The Stories I Tell ~ from The Word Cellar

Stories. Anecdotes. A free round of words for everyone!

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I love stories. I'm the one at social functions with a dozen new anecdotes. But I worry about hogging the conversation. Sometimes I tell myself that I'll be quiet and let others do the talking. But no matter how hard I try, my stories insist on bursting out! Here I can let my stories (the classics that I tell again and again, as well as new ones that unfold along the way) run free. I'm a professional writer and editor, and sole proprietor of The Word Cellar. I write for a variety of publications and clients on everything from green buildings and nuclear reactors to entrepreneurship and the arts. If you need words written, edited, or enlivened, I can help. Contact me.


2008: A Mondo Beyondo Prospective

sky, summer 2007

Because a look backward is only half the story...

In the middle of 2006, the word "Pentecost" became my theme word. You can read how in this post, but here's an excerpt about why that word resonated with me:

Pentecost marks the day when the Holy Spirit descended on Christ's
followers, after his ascension.

Acts 2:1-4 says, "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."

This image of rushing wind and tongues of fire. And the ability to speak in new tongues. It's so powerful. Those people must have felt that their souls had been scrubbed clean and empowered. They must have felt so alive.

I long for a Pentecost of my own. I feel so flat inside.

Be careful what you long for. My own personal Pentecost did indeed come, scrubbing my spirit clean and empowering me. Rushes of wind and tongues of fire turned my world upside down and left me breathless, all the way through 2007. I gained the ability to speak in new tongues. I learned the language of self-kindness and self-forgiveness; of living without crippling fear or constant dread. I allowed myself to speak on the page, and even started to listen to a new language of images. My personal Pentecost was exhilarating, exhausting, painful, and healing.

Now I live in a post-Pentecostal world. I can no longer go back to the old ways of living in fear, jealousy, hurt, and denial. I've been visited by the proverbial Spirit and been made new.

So what is my theme for 2008? I've settled on a group of words that are very similar, but with distinct differences.

2008 is my year of:

  • Opportunity

  • Abundance

  • Prosperity

  • Plenty

  • Creation

I’m tired of being so afraid of failure that I berate, belittle, and limit myself. This year I’m going to change the list of things that I should do into a list of opportunities that I have. (For more on shaking the shoulds, see this.)

**Instead of stressing out about how I should grow my business and make more money, I will focus on the amazing opportunity to pursue my passion and create income doing what I love.

**Instead of feeling guilty and embarrassed because I should lose weight, I will seize the opportunity to keep my body in good working order and to stay healthy as I age.

**Instead of feeling jealous and diminished when I see what other people have accomplished, I will remember that each person has her own opportunities. Just as someone else’s opportunities aren't meant for me, mine are not meant for her. All I can do is pursue my own opportunities.

In 2008, I will continue to live intentionally.

    • I intend to seek, pursue, and embrace opportunities in my business and creative life.

    • I intend to be happy for others’ successes, knowing that there is plenty of goodness and blessings to go around.

    • I intend to spend more concentrated time working on my writing, editing, and coaching business.

    • I intend to send at least one article query to at least one magazine per month.

    • I intend to love my body and to treat it to fun exercise activities and healthy/yummy foods.

    • I intend to spend my free time reading, creating, and doing things that feed my soul.

    • I intend to continue living a life full of joy and wonder.

There's a place beyond intentions; a place that feels like the wide open sea or the starry night sky. It's wild and beautiful, and it stretches for as far as you can see; far beyond your field of vision. Perhaps even beyond your imagination. You know that it is immense, and the immensity awes you so that you feel both tiny and huge. It's just too enormous to understand. This is the world of Mondo Beyondo dreams. So you look at what you can see--the waves breaking on the shore or the stars shining up above-- and you choose to believe that there is more than you can imagine. You can't see it, but you believe it. You can't see how your dreams could possibly come true, but you choose to believe that they will.

My Mondo Beyondo:

    • I want to write and publish my first book.

    • I want to start creating mixed media art and find my own path as a visual artist.

    • I want to be debt-free and financially secure.

    • I want my family to be debt-free and financially secure.

    • I want to travel to the U.K. and Italy with James.

    • I want to travel to Iceland, to a land of people who believe in elves.

    • I want to travel to Ireland with my parents, brother, and husband.

    • I want to develop and nurture deep, supportive relationships with people in my immediate and far-flung communities.

    • I want to uncover and be at peace with my decision about having a child.

    • I want to find, buy (or build) and live in our dream cottage near the beach.

    • I want to spend a week at a writers’ retreat somewhere beautiful, comfortable, and nurturing.

Some of these feel within my reach, while a few feel impossible. But I'm choosing to dream and believe big.

What are you intentions for 2008? What's beyond those intentions?

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add to kirtsy | 7:30 PM


Blogger Pink Shoes said...

This is lovely, and I share some of these wants and intentions. Cheers to 2008!

1/26/2008 9:32 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Wow! What a list!!!

I love the analogy of the Holy Spirit you used here. Very powerful imagery.

It's amazing to me that we have so many similar issues at hand. I honor your bravery in posting your truths, wishes, laments, aspirations in this forum.

I'm thinking a road trip to Pennsylvania might be in my future. We simply MUST commiserate together in person!

My song Rx for you today is:
Bonnie Raitt's "I Will Not Be Broken".

Soak it in and shout it out loud, my dear Jenn.

1/27/2008 9:42 AM  
Blogger bella said...

What a rich and full life you are creating for yourself.
It inspires.

1/29/2008 11:11 AM  
Blogger Kari & Kijsa said...

What a wonderful, wonderful are a truly gifted writer! Thank you for entering our give-away!

Have a blessed day...

kari & kijsa

1/30/2008 12:40 AM  
Blogger Lulu said...

I happened on your blog following giveaway links here and there. What a serendipitous find! Your word list to define your aspirations and hopes for 2008 is, in itself, inspiring. I look forward to future visits here.

2/01/2008 1:31 PM  
Anonymous linni said...

This is alive and there and shouting out to be lived! xx

2/11/2008 7:25 AM  

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