2.16.2012

Oh to be as brave and adaptable as my child

One of the ongoing arguments my husband and I have is about whether or not to try something different on a restaurant menu. I generally opt for reliable favorites, while he's willing to give new dishes a try. I'm always satisfied, but don't ever experience the thrill of discovering a new taste I love, and he occasionally has ordering remorse, but often finds something he really likes.

A few months back, I wrote "TRY NEW THINGS" on an index card, and stuck it to my fridge. I'm not sure what inspired the motto, but I'm glad those three words came to me, because they're transforming my life. They're part of my 2012 resolution to "live creatively in every aspect of my life" (including doing my hair, which I have ignored for the past 25 years, but recently realized is a neglected artist's medium sitting right atop my head).

Last month I got together for a girlfriend's birthday at a restaurant I'd never been to before. My eyes immediately located the burger on the menu, but I forced myself to keep exploring. I told my friends, "2011 me would have ordered the burger, but 2012 me is going to try the Frisee and Raspberry salad." (Apparently 2012 me is more adventurous and healthier--I hope that lasts.) The salad wasn't amazing. I looked longingly at the fries on the plate across from me. But there have been times when trying new things has paid off immensely. (Not when I stuffed a sushi roll in my mouth at that same restaurant. Not then). Times when I've tried new recipes, struck up conversations with people I normally wouldn't, experimented with genres that intimidate me (enter poetry), buy a shirt I'm not certain I can pull off, and go places I've never been, both geographically and emotionally.

Consistency and routine definitely have their place, but it's nice to shake up the routine once in a while, and live on a whim. To not restrict ourselves to our perceived perceptions of what we do, like, and are. Because maybe there's more to us.

Motherhood is lovely in the way it forces you to try new things. Because with our children evolving at an astonishing rate, we have to be flexible to keep up, to solve the issues that arise at each age, to survive. The lives of babies are bursting with change and newness, and yet they accept these variables with curiosity and grace.

I hope I can be more like that.