03-31, Hello Sunshine

Slice of Life, You Brought the Sunshine

When I started this challenge a month ago, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I remember thinking, “This might be fun,” and “This could help me write more often.” I thought, “It would be great to tell the teachers at next year’s conference my experience from participating in this,” and “I don’t know if I could write everyday though – I might not make that.” But I did. I did, and so much more. I wrote. I reflected. I remembered. I resigned, returned, related and I renewed my most meaningful love affair with writing, and for that, I am so grateful.

In my “writing life,” I’ve felt affectionately towards the alphabet as a tiny tot, I’ve transcribed many adventures in elementary classrooms, I was the only one excited about essays on standardized tests, and I’ve trained a roomful of teachers, PreK-12 on the art and science of writing. Writing has afforded me the incomparable opportunity to share my deepest sentiments and enliven my most vivid imaginations. Picturesque words clothe my convictions and help me to convey what means the most.

This Slice of Life Challenge…has created for me a canvas to connect to the world. While I’ve written with others before on a scheduled basis, I’ve never had such a transcendent experience with a community of writers, especially one that was intercontinental. Inherent in the motif of this majestic encounter is that we’ve all been impacted by a universal foe. One that is invisible with visible effects. Debilitating – and yet defining. It has crippled us and created a strength that surpasses our differences, uniting us in our humanity. In participating in such a unique event, I am both humbled and honored.

To the creators of SOL, I extend my deepest appreciation. Not only have you cultivated compassion across communities, you’ve infused us with tenacity in our darkest hours. You’ve allowed us to share our fears and our angst, our faith and our apprehensions, our follies and our achievements, but most of all – ourselves. Our…slices. Thank you for pushing me to dig deeply. For compelling me to compose on the days when I’m sure I wouldn’t have had it not been for those nudging guidelines. For exposing me to the poignant posts of readers all over the world whose blogs I may never have known. Oh how I’ve relished the writing of my fellow slicers. I intend to commit one poem to memory…

While it may seem silly to some, I feel a most unusual satisfaction on this 31st day of the challenge. I liken it to my feelings of receiving my graduate degree. I feel that there should be a stage on which I should walk. A robe in which I should be clothed. A hand to shake. A certificate to receive. A smile to ebb. Because this writing was both rewarding and difficult. Not even because of the timing, but more because of what was happening with my heart on this roller coaster of emotions among global chaos. “Slicing” helped center me, contributing to my calm. I was encouraged both in words I wrote for myself and those shared and received by others.

I am proud that I did not falter, though many of my posts were late. I readily blame my four boys and husband for interfering with my thoughts – though they were even more often my sources of inspiration. To the founders of this idea, you should receive the greatest gift of all. In your ingenuity, your conception has braided culture, craft and community in a way that has brought healing to more hearts than you will ever know. Because some readers never comment, yet they cling to the context of these words.

I suppose I should wrap this up now. I realize I’ve held on to these sentiments as I wondered if my efforts would culminate in my successful meeting of this challenge. Now that I’m at the end, I feel like I can’t silence my little self, but I will. Moving along, I bought a new journal (which I do quite regularly). When I looked at the title (as I’m very, very picky about choosing the right one), it resonated with me in so many ways. The SOL challenge brought a light into my life that I’d not previously known. Its posts, practices and promises (to those who faithfully write, both intangible and concrete) brightened my most difficult days.

I intend to christen this new journal on tomorrow, as April for me will constitute a new beginning; but, every day that I write, I will remember my month-ful of a Slice of Life. It’s sunshine will extend far beyond March. I will remember this warmth for the rest of my life.

#thankyou #carlamichelle #healing #loving #whole #firsttimer #sliceoflife #priceless

8 thoughts on “03-31, Hello Sunshine

  1. I love your phrase about alphabetic affections. I feel those, too, and enjoyed basking in the joy your writing has conveyed throughout March. Congratulations, Carla, on fulfilling a month of writing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, Carla, what sweet words. Your capable communication of your appreciation is heartfelt and contagious. Absolutely lovely! Here’s an example: “In your ingenuity, your conception has braided culture, craft and community in a way that has brought healing to more hearts than you will ever know.” Such wonderful thoughts. Thanks for helping me to vicariously be more proud and thankful for my success this March too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Denise, I am so glad to share this moment with you and the community of writers that have bonded together during this season. If I could be very honest, I’d have to say that was my favorite sentence in the whole post (smile)!

      I am elated to be able to celebrate this moment with you. It has been among the most transformative experiences of my life. So grateful… #priceless Thank you for sharing this moment with me ~Carla Michelle

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What a beautiful, thoughtful, and reflective post about the Slice of Life Challenge. It’s such a cornerstone of my year. You are such a gifted writer…and I have learned from your craft when reading your slices this past month. I am so glad you joined us on this journey, and I look forward to seeing you next year…:) Are you going to join the SOL community on Tuesdays? I think I will.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Aggie! I’m so glad you liked it! I am truly humbled by your response – and I’m delighted to hear you’ve learned something from me, lol. I’ve definitely been learning from each of you amazing writers since participating in this challenge.

      I am definitely looking forward to doing this next year, and I do plan to figure out that Tuesday deal. I’m thinking we’d have to check in in a different place? It will be a great way to grow along that writer’s continuum. Thanks so much for your feedback. I hold it dear.

      With Warmest Regards,

      ~Carla Michelle

      Liked by 1 person

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