A Meme

I found this meme a while ago but forgot to finish it. Enjoy!

1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?

I don’t know about perfect happiness–I’m tempted to say “heaven” but I don’t think that’s what the question is getting at. I think that I would be deeply happy knowing that I was doing what I was made to do. Even if it was uncomfortable, just KNOWING this would make me a deep, comfortable sort of happy.

I would also love to have lots of tea, some space and time for silence every day, and to know that the words that come from my heart (both spoken and written) had touched people deeply.

2. What is your greatest fear?

Losing Dave suddenly and violently is what comes to mind first, but I think that I’m actually more afraid of finding out that no one actually loves me, that everyone things derisively of me, and that they keep me around so they can laugh at me behind their backs.

3. Which living person do you most admire?

I admire most people who I know for something, but I’m not at all sure I want to list them here. It would be a long, long list. So, among famous people, I admire Marion Jones for telling the truth and Lindsey Lohan for getting her life back together.

4. What trait do you most deplore in yourself?

My distrust of myself. Don’t think too hard about the regressing loops that will create in a psyche.

5. What trait do you most deplore in others?

I hate it when people make quick, absolute judgments about how someone should be or live or perform a task when they don’t have all the details and don’t really want them. I hate it even more when they don’t care what is actually possible and not possible and just think things should be done their way.

6. What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Independence. I don’t advocate co-dependence, but I think that interdependence is a better approximation of where we should be, given the reality of what it means to be human.

7. On what occasion do you lie?

I hate this question. I lie when I get caught doing little things that embarrass me or that I’m afraid the person asking me would look down on me for. It’s usually in a moment, before I even realize that I’ve done it.

8. What do you dislike most about your appearance?

I wish I was longer-waisted.

9. What is your greatest regret?

There are a lot of things that didn’t go the way I would have planned them, but I don’t think I had a choice in a lot of them and so struggle to call them regrets. I could say, for example, that I regret getting deeply involved with a non-Christian guy at the end of high-school, but even that I did for decent reasons at the time and got some HUGE things out of.

10. What or who is the greatest love of your life?

Dave (I’m keeping this to earthly things, for those who are concerned.)

11. Which talent would you most like to have?

I would love to be brilliant with words, both spoken and written*

*I wrote that before and I’m leaving it, because it’s still true. Also, I don’t know if what I’m going to write next is specifically a talent. I would love to be about to use my words (both spoken and written) and my desire to sit with people and love them where they’re at, to facilitate grieving. We each have so much to grieve, even when we’ve lived fairly “easy” lives, and walking through that can help us find Jesus in new ways.

12. What is your current state of mind?

I’m tired but contented to sit on my couch and type.

13. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I would be less afraid, particularly regarding what people are going to think of me and what I need to do to be accepted.

14. What do you consider your greatest achievement?

These are all up there, about the same level: Surviving and thriving during the three weeks I spent mostly alone on an intensive retreat. Being part of one of the closest communities of college friends I’ve heard about. Living, studying and backpacking in Europe for 6 months. Surviving and thriving in my first year of marriage. Deciding to go back to therapy. Making the choice not to pursue a graduate degree in Philosophy.

15. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what would it be?

I have no idea. A little yellow flower? A dark Palamino? Benazir Bhutto? A dolphin?

16. What is your most treasured possession?

My artwork and writings, and the notebook I kept during my three-week retreat.

17. What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Seeing that God is real but not being able to bring yourself to believe in him.

18. Where would you like to live?

New Zealand, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, but not necessarily in that order.

19. What is your most marked characteristics?

Correcting poor grammar, like in this question. Seriously? I’m straightforward, but I can be gentle when I show truth. I’m stubborn as a rock if you attack me head on but supple and teachable if you make suggestions and ask questions. I ask good questions, both with my head and my heart. I love people, and I love giving them words that help them live.

20. Who are your favourite writers?

Louisa May Alcott. Lois McMaster Bujold. Lauren Winner. Annie Dillard. J. K. Rowling. Dorothy Sayers. J. R. R. Tolkien. Madeline L’Engle. Fyodor Doestoevsky. David Benner.

21. Who is your favourite hero of fiction?

Jo March

22. Who are your heroes in real life?

I don’t think I have any. I have occasionally put people on a pedestal like that, but I have trouble keeping them there. Generally, anyone who gives their life for another, particularly when it’s simply a part of their job (like a policeman, fireman, military member).

