A core that pilates can't touch

Reverb 10: Day 31

What central story is at the core of you, and how do you share it with the world? (Bonus: Consider your reflections from this month. Look through them to discover a thread you may not have noticed until today.)

I don't know that I have a core story that I share with the world. I have core values: honesty, integrity, accountability, reliability, humor, awesomeness.

Almost Done

Reverb 10: Day 30

This month, gifts and gift-giving can seem inescapable. What’s the most memorable gift, tangible or emotional, you received this year?

The most memorbale gifts this year were the ones that were the most thoughtful. I don't want to list them here because I would hate to leave one out. Several friends and family and coworkers gave me some very thoughtful gifts this year, gifts that showed me how well they know me.

Not My Favorite Prompt

Reverb 10: Day 28

What’s the thing you most want to achieve next year? How do you imagine you’ll feel when you get it? Free? Happy? Complete? Blissful? Write that feeling down. Then, brainstorm 10 things you can do, or 10 new thoughts you can think, in order to experience that feeling today.

The thing I most want to achieve in 2011: A normal weight.

How I will feel when I do it: Relieved, pretty, sexy.

Ten things I can do or ten thoughts I can think to feel that way now:

  1. Get my braces off
  2. Keep up with my skin care
  3. Wear make-up every day
  4. Get a haircut
  5. Continue to buy nice clothes
  6. Exercise
  7. Get regular manicures
  8. Get regular pedicures
  9. Sleep around (kidding!)
  10. Pretend I already feel that way

I love my baby

Reverb 10: Day 27

Our most profound joy is often experienced during ordinary moments. What was one of your most joyful ordinary moments this year?

When I was on maternity leave with my second baby last year, I sent my oldest one to daycare still. I wanted time alone with my new baby. Since then, I've only had her to myself for a few hours at the most. A couple weeks ago, she and I stayed home all day together, something we hadn't done in over a year. It was wonderful. She is such a delightful girl, so sweet and funny. It is completely different hanging out with her alone, than hanging out with my both of my girls together. I am looking forward to tomorrow when my husband and oldest daughter spend the day at the Rose Parade. I'll be home, chilling with the baby.

Food: My Lover, My Nemesis

Reverb 10: Day 26

What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth and touched your soul?

I don't think any food I ate "touched my soul," but here are some highlights:



Reverb 10: Day 25

Sift through all the photos of you from the past year. Choose one that best captures you; either who you are, or who you strive to be. Find the shot of you that is worth a thousand words. Share the image, who shot it, where, and what it best reveals about you.


What this self-portrait says about me:

  1. My eyes are my best feature
  2. I care about my skin
  3. I like fake eyelashes
  4. I would rather sit in my hotel room with a mud mask on, watching TV, than socialize with strangers

A post that isn't a post

Reverb 10: Day 24

What was the best moment that could serve as proof that everything is going to be alright? And how will you incorporate that discovery into the year ahead?

I can't really answer this one here. I would have to be so vague that it would be meaningless to you. I promise to tell you all about in six months.

What's in a name?

Reverb 10: Day 23

Let’s meet again, for the first time. If you could introduce yourself to strangers by another name for just one day, what would it be and why?

I like my name. Michelle works for me. If I were to choose a different name, however, I would choose something more French, like Odette.

I am more of a homebody

Reverb 10: Day 22

How did you travel in 2010? How and/or where would you like to travel next year?

I went to Nashville for a girls weekend. We went to Kansas for my husband's grandfather's memorial service. I went to San Francisco and New York City for conferences.

Next year, I have a girls weekend in Austin and conferences in Austin, Las Vegas, and Asheville, North Carolina. I will hopefully get to Ft. Worth to visit my BFF, too.

Future Me

Reverb 10: Day 21

Imagine yourself five years from now. What advice would you give your current self for the year ahead? (Bonus: Write a note to yourself 10 years ago. What would you tell your younger self?)

For the next year, I hope that my future self will tell me that everything is going to work out as I am hoping it will, as long as I do what needs to be done, and I don't slack off. Stay the course.

I don't want to tell my 26-year-old self anything; I can't change the past.

Beyond Avoidance

Reverb 10: Day 20

What should you have done this year but didn’t because you were too scared, worried, unsure, busy or otherwise deterred from doing? (Bonus: Will you do it?)

I mentioned this one already, too. I have been avoiding getting our finances in order. We will take care of this shortly.

Ride the Rapids

Reverb 10: Day 18

What do you want to try next year? Is there something you wanted to try in 2010? What happened when you did / didn’t go for it?

I want to go whitewater rafting next year. It is something I have avoided in the past due to my weight, even though I had a couple opportunities to do it.

I'm Pretty Awesome

Reverb 10: Day 17

What was the best thing you learned about yourself this past year? And how will you apply that lesson going forward?

I'd let myself fall into a rut at work. I wasn't doing anything challenging or interesting. Fighting for my new role at work helped reinvigorate me, but I still had three months to transition to that role, so that energy boost faded. Then I attended the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco in November. Every single person I talked to there, without exception, was interesting, talented, and smart. Speaking with all those people about our work not only excited me about what I was doing in my new role, but reminded me that I am good at my job and that my skills are in demand. It got me out of my rut and boosted my professional confidence.

Friends. Real friends, not the TV show.

Reverb 10: Day 16

How has a friend changed you or your perspective on the world this year? Was this change gradual, or a sudden burst?

My friends, as a group, have changed my perspective on my own life this year. It became clear this year that I have not been getting enough face-to-face contact with my friends, not only to maintain my friendships, but to sustain myself. I need it.

2010 in Five Minutes

Reverb 10: Day 15

Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2010 in five minutes. Set an alarm for five minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2010.

  1. My baby's first words
  2. My pre-schooler's unsolicited "I love you"s
  3. Everyone who helped me physically or offered emotional support after my mom died
  4. All the thoughts I had in the days after my mom died (I used my journal for the first time in years)
  5. My ATM PIN
  6. The lesson I learned about asking for what you want
  7. The surge of professional confidence I gained after attending the Web 2.0 Summit in November
  8. How supportive my husband has been this year
  9. The warmth of snuggly babies

Five minutes goes by quickly.

Family Matters

Reverb 10: Day 14

What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it?

Family. When my mom died, I was so thankful to have such a large family. I have tried to be more expressive of my thankfulness and love for them but I can definitely do better.

I have a career

Reverb 10: Day 13

When it comes to aspirations, it’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen. What’s your next step?

I have very specific career goals and clear steps to achieve those goals. My progress toward them started much earlier this year when I told my VP exactly what I wanted to do and asked that he keep me in mind should something open up in that area. A couple things did, but they weren't exactly what I wanted, so I asked for what I wanted. I fought for it and I got it. Meeting those first objectives was the most difficult part of the process, but I am keeping the momentum going. I am being intentionally vague. You'll find out why eventually.

Le Corps

Reverb 10: Day 12

This year, when did you feel the most integrated with your body? Did you have a moment where there wasn’t mind and body, but simply a cohesive YOU, alive and present?

I feel most integrated with my body now. I know what my brain chemistry requires to stay even in the wake of post-partum depression and the shitbag that was 2010. I know what my skin requires to stay clear. I altered my anatomy in order to help me achieve a normal weight. There hasn't been any transcendant moment, though. I never feel that my mind and body are disconnected. I am simply more knowledgable about the needs of my body now.