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Day 753 March 30, 2016
Prompt: Why are we conditioned into the strawberry and cream, Mother Goose world, Alice in Wonderland fable, only to be broken on the wheel as we grow older and become aware of ourselves as individuals with a dull responsibility in life? Sylvia Plath. What is your take on this?
The brilliance of Plath’s tormented insight has been revealed to me more and more I as age. The way in which she viewed the world around her and her place in it, was remarkably developed and venerable for someone so young. She tragically bore the “dull responsibility” in life for as long as she could and I think of her struggle often these days. Writing, I hope, brought her some respite from those dark hours. I know that it does that for me sometimes. I think I agree that we, young girls in particular, are conditioned with fairytales and fables. I think they are far less a staple of growing up than they used to be. I believe the collective conscious of today crafts warrior princesses who do the rescuing, brave girls who engineer and invent and young minds who solve problems and tote the motto, #smartisthenewcool. I like to think mothers today raise girls who have a confidence and a vision for themselves and like me, look for the real life lessons in those old Mother Goose stories. Also, I’m not sure I see myself as an individual with a “dull responsibility in life”. There are days of drudgery of course, but those days don’t carry the script of my existence. Have I been broken on the wheel? Absolutely. Several times over at certain points in my life…but for each “down” there has always been a resounding “up”. Becoming an individual is the beauty of the journey, with all its vivid pain and joy. The times when I have been broken, have allowed me to grow into something more. I love Alice and I wish sometimes the world was more “Wonderland” but one can only get lost among the mome raths for so long before having to grow up. I know that and I make sure my daughter does too. I might not be able to spare her the wheel but I can do my best to prepare her for it.
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DAY 1232: March 30, 2016
Prompt: What does success mean to you?
Success is something I think a lot about. My type A personality tells me that the more power and authority I have in my career, the more successful I will be. I am driven, at times, beyond my own real ambitions I think. If I were to consider the question of what success legitimately means to me, I think my actual opinion would be far less lofty and almighty. I would like to have recognition for my accomplishments in a very male dominated industry. I would like my contributions to the company to be acknowledged among my peers in that industry. I would like to be seen as someone who “knows their stuff” and who’s opinion and insight matters. Do I need to be CEO? Some days it is easy to get lost in that fantasy but truth be told, I don’t want to sacrifice all that I would need to in order to be a good CEO. Having the finances to make home improvements, send my daughter to piano lessons and summer science camps and to take that annual vacation…that’s a more attainable way to define my success. I think just being able to live life as full as one can, with as much contentment as possible and without the stress of surviving from paycheck to paycheck, I think that makes us successful.