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“I want! I want!”

April 29, 2011

I’ll tell you what I want, what I really really want,
So tell me what you want, what you really really want…

My entire existence these days has been consumed by this one penetrating question: What do I want? 

It is always an important question.  In fact, I want to ask myself what I want every day.  Maybe even multiple times throughout the day.  I think I sometimes avoid the question, because knowing what you want requires you to either follow through or let yourself down.  That can be a scary ultimatum.  BUT it’s worth it.  How can you get what you want if you aren’t first clear on what that is?  Nothing will allow you find your power to construct majestic happiness more than answering this question and continuing to answer it as you go along.

The nice thing about life is that it doesn’t let you dodge the tough questions forever.  There are times when you can get away with coasting, but then there are the inevitable forks in the road, the tumbleweed crossroads with nothing but the question and empty space for your answer.  What do you want?  Where do you picture your life going?

The “how do you get there” question is important for follow-through, as is courage, but I have found that many courageous people are still trapped and stuck, standing there holding on to their well-intentioned desire to follow through but unable to set it into motion because they don’t actually know what they want.  We try to figure out the “how” (plan of action) before we know the “what” (our ultimate desires), and although the two work together, that sequence is a bit backwards.  The trickiest part for me is realizing that I sometimes have to act on whatever clarity I have about my desires, even without a perfect linear plan, if only to stir things up and find more clarity when the dust settles.

I’m just another one of those courageous people trying to become unstuck.  And it is finally happening.

Responses from grad schools were the catalyst.  I had laid down a wild card when I submitted all of my applications, especially because in artistic fields there is no concrete measure by which to gauge your likelihood for success or failure.  It really is a blind leap off of a cliff with unknown terrain below, and once you leap the only thing in your control is how you deal with what comes at you.  It was fascinating to notice my reactions!  I didn’t realize how global my response would be.

Fielding rejection letters, constantly refocusing my image of the future, and then choosing between two very different programs put everything else in my life into question.  Where do I want to live?  How do I want to live?  Who do I want in my life with me?   How can I best take care of myself?  What habits do I want to break?  What habits do I want to initiate?  How independent do I want to be?  What job-world do I want to open up before me once I graduate?  EVERYTHING was suddenly up in the air.  I realized that nothing in my life was fixed.  Everything is a choice.  Everything.  Realizing that is powerful.  Scary, but completely empowering.

I have a responsibility to my own desires. 

What do I really really want?  I want to remain flexible, I want to remember that nothing is permanent or fixed, that I am choosing all of the realities I previously mistook as givens.  I want to be more independent.  I want to live on my own for the first time in my life.  I want to live near SFSU and have a legitimate kitchen where I can cook all of the beautiful healthy recipes I have been eying and collecting.  I want to throw myself into my creative writing classes at SFSU while also taking Graphic Design courses at UC Berkeley Extension’s SF campus.  I want to meditate regularly and give myself bi-weekly manicures.  I want to immerse myself into projects.  I want to swim.  I want to listen to more music and watch less TV.  I want to grow my own basil and not let it die.  I want to keep my heart open to Sam, who has opened his heart to me and who remains incredibly flexible as I navigate these times of change.

I want to remember that I can make it all happen.

❤ Diana Banana

image courtesy of

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