23. What is it that you most dislike?

Could we get any more general? Traffic. Allergies. Stupid movies. The “entertain me” attitude that’s so prevalent lately. People who say they care but don’t.

24. What is your motto?

I don’t have one. The closest thing I’ve found lately are Jesus’ words to Peter, James and John after the Transfiguration: Rise, and have no fear.

25. Favourite journey?

Traveling to Italy and Greece through my school. It was a graduation present and a last Hurrah! for several of us who were close.

26. What do you most value in your friends?

A willingness to hear my heart and then be with me where I am, without trying to change me or fix me.

27. Which word or phrase do you most overuse?

I sound like such a California girl lately–“Awesome,” “Totally,” “Cool.” Online, it’s gotta be “Wow.”

28. Which historical figure do you most identify with?

Um…drawing a blank here (ask me about fictional characters…I identify with loads of them). I don’t know about identify with, but I find Mary, Queen of Scots, absolutely fascinating.

29. What is your greatest extravagance?

Shoes, books, and eating out. And, in the future, Macintosh electronic equipment.

30. If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?

I’d have us share deeply with comfort and ease and without the need to produce or squash feeling.

31. What is your favourite occupation?

That I’ve had? Teacher. In general? Writer, particularly back in the old days where female writers were a little odd and mysterious.

32. What is the quality you most like in a woman?

The ability to empathize well.

33. What is the quality you most like in a man?

Ditto.

34. How would you like to die?

I’d prefer to just drift away in my sleep, with Dave nearby. Either that, or I’d like to die for someone else.

35. If you could choose what you want to come back as, what would it be?

Just for the record, this is a terrible final question. Maybe just a little yellow flower, on a hillside in the Pacific Northwest, bringing joy and not caring an iota for myself.

Now, for my tags (because don’t you always tag someone with these things? But please feel free to participate if and as you desire):

Christianne

Kirsten

Tammy

Di

Terri 

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29 Comments

Filed under Links, Lists

29 responses to “A Meme

  1. i don’t think i’m going to get to this for a while what with trying to re-emerge from my recent absence from the world, but i’m flattered you thought of me. how about if i give you one of the answers here:

    18) where would you like to live?

    ~ in a place where all my blog-buddies were together.

  2. That totally makes sense to me. And, for what it’s worth, I’m glad you’re back. Your “snippets” about the people you were with were so beautiful.

    Yes, blog-buddies should be together. Maybe that’s what heaven is for.

  3. Tammy

    Sarah
    After i rise from the dead we will talk about this okay? I will read this in more depth. I got your e-mail, we will talk soon. God bless……you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

  4. ooooh, this is a GREAT meme! i had so much fun reading all your responses, learning so much about you, feeling confirmed about things i’ve come to know about you so far. and i had that great feeling that comes along when reading a really great book that you discover is totally great right from the beginning so that you can spend the entire book thinking, “ooooh, i’m so glad this book just keeps going and going because i don’t want it to end, ever.” that’s how it felt to read this meme, because it was surprisingly lengthly. which totally stoked me out.

    thank you for tagging me to do it, too! i look forward to it. i think it will be fun, but also require quite a bit of thoughtfulness. i’ll need to carve out a specific time to put myself into this one.

    ps: i was thinking your response to coming back as a person or thing would be to come back as a great, magnificent tree. but then you chose a little yellow flower. which i thought was just remarkable, given your recent feeling of tension over just this contrast.

  5. Tammy–no dying, ok? I haven’t gotten to talk to you yet…and I’ll be thinking of you and praying, too.

    Christianne–I’m so glad you’ll do it 😉 I think I thought of the tree but the flower would be better for me, right now. Maybe someday the tree will be good, but right now I think I’m good with the flower.

    I totally know the feeling you were talking about with books and characters…I hope I feel the same way when I read yours!

  6. Wow, that’s got to take the record for the longest meme. I guess the meme-ster couldn’t decide on a theme? 🙂

    Anyway, I loved your answers. Some poignant, some humorous.

    And if you come back as a flower, will you come to my yard and let my Littlest pick you and put you in a mason jar on the wooden table?

