I AM A WRITER…
Those were the first words I scratched out in my journal in 2007 when I decided to create my first “Word of the year.” Though I had been writing words since my fingers could clutch a pen and though I had typed out my first novel in 8th grade and proudly shoved it in my sock drawer, and though I was the proud owner of a book of chicken-scratch poetry… 2007 was the first year that anyone had ever looked me in the eye with utter contempt and said with a voice filled with disdain, “I thought you said you could write. You can’t.”
That man’s single sentence rocked my core. It filled me with doubt and threatened to shatter who I believed I was.
But not for long. I grabbed my pen, clutched it in my fist and scrawled out the words, I AM A WRITER!!! defiantly in my journal. It wasn’t even January, it was July. I had never even heard of doing a “Word of the Year.” That year the word grabbed me like a life raft, clinging to me, refusing to let go, not allowing me to give up on the ONE thing I had known about myself since I could think and form a sentence.
The word WRITER nurtured me. It whispered to me in moments when the MAN’s hurtful words tried to seep back into my soul. It built a moat around my spirit and denied him entrance. “She is a writer” the word would say, whenever the voices in my head would jeer and try to suggest that maybe he was right.
It was 2008 before my confidence was strong enough to dare to write again. In February, the WRITER in me took a bold step and started a blog, not only writing, but proclaiming that writing to an invisible audience somewhere out there in the ether. Life’s Little Inspirations was born, yes… partially to proclaim to anyone that would listen, that I write.
I chose a new word to stand next to WRITER. A word that stretched and expanded me, gave me room to share a belief that writing is art. I am an ARTIST became my word for 2008. As the year progressed, I discovered that my art wasn’t only my writing, it was the way I viewed the world. It was in the way I took photographs, the way I made dinner for my family, in the flowers I planted in the garden, in the way I directed theater or worked with clients. It was a way of living life. I was waking up to the idea that art and creativity flowed through me as an expression in everything I do.
With that thought in mind, it was a natural progression to add the next stone to the growing foundation strengthening my soul.
Wide Awake became the next word in my Journey in 2009.
Had anyone warned me what a powerful commitment it was to live wide awake, I might have been too frightened to choose it. But, blissfully ignorant of what it meant to live wide awake, I plundered in to the most emotional, vibrationally-charged year of my life. It was like being thrown into a technicolor kaleidoscope without warning. Emotions I hadn’t felt for years bubbled to the surface and demanded to be witnessed. Stories that had been repressed played out as visions across the movie screen of my mind, demanding to be uncovered. I was both archaeologist and bewildered recipient as one after another aspect of my being came to life and I met myself at the doorway to my Soul. I cried. I shouted. I was angry. I laughed. Sometimes maniacally. I loved-deeply and marveled at it. And feared it.
To live wide awake is to live vulnerably and raw. It was both the scariest and most exhilarating word I could have ever chosen. And it changed my life.
As each year passed, I knew that I couldn’t give up any of these words. They weren’t meant to be tossed aside in exchange for a new one. These powerful words are the foundation base of who I AM. Not who I am becoming… but who I am uncovering.
By the end of 2009, I knew that Wide Awake was not done with me yet, and I suspected (and rightly so) that I had unleashed a life-long word into my spirit, one that had changed the course of my destiny.
I wanted a word that would help me bring this new understanding to others. LIVING INSPIRED was the perfect word message in 2010 to remind myself that the best way to inspire others is to live an inspired life. The translation of living inspired was literally, “To Breathe in Life” a perfect stepping stone to a wide awake life.
When you are a writer and an artist, who is living wide awake and living inspired, literally breathing in life, you find that you have naturally tumbled into a life filled with PASSION, a life that is exciting, bright, illuminating, God-filled and visionary and 2011 was that year, which tumbled right into 2012’s year of being UNSTOPPABLE as Deb and I wrote and published one of our novels, wrote the second one, grew our business, networked with an amazing group of women and life’s vision moved into crystal clear focus.
And, with all of that in place, 2013 radiated a VIBRANT joy and celebration that touched everything and everyone we met. We started a rebranding of the Blue Sun Studio Vision that we will unveil more of this year to come. We began our Journey to the Center of your Heart workshops to help other women take this journey to the center of their spirit and heart—hopefully not alone, and without so many of the bumpy roads I crossed along the way!
This year’s word planted itself last year as a seed in my heart during meditation. In the gap between consciousness and the infinite power of God, I experienced a blossoming of this word, day after day, my understanding of this word growing like a flower, petal by petal unfurling in my soul.
There was no other word that would even consider me. This word has consumed me, it has chiseled away the clay that had hardened my heart and exposed the raw beauty of itself.
My word of 2014: Love.
Like Wide Awake, I expect this word to take me on a powerful journey, radical and shattering, eye-opening and humbling.
This time, I am strapped in and ready for the ride of my life.
Denise Banks-Grasedyck says
You are indeed a writer, an Artist and an Inspiration to me! I sit pondering my “word of the year!”
Pamela Wills says
The word is truly the thing! I am amazed that you started picking words annually ~ or letting words pick you, it seems. I only discovered this concept less than two years ago. Last year, for 2013 I decided my theme would be “Love Your Self” and WOW! That was powerful! I am a completely changed woman on the inside and it totally shows on the outside. For 2014, I decided I need to step into bigger shoes so I came up with a phrase that’s like a mini movie: I’m going to Ride the Wild Horses and Let My Creative Spirit Roam Free! Flying is definitely implied. Staying in the saddle even when my horse starts to gallop is absolutely on the menu! I am buckled and ready! =)
Elaine Wellman says
Wendi. I love your words and I love you! Your spirit, commitment, wisdom and talent continue to inspire me. My words this year are CHANGE and GROW. Can’t wait to see what it brings. And as you explained to me, once I have the theme for the year, I never let it go and continue to embody it in years to come. Such an honor calling you my friend!
Elaine Wellman\’s last post… I Cried Today: How to be an Unstoppable Entrepreneur
Jill Place says
YOU ARE A WRITER! Your words always inspire me. AND I AM WRITER TOO! I was writing my acting blog yesterday and suddenly remembered I had won a writing contest when I was 12 or 13. I had suppressed the experience because my teacher gave it back to me, stating that I couldn’t have written this . . . that it was WAY too advanced. Surprisingly, my mother backed up the teacher, not me. I think it was the major rift in our relationship. And I’ve never realized that until now. I am so grateful for your writing. It not only inspires me . . . it makes me realize things I never knew. That’s MAJOR!
Aly Pain says
The power of claiming the I AM is so incredible, often underestimated and vastly under utilized. Good for you for claiming your ‘I AM’ in the face of negative feedback, someone who could not see through their own poop to your greatness. If everyone would be so courageous and declare the ‘I AM’ longing in their hearts our world would be a very different place. Thanks for leading the way.
Jennifer Bourn says
Wendi – Thank you for sharing your “Word Journey” with us! I love how you have made the m your mantra and LIVED them … My word for 2014 is BELIEF. belief that I can. Belief that I will. Belief that I am.
Love, love your writing, your evolving, your vulnerability and strength.
You truly are an inspiration, and your work is adding much light to our world.
I’m so glad to know you and to work with you off and on…you rock!
May your path of LOVE added onto your word cairn be another amazing year in the books for you!!