As I’m about to head out to run, I’m realizing that 2011 is closing much as it opened … A sunny cool day during which I spent the morning learning something new. Last year, it was running. This year it’s playing the ukulele.

As I’ve strummed my way through this week trying to figure out how people cram all their fingers into an area the size of a postage stamp, I’m in fifth grade again, learning to play the clarinet. It took a week to get a sound out of the thing. It took a month to get a scale and Hot Cross Buns. I wasn’t frustrated at the time, because I had no preconceived notions of how it was supposed to be. I just knew that eventually, I wanted to be good enough at this thing that I could play The Pink Panther Theme.

I guess what I’m getting at is trying to play the ukulele pushes me outside the lines I normally color within. Just like developing film this summer did. Or learning to run over the past year. And I’m trying to become comfortable in the discomfort of not knowing how to do something.

And rather than trying to hurry through the learning-how parts, I’m trying to bring focus and intent to the wibbly-wobbly part that happens before you learn how to do something.

Maybe that’s something like a resolution. Or maybe that’s just learning to get out of the way of what the mind wants.

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