  7. Laura, I love that picture…if I come back as flower, I will do my very best. And then maybe I’ll get to do that again and again…what an honor to be the flower picked by a child.

    And yes…very long. Probably why I didn’t finish it the first time 😉

  8. Di

    hi sarah, i’ve been peeking over here two days now and finally must say i too will need to carve out time for this…a quick pass through landed me on a couple easy answers for starters 10) Rob 12) peaceful easy feeling.

    i’ll be back…

  9. Di

    oh and 34) ditto! definitely well said sarah.

  10. Di

    35) i’d be a rock that cried out; or a waterfall, or maybe just part of a waterfall over a rock (like in hinds’ feet 😉

  11. Di

    hey that was supposed to be…

    35) i’d be a rock that cried out; or a waterfall, or maybe just part of a waterfall over a rock (like in hinds’ feet)

    (seeing if i get the winky dude again)

  12. Di

    havc a great day 😉

  13. jennyjack

    Hey wasn’t 15 and 35 the same question?

    Sarah, I think you and I are more alike than I imagined…you’re a six too aren’t you??

    Love you friend,
    J’j

  14. Di, I’m so glad you’ll take the time to do it. I don’t even remember who tagged me, it took so long, so take all the time you need. It was really funny–you had me scrolling up and down and up and down to see which answers you were giving to what 😉 Also, I’m wondering if we’re a lot alike, at least in some ways.

    JJ-Yeah, I wondered that when I was taking it…which makes 35 an even WORSE final question. And I am a six (on the Enneagram, for those of you who think we’re speaking in strange code)…though now you have me wondering which answers make you say we’re alike. Maybe I should tag you, too…

  15. Di–I love the smiley guy…;) 🙂 :p (trying to figure out which combos get me smileys…)

  16. Good list of authors. And I appreciate the old screen name you used from the Iliad.

    I don’t yet know Lois McMaster Bujold (but I love scifi) or David Benner (but I love ivp).

  17. Di

    1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
    Pure joy even in the midst of sorrow
    2. What is your greatest fear?
    I don’t really do fear…but the sight or sound of someone else, person or animal, in pain or being hurt, tortured, suffering…that is excruciating for me. So I think I fear that.
    3. Which living person do you most admire?
    Most admire…I don’t do most either. Oh oh, I’m sensing a theme. I’m with you Sarah, I admire many things (or at least something) in every person, place and animal. I admire people who can pick one thing.
    4. What trait do you most deplore in yourself?
    I’ve learned not to deplore any trait about myself or others but to embrace even those most detestable parts and figure out what is beneath that, affirm that, change what needs changing, and move one.
    5. What trait do you most deplore in others?
    Ditto.
    6. What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
    I like what Sarah said….Independence. I don’t advocate co-dependence, but I think that interdependence is a better approximation of where we should be, given the reality of what it means to be human.
    7. On what occasion do you lie?
    Never (unless this is a lie but if so, it would be unintentional).
    8. What do you dislike most about your appearance?
    Oh snap. Appearing on camera or film or any large screen projection device.
    9. What is your greatest regret?
    Deceiving another human being.
    10. What or who is the greatest love of your life?
    Rob.
    11. Which talent would you most like to have?
    To really use the ones I’ve been given and hear in the end “well done.”
    12. What is your current state of mind?
    Still…peaceful, easy feeling.
    13. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
    I could fly the way I sometimes can in my dreams and be in Haiti one moment and Hawaii the next then dive into that pool with crystals and jewels and agates….I guess I’d be spirit with a heavenly body.
    14. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
    First thing that came to mind oddly was the no-hitter I pitched in my senior year (how shallow) then regressing further back on my timeline to the spelling thing in 5th grade (too vague to describe) … getting people to like me again after jr. high. Oh such striving. Now, it’s just simply Being…in the presence of Jesus, with my husband, with family, friend, whomever is there and needs me to be present …just being fully there and fully alive. I have a lot of growing to do but those moments of knowing you’re “there” are great. Helping my husband nail an APA paper. Oh yeah. Learning from mistakes.
    15. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what would it be?
    This seems like it’s against my religion to answer. So all religion aside, I’d come back already Christlike.
    16. What is your most treasured possession?
    In terms of an inadamant object since that’s really all we can possess, my wedding ring; my ability to think, feel, speak, behave and my response-ability to let others do the same.
    17. What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
    Believing this world is all there is.
    18. Where would you like to live?
    San Diego…or wherever life takes Rob and I on this journey together. Then heaven.
    19. What is your most marked characteristics?
    Knowing and being know, placing a high value on truth as best we know
    20. Who are your favourite writers?
    Paul, Francine Rivers, bloggers
    21. Who is your favourite hero of fiction?
    Crush comes to mind.
    22. Who are your heroes in real life?
    My husband. My brothers. Their wives. My sister, our parents. Teachers.
    23. What is it that you most dislike?
    lying; roadkill
    24. What is your motto?
    Tell me the truth so I can exist and decide based on what I know.
    25. Favourite journey?
    Looking for agates.
    26. What do you most value in your friends?
    Being real. Noticing their beauty, their strength.
    Maybe this is my motto:
    to be seen and known and loved~no stone left unturned~no stone thrown
    27. Which word or phrase do you most overuse?
    sweet, cool beans, working from home today
    28. Which historical figure do you most identify with?
    Ruth, Esther, Paul
    29. What is your greatest extravagance?
    wine
    30. If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?
    I’d have us share deeply with comfort and ease and without the need to produce or squash feeling. (sounds good to me Sarah!)
    31. What is your favourite occupation?
    Working from home : )
    32. What is the quality you most like in a woman?
    Offering her unique beauty
    33. What is the quality you most like in a man?
    Offering his strength
    34. How would you like to die?
    Almost like Sarah said…I’d prefer to just drift away in my sleep, with Rob nearby. Either that, or I’d like to die for someone else.
    35. If you could choose what you want to come back as, what would it be?
    a rock that cried out; or a waterfall, or maybe just part of a waterfall over a rock (like in hinds’ feet)

  18. Mark–welcome! Glad you stopped by. And I have to ask–did you know that ‘Aegialia’ was from the Iliad or did you read my explanation? I ask because I’ve never met anyone who just had that information floating around in your brain, and so I’m geeking out (nerding out?) at the idea that you might have.

    Bujold is very, very cool. Well…some of her work is. Her fantasy is not nearly as good as her scifi (the Vorkosigan series). And Benner…well, what can I say…IVP all the way?

  19. Di–wow (Like I said, I say that too much). Sweet. Cool beans.

    Thanks so much!

    I loved, Loved, LOVED your focus on being, on knowing and being known, and on truth. Those are some of the things that I value most in this world, and I feel a kinship with you when you say them.

    Also, I’d love to hear the story behind looking for agates (I don’t even know exactly what an agate is…something to do with rock?)? I’d love to hear what that’s like and how you do it.

    Finally, the picture of the waterfall over the rock touched me today in a way it didn’t before. What a spectacular choice of something to come back as…how beautiful, to him and to any onlookers. I don’t remember much of Hind’s Feet, but I remember thinking it was profound when I read it.

    So thanks again, friend.

  20. I’m the same way with regrets–even those you’d think I’d regret, I saw God work in His mysterious ways.
    And Jo March! I’ve told my husband that when the time comes for us to have kids, we have to have a little girl and name her Josephine Anne.
    He’s not buying it so far.

  21. Josephine Anne — what a gorgeous name, Heather! You got my vote.

  22. Heather–Well, I’m with Christianne–I love the name, regardless of what he says. Is “Anne” for Anne of Green Gables (because if it were my name, that’s what it would stand for).

    A plug for one of my favorite books, by the abovementioned Bujold: one of her female protagonists has beautiful reddish hair and is named Cordelia…and it HAS to be for Anne’s Cordelia 😉

    You could tell your husband he could call her “Mojo Jojo”…that might help…or maybe not 😉

  23. wow, where have i been??!! talk about showing up late for the party!!

    i will be getting all meme-alicious on this tomorrow evening, i imagine … for now, this little blogger is headed to bed.

    love to you, sarah!! this one looks fun. :o)

