Rough Day, Cat Company & Dance

Shibumi on My Desk

Studio Diary: May 25, 2018

Some days things are just challenging and yesterday was one of those days. Everything just seemed to go off the rails! Lots of unexpected challenges reminded me that leaving space for the unexpected is wise. Now I just have to remember to do it!

On the BTS today, as I was talking about multiple project and problem wrangling, I came up with the image of corralling ducklings and this made me laugh. It’s amazing how the right metaphor can lighten everything up!

The best part of a really tough day was that Shibumi kept me company for the whole morning. This has never happened before. She slept on my desk most of the time.  I have a little pad to make it comfy for her. We played a little bit too. I put one of her balls underneath a hand drum and let her try to solve the conundrum. (Haha, I just noticed the wordplay there.)  And she curled up in the corner chair and enjoyed the sunshine. She was great company.

It’s funny that this bruiser of a cat has a gift for healing. When I imagine her in comic book form (which is incredibly easy to do), I visualize her rather ticked off that healing is her super power. “Why can’t it be combat?!!”

Dance: After a long and demanding day, I went to dance rehearsal. We’re one rehearsal away from reshuffling our spots and getting our final placements for the show. This felt like a particularly rotten time to have a bad day! I tried to relax and stay focused but still the moves were neither settling in or showing up for me. That’s okay. It’s just one rehearsal and there is still plenty of time for practice.

Before rehearsal, there’s time to go over the choreography and to enlist the help of the professional dancers. It’s amazing how each one of them brings out something fresh and different. Their unique perspective shines a light on something we hadn’t seen before.

When reviewing the choreography for one section, Jane Alison says to us with great directness, “Don’t hesitate! Change direction. Move forward. Show confidence!” Watching her dance, it’s clear this is a philosophy that informs her work. She seems to always be moving forward – no fear, no hesitation. It reads as not only as confident but also brave, maybe even reckless.

The Reno: We continue to go through our things as we prepare for the reno. This week Justin grabbed a bunch of my old English books and said, “Which of these do you want to keep?” My answer is always, “All of them.”

I can’t remember the last time I picked any of them up. Don’t we all go online when we have a question about a word or language? Still, I think someone might make better use of these than I am.

These book hold such memories for me. I remember the excitement of getting Fowler’s Modern English Usage, wanting to start understanding not only the how but also the why when it came to language. Or the Gage Canadian Dictionary, which my family often used when we played “The Dictionary Game” around the kitchen table. Someone would pick a word and we would all write creative definitions for it. Then one player would guess which was correct. Such a Ridler game to play!

Most recently the thesaurus was used not so much to expand our vocabulary or improve our writing but for coming up with great names for characters when we were online gaming. I loved playing a healer named Recovery. (Hmm… thinking about that, I might not be able to let that one go!)

I plan to only keep the Oxford, which I have had as long as I can remember. It was my companion through all my studies and I’d like to keep it with me.


Yesterday we also had an important conversation with our contractor. We are deciding whether or not to go ahead with an extension on our house, which would give us a much better bathroom (much needed) and more space for the studio (much wanted!) It would open up our second floor and add a sense of “making it our own.” Justin designed the layout which even our architect thought was great. The thing is – it is out of our budget. So we are dancing with the possibilities and figuring out priorities.

Do we stretch and save and reach? This feels exciting if it works and terrifying if it doesn’t. Do we work within the given blueprint, using the resources we have and feeling secure but not dreamy? That seems safe and familiar.

This is a question that relates to so many situations.

Is it best to scale back and work within what’s smart, reasonable and comfortable?

Is it best to hold a bigger vision and trust yourself to grow into it?

Right now we’re working on a third option – trying to figure out how we can make the very most out of the resources that we have. I am a Maximizer after all (See Strengthsfinder 2.0!)