A year in a word

When I hit publish for the first time on October 25, 2009, I had no idea what I was doing. I only knew that I wanted to write again and a blog felt right. I wrote randomly, wandering aimlessly through the blogosphere until December, when my friend Emma introduced me to Gwen Bell and her #best09 challenge. While I didn’t manage to write daily that month, I had suddenly, amazingly, found community. I met some of the most inspiring, graceful, lovely women I have ever known, many of whom have been a life line to me these last months. And if I ever get my act together there will be a list of them here so I can share them with the world.

Today, all of a sudden, was December 1 and it occurred to me that Gwen might be working her magic again. With the move and travel I haven’t had a chance to read what anyone else is writing about, or I would have already known that #reverb10 was a go and all my faves are back on board. If you are a blogger I invite you to jump in. If not, then I hope you enjoy what the prompts make manifest here.


Today’s prompt:

December 1 One Word.
Encapsulate the year 2010 in one word. Explain why you’re choosing that word. Now, imagine it’s one year from today, what would you like the word to be that captures 2011 for you? (via @gwenbell)

Since the moment I read this, words have been swirling in my brain. Words like grief, shock, broken, lessons, open, love, brutal, loss, gifts, acceptance. I’ve been spinning, trying to find one word that makes sense, that captures what this hardest of years has been. Desperately searching now that everyone else is asleep and I have a moment to myself, I looked back at what I wrote as 2009 moved into 2010 and was struck by this paragraph:


Allow all of it. Allow giving. Allow receiving. Allow the muses to sing. Allow Spirit to flow through me. Allow the questions and the uncertainty. Allow the letting go. Allow forgiveness. Allow love. Allow passion. Allow life to be what it is.

Did I manage this? At times, yes, beautifully. I fought like hell at others. Some days I’m still fighting – the fear, the uncertainty, the wanting things to be different now. I’m working on it, on the allowing – on allowing life to be what it is.


That is my word. That is what I’ve been living these past 11 months. Full of joy, love, anger, grief, hope, tears, hard lessons, big gifts – all of it. It was, simply, life.

And as I rocket myself forward through time in my mind’s eye, looking back at the year that is to come, the word that I see, the word I wish for, is ease.

And you? What’s your wish? Can you narrow it down to one word?

This entry was posted in Life After Benjamin. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to A year in a word

  1. allow. yes, i can see that as a one-word description of 2010. you have allowed all of it, as you say, and you’ve allowed us to share and support and stand by just in case. ease. that’s what i wish for you next year, too. happy anniversary, sugar. we met via best09, and i can never say thank you enough. xo

  2. Jessica M. says:

    Hmm I think my wish word would be HOPE for 2011 as for this year all I can think of are negative words currently FAILURE comes to mind. (((hugs)))

  3. Pingback: 11 things | Life After Benjamin

  4. Pingback: 23 weeks | Life After Benjamin

  5. Pingback: Words | Life After Benjamin

  6. Pingback: Easy | Life After Benjamin

Leave a Reply to wholly jeanne Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *