Monday, December 13, 2010

Prompts 3, 4, 5

Reverb10 #3-5 after the jump...

PROMPT 3: Moment. Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year. Describe it in vivid detail (texture, smells, voices, noises, colors). (Author: Ali Edwards)

This one has been very difficult for me to choose because there have been so many moments during 2010 when I felt extremely alive. One of the major ones was during my time flying to Cape Town in March. I had been anxious about the flights for the days leading up to it, but when the time came and I was actually on the flights, excitement took over. 

I took a small plane from my home airport up to Detroit to catch my first international flight. The next 8.5 hours were very long, and very dark, as we flew over the Atlantic Ocean. Thankfully, the flight was smooth, or I would have probably freaked out a bit since it was my first transatlantic flight and I was taking it alone. We arrived at Schiphol airport in Amsterdam around 7am, safe and sound. I had about and hour to wander around the airport and experience the similarities and differences before boarding the next plane.

From Amsterdam, I took a KLM flight down to Cape Town. This was the most nerve-racking flight of the trip. It took place [mostly] during daylight hours, so I was able to see Europe and Africa as we passed overtop of them, which made me want even more to be able to go back and visit all those places one day. However, this flight had the most turbulence of any of them, and even though I had been able to doze on and off while on the plane, I was getting pretty exhausted because I had traveled over a full day at that point. In addition to that, I had the uncertainty of what would happen when I got off the plane--if the person who was supposed to meet me would actually be there, and if we'd get along, and how the trip would go, as well as if I would enjoy this new place I was about to experience. It ended up being an 11.5 hour flight of anticipation and excitement as well as a bit of uncertainty. So many emotions were present all at once. Nearing the end of the flight, I was able to experience my first African sunset from the plane. It was all that I had heard it would be, and more. Absolutely breathtaking colours filling the sky, and lasting for what seemed like forever. In that moment, I was able to shove my fears aside and look forward to the two weeks I had ahead of me and everything the trip would bring.

PROMPT 4: Wonder. How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year? (Author: Jeffrey Davis)

This has actually been a major goal of mine for the past few months. It occurred to me one day around the end of the summer, how much we just block out. It's not even intentional. We just get so accustomed to seeing the same things every day, that we never even notice them anymore. I've been trying to make it a point to see things as if I'm seeing them for the first time. It has definitely taken some effort to be able to go from not really seeing things, to recognizing everything about them and to appreciating them more. This is my challenge to you, if you're reading this: Take a day, or even an hour, and try to see everything and everyone around you like it's the first time. REALLY notice the colours and the textures of objects, and how beautiful the people around you are. Since I've started making an effort to do that, I've noticed that I appreciate things more. 

PROMPT 5: Let Go. What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why? (Author: Alice Bradley)

What I let go of this year actually began in 2009, but did not really show as much until this year. All through highschool and growing up, and even during a lot of my first year at university, I was concerned with what people thought...not in a "am I popular/pretty/athletic/etc enough" kind of way, but just in general. I did not want to disappoint people, especially those close to me. I would bend over backward to help them with anything they needed. Partially this is just my personality--I love helping people. That's fine. But I realized that I needed to not worry about if I'd disappoint people, and to not be afraid to say no if they wanted something from me that I didn't feel like giving. It's been a very freeing discovery, although I've had to lose some friends along the way because of it. I'm very happy with where I am now as a result. 

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