It bothers me that every time I go to write, “I” is the main word that wants to go first.
“I went to the store this evening…”
“I have no idea how I find myself listening to the most random songs…”
“I saw a girl dancing in the parking lot tonight…”
This book, The Artist’s Way, talks about making a habit of writing three handwritten pages every morning. The author calls the exercise “the morning pages”. For a while I was doing it in the early early morning, and my one rule for writing was “You cannot start the morning pages with “I””. It was very hard to do and it still is.
The point of the morning pages is to get your other thoughts out of the way. You’re supposed to write whatever comes to mind. There were several things that came out that surprised me, and one time I wrote twelve front and back pages. It turned out to be the most restorative writing session in several years. It felt incomplete when I stopped, like there was so much more that could’ve been said, and yet, there was peace at the end.
I saw a girl dancing in the parking lot tonight. I’d just pulled into the parking lot, and was about to pull the keys out of the ignition, when Madonna’s song “Holiday” came on the radio. It was like I was literally being pulled out of my van by an outside force. I thought to myself, “THIS! Why don’t I exercise like THIS every day??? There would be no dread, no excuses, no regret for neglect. I would never know anything other than joy.”
That very moment, a young girl somewhere around the age of eighteen or nineteen, came spinning into view as she danced across the parking lot to her boyfriend’s car. I’m assuming it was a boyfriend, for she looked to young and too new to be married. They seemed as though they were swift and in a hurry, thought that was, on second thought, their everyday speed. He was happy. She was happy. I was happy watching them.