Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Moments of Enlightenment

The other day at taekwondo, my instructor talked about why we keep training. Some days - especially the ones when my middle-aged body is complaining very loudly about being thrown around like a ragdoll - I wonder what the heck I’m still doing at the dojang. But I keep showing up for what my instructor calls “moments of enlightenment.”

I think I’ll call these MOE’s. (Kind of cute, huh?) They are the brief moments when all our training comes together in just the right way and we do something like pull off the perfect block or land the perfect kick or do a form with “no mind” and it feels amazing. Even after 6 1/2 years of training, I don’t have a lot of MOE’s during a class. I always seem to have a few, though, and just having the taste is enough to keep me coming back.

I think writing is the same way. Every day I put my butt in the chair, open a file and start writing. It’s so hard because even though I’ve been doing this a long time, my skills don’t quite measure up to my dreams. But they’re getting closer. And every once in a while I’ll land that perfect sentence or throw that perfect word down on the page. And. It. Feels. Amazing.

And that’s why I keep writing.

What keeps you coming back to writing?


  1. I get epiphanies in Vinyasa Yoga. The instructor keeps telling us to stop labeling what we about to try as "hard" and just be present. I now tell myself that about my writing. Stop pre-labeling it as "Ugh, this chapter is going to be hard."

    Sometimes I think only sheer stubbornness keeps me writing!

  2. I used to do TKD too. I didn't like it so much, and I haven't done it for ages. But I'll agree, the moments of enlightenment are worth sticking to something for. :)

  3. Those perfect writing moments are awesome! I try not to think about them too much, though, because all the other "okay" or "sorta good" or even "ordinary" moments pale in comparison and then I'd never get anything done. I'd always be waiting for the MOEs.

  4. For me it's seeing how much I've improved and seeing the book reach it's finish. It's a great feeling to have a completed book that I'm proud of.


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