"My face is a gift, because my shadow side is on the outside, where I have had to deal with it. Paradoxically, I have been made whole through (and with) what originally seemed to be my flaws." –David Roche
As I have traveled around the country reading from Life is a Verb, the overwhelming majority of questions I get have to do with finding the time to write, how I find the quiet to write with kids in the house, a full-time job, and the messy business of dinners to cook. "I write in a pristine white room filled only with sunlight and joy and the scent of lavender," I would answer. "The children remain very still whilst I opine." And then I would laugh and laugh and laugh at the very thought of it. I actually write in the family room on my laptop while Spongebob Squarepants sings to me, Tess jumps up and down on the other end of the couch, Mr Brilliant lectures about the history of the telescope, Emma asks about buying an old school bus so she and her friends can drive to Mexico after graduation next year, and the dog licks himself inappropriately.
My real answer? "Just 10 minutes a day," I found myself saying. "Go into the bathroom if you have to, lock the door, and stay there for just 10 minutes a day." When Emma was little, she thought I had a chronic intestinal problem, I was in the bathroom so often.
It occurs to me that much can be done in just ten minutes a day. At our recent Life is a Verb retreat, we did a ten-minute exercise, "Long Walk to China," that underscored for me the vast enormities of what can happen in just ten minutes. Vast universes can be uncovered. We can be rained on by cherry blossoms in 10 minutes. We can still ourselves in 10 minutes. We can chisel Michelle Obama arm muscles in 10 minutes. A lot of living can happen in 10 minutes.
And so, I invite you to make just 10 minutes a day. ("Make" implies action on your part, my friend). My first "Make 10" is a reflection on what beauty is by David Roche, a performer I first saw at a Very Special Arts event at the White House years ago. A compelling, funny, poignant, amazing performance. Sit with your cup of Coconut Chai tea or that happy Grande Soy Radical Free Trade Organic Latte and listen and look. Just for ten minutes, reflect on your first glance, and your second. What do you see when you look in the mirror? Absolute amazing beauty? Yes, yes.
Make 10. No one else is going to do it for you.
My thanks to Bluegirl Inaredstate who pointed me to this video.