer I want to be too. The kind of isn’t afraid to fill parts of the pages with fragments of what rolls around inside the melon, the good and the bad.
That approach doesn’t fit with some of the expert opinion I have read recently that maintains you need to focus on your readers first because they are the most important people that visit your blog.
They can have it, it is not for me.
It Connects The Generations
I sold my car.
Technically I haven’t signed the paperwork that will relieve me of ownership but I am committed to doing so.
It is time and I don’t have any regrets about moving from into something new, fact is I have wanted to do this for years but it just didn’t happen.
But that doesn’t mean I am not aware that this is the last vehicle I owned before I became a father.
Don’t know if that is truly significant any more than saying it is the last car I drove my grandparents in or that it has been a constant in the lives of my childen.
It is just a bunch of steel, cloth and miscellaneous parts.
The car is a thing and the only reason it has any significance at all is because of the memories that are attached to it and the echoes of the past.
Some of those echoes reach into the present and a few might even reach into the future.
But we won’t know if they go all the way or part until we engage life and walk with it down the road.
Won’t know if they are things that help propel us forward or hold us back until we try taking those steps.
So I say goodbye to the car with a mix of emotions, a touch of bittersweet something or other but mostly gratitude.
It was the first car my kids rode in, the one that took them from the hospital to home. The vehicle that took them to preschool and the schools beyond.
The car that helped me go to and from work so that I could provide for the family and when the world went to Hell sometimes it served as a quiet refuge.
If it could tell a tale it would have many.
We had more than a few adventures in it, ask it to speak about the road to and from Texas and all that happened in between.
An ordinary car made extraordinary by the memories that are attached to it.
Kill Your Darlings
Somewhere in his book about how to become a better writer Stephen King encourages us to kill our darlings.
He tells us not to become so enamored with our words we fail to do things to make our work stronger.
Tighten your paragraphs by eliminating non-essential words and improve your writing by showing and not telling.
I hear his voice in my head and see a dozen places where I can improve this post. Chunks that can be eliminated and assorted means to do stuff that will help more people engage and remain so here.
But at the same time my gut says do your thing, take a risk, try, don’t fear to fall because you might fly.
The point is not to ignore the wisdom of someone who has had tremendous success but to be willing to mix and match to find a formula that works for me.
That is what a writer has to do.
That is what a parent has to do, figure out how to teach, advise and guide each child in a way that resonates with them.
In short it is really what we all share in common, the need to be willing to walk in light or darkness without fear of falling.
Make your mistakes and learn from them.
That is where we learn how to grow and be more.
It is not about who we used to be, but who we want to become.