Geez! What Do You Want NOW????
Parents know that sometimes, kids have no idea what they want. They ask for food when they’re actually thirsty. They get weird and whiny when they’re tired, confused, uncomfortable or bored. They ask for toys almost reflexively, even when they know the answer is going to be no, even when I told you before we went into the store that I’m not buying you anything!!!
Of course we all outgrow all that.
I find that when I am craving “stuff,” which could take the form of elaborate cowboy boots, a kick-ass hat, baubles and bangles, food, drink or even sex, sometimes it’s because I don’t KNOW what I really want. I haven’t given myself over to the discomfort of quieting long enough to question my spirit.
Why do I want that thing/that person/that cookie/ margarita/experience? How do I think I will feel once I get it? Is that thing/person/cookie/margarita/experience the best or only way to get to that feeling?
It’s not all that different from when I was four. Sometimes, I just plain don’t know what I want. I’m…tired. Or I’m bored. Or I’m confused, uncomfortable, or feeling sad or empty. I just want something, someone, to stuff inside the space that feels empty.
I don’t want to feel whatever it is I’m feeling. And I’m just positive, in that moment, that a toasted raisin bagel with cream cheese will fix that.
The holidays are practically the WantaDays. “What do you want this year?” Santa ho-hos into each cherubic ear. “What do the kids want?” your mother writes. “What does my spouse want?” you ponder as you trail aimlessly through department stores in search of something that is not Yet Another Scarf.
Here is some stuff, in no particular order, that I think I want. I am just riffing off the top of my head:
- A new set of cookware. I have a set of cookware and it works fine. I am sure that with a new set of cookware, I will cook more often. I know this is not true, but the story persists in my head. What do I really want? I want to SELF-CARE more effectively and NOURISH myself.
- I want a particular pair of sage green ankle-high cowgirl boots from the Sundance Catalogue. I know that when I wear them, I will look and feel HAWT. Thing is, I can probably look/feel the same without them.
- To learn how to speak French, to learn ASL, to learn how to play the guitar more proficiently, to take voice lessons. I love doing all these things; I do none of them well. I think I want to recapture the sense of MASTERY and PLAY I had as a child.
- I want everyone to leave me alone when I want to be left alone, and I want company when I want company, and I want my boyfriend to be here whenever I want him, and I want people to intuit my every need, without my having to say a thing. Okay, I think I want this. In reality? This would probably be really creepy.
- A toxin-free planet, peace on earth, the end to world hunger and grinding poverty, and I am so tempted to end this sentence with blah blah blah. Why? Because I feel helpless to get/effect any of this. I want to feel I am CONTRIBUTING to BETTERING the planet. Time to focus on small steps, not on big global issues that overwhelm me.
- I want a pound of bacon, cooked extra-crisp, and I want to eat it all in one sitting. I know without question that pigs are adorable live creatures who feel pain when killed and I don’t want to do that to another sentient being. And I know the curing process and the salt and the fat are bad for me. I want this anyway. I want to feel INDULGENT and INDULGED.
- Twinkle lights. I want them. Many, many, many of them. Pretty much everywhere, all the time. See if a bunch of you can make that happen, okay? I want my world to look and feel MAGICAL.
So what do you want? Why do you want it? What would fill that hole, give you that feeling, soothe your soul in a lasting way, instead?
Whatever that is? That’s what I wish for you. What you really, truly, on a soul-level want. What the heck. Make it two.
Happy holidays. Love, Maggie