My family has gathered at the beach this week, where we’re obsessed with post-dinner game night. For our current fave, The Story Game, each person writes the first line of a story and passes the piece of paper to the person next to him. Then that person writes the second sentence, folds the paper to conceal the first sentence, and passes it on. The point is to contribute one sentence to a narrative, with only the one preceding line to go on. (My family is full of English professors, writers, and artist types, so we find this fun.)
So with five people at a table, you can get a story that starts with “Sir John’s castle featured an escape tunnel that opened up deep in the forest” and ends with Benedict Cumberbatch doing Pilates at Taylor Swift’s Rhode Island beach house.
It all made me think about how the story of our lives can seem to be headed in one direction, only to turn in a surprisingly different one.
My own story has as many twists and turns as Sir John’s above. Growing up in Pennsylvania, I never dreamed I’d end up in NYC. When I was a French major, I didn’t know I’d dive into copywriting. I did NOT see chronic health issues coming which led to my studying Reiki in order to practice it on myself. I never intended to practice Reiki on others, but soon I was offering sessions to people and animals…which drew me to the world of animal communication. If you told that Pennsylvania girl she’d grow up to work with energy and hear cool stuff that animals had to say, she’d tell you not only are you crazy, but you’re confusing her with someone who’s really nuts.
The one thing that links all the twists and turns, though, was that I was listening to my gut. I led with my heart and didn’t look back. Maybe there’s something you’ve always wanted to do but never thought you could. I say listen to your heart, and let it tell you the story it wants to write. If you follow that thing that makes your heart sing, you can’t go wrong. Even if the path you take is winding, and you feel lost at times, keep checking in with yourself to feel what brings you joy. Here’s a secret: Benedict at Taylor’s beach house doesn’t have to be the ending. No matter how old you are, you can keep writing.
It’s all about the magic. 🙌