One of my goals for this new year is to choose one word at the beginning of each week to inspire my thinking, writing, sharing of ideas — and to offer it as some inspiration for a brief writing prompt. My word for this, the first full week of the new year, is RENEWAL.
Last spring when the people went into hibernation, the cars cooling in driveways and school buses quieted, do you recall how the birdsong returned and the skies swept brighter blue? Do you remember the awe of witnessing nature, given the space to return, renewed? There are lessons to be found in this renewal as we reemerge into the world.
When the schools open up and the children reappear, what might it look like to honor their nature, rather than force it back into a tight and narrow place? What might teachers and school boards and pressuring parents reimagine, to honor what our children have been through, and encourage their renewal?
Beautiful answers to those questions are suggested in these words below, attributed to a school principal in Ballard, Washington and shared with me by a friend.
And, if you’re open to a writing prompt, try this:
I wish for renewal of ______.
Set a timer for 11 minutes, and write without stopping, without censoring, just follow your thoughts. (Credit to my friend and writer Dana Childers, and her “Untamed Writing” sessions, for this format.)
May you feel a renewal of whatever it is you need — creativity, compassion, commitment to your goals — in this new year.