  24. Di

    since I was a little girl I’ve loved looking for agates. back then a favorite place to search for those pretty rocks was at an office building with miles and miles (seemed like to me then) of river rock in a double perimeter around the building and then an outer edge surrounding the parking lot – thinking back those were times of really connecting with God and still are…like looking for that one precious stone and being so thankful to have my agate eyes to find such my little treasures. my little nephew joey loved it when i took him to look for agates…it just slows you down and connects you at the heart. love it. some i’ve found and polished for you to see here http://www.myspace.com/dikistler2007 with joey when he was 4 or 5 he’d find some “pretty rock” and ask “is this an agate” and i’d say no but it’s a very pretty rock you can keep it too! and he did for a while, eventually if he got that response he’d toss it down like “no way” and then he got his agate eyes.

    agates are a metaphor of learning, searching for good things, finding beauty, layers of meaning

    often times you’ll find one you cannot see any lines but you know inside they’re there and if you crack it open or just use some grit and polish, the true beauty is revealed

    oh joey’s eyes when something so ordinary on the outside was nothing but extraordinary lines and colors on the inside! he loved the hammer time too : )

    joey is 15 now … it’s been awhile since those agate days …

    I have one rock, slate like, nothing special except that when joey found it on Easter morning probably 10 years ago now, it was in two pieces already when he found it…and he gave me half and kept the other and said “hey auntie di this can be our agate hunting rock and when we can put them together whenever we look for agates”

    i still have that rock *tears.of.joy*

    and as we continued our little journey of gathering rocks worth keeping his tiny voice sang “you came from heaven to earth to show the way from the earth to the cross my debt to pay from the cross to the grave from the grave to the sky Lord I lift your name on high…”

    that memory rocks like an agate.

  25. Kirsten–um…haven’t you been teaching classes? 😉

    Looking forward to your words, friend.

    Di–wow…those rocks are gorgeous. And I love the stories about Joey. What special times for you guys to be together! And the agate hunting rock…wow.

    I’m struck by your phrase–“agate eyes”–I like the concept of learning to see, of training what you’re born with so that you can use it better for a specific purpose. It reminds me of my training in spiritual direction–so much of that is learning to see (though most people call it ‘discernment,’ I think).

    I also like the symbolism you tie to the agate. I love it when things take on a symbolism that, while we can share it, seems to somehow be between us and God alone. Little yellow butterflies are like that for me 😉

    Love you, and thanks for sharing.

  26. Tammy

    I really like this blog, as always your blogs make me think. SO here is my responses. :

    Question 2 This is a dumb question but do you really feel this way? It is so heartbreaking and sad to me. You were so honest here. I am positive that you cannot escape being loved by this crowd. Love will chase you down. You are cherished and love here at the church of blog. Terri used to say to me when i first started blogging (and did not really know what i was getting in to) Tammy you are safe. Those words made me cry on more than one occasion. So Sarah i say to you that you are safe.

    Question5: Your answers here are very powerful. I plan to do a blog by GB, repenting of religion in response to your meme. He touches on this subject about how we should live about judgment and step into love.

    Question17: What is the lowest depths of misery that you would fear. You said Seeing that God is real and not being able to believe in Him. If i changed your last words and say my deepest misery is knowing that God loves me and feeling like i am too in love with myself to love Him totally. That is a daily prison, knowing that God deserves so much more of me.

    Question34 How would you like to die? i loved that you said for someone else. My response to that question is I would like to die as a martyr. I am surely biting off more than i could do no doubt and God knows Peter said i will die for you lord and he did not. But it is just a desire. I cannot think of any greater honor that God could bestow upon a child of His than to die for Him.

    Thanks for this blog it was quiet enlightening.

  27. Yay…Tammy’s back! Hi, Tammy!

    You know, I do really feel that way, though I know that it has a lot more to do with me and a lot of things in my family and my past than with people I interact with now. It is sad, too. I feel sad for the little girl who learned that she had to be afraid of that, for the little Sarah who still lives inside of me. Thanks for telling me that I’m safe here…it means a lot.

    Who is GB? Whoever he is, I can’t wait to read what you have to say on this.

    You know, I think what you said about re-writing question 17 was profound. God deserves all of us, which is more than we can ever give. Wow.

    A martyr, huh? I can see it, actually. And Peter DID die for Jesus (upside-down on a cross, if tradition is right), just not when he said he would. Maybe Jesus is making you into a person who CAN die for him, even if he never calls you to do it, you know.

    You’re welcome…love you.

  28. Tammy

    Greg Boyd, he is Terri’s pastor.

  29. Ah…I kept thinking Great Britain and that just wasn’t working out too well.

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