The alphabet of right now

The Alphabet of Right Now

About a year and a half ago I wrote an “alphabet of right now.”  I was thinking about it all day today and decided it was worth a revisit.

A -Allison.  My dear cousin who has recently moved to Boston.  She is without question Grace and Whit’s favorite person in the whole world, and having her nearby has brought me back in touch with the profound comfort and companionship, not to mention connection with the web of heritage, that extended family can provide.

B -Blogging.  I could never have imagined the things that this blog has brought to me, the relationships I’ve formed here, the way this place has allowed me to dream of myself writing for real someday.

C -Cape Cod Sea Camps.  Grace goes this summer, 25 years after I first went, and time folds back on itself.

D – Diet Coke.  A terrible addiction.

E – Exeter.  A place whose influence over me grows as I move further away from it, something I never anticipated.

F -Friends.  How fortunate I am, and how increasingly aware I am of this good fortune, to be blessed with a handful of deeply loyal, brilliant, and funny native speakers.

G – Grace, grace, grace, grace, grace.  Funnily enough, I was not obsessed with grace when I named my daughter that.  I am now.

H – Hilary.  My beloved sister, my only sibling.  Though I wish I saw more of her, HWM remains an intensely important and significant part of my life.  And for this I am so, so, so thankful.

I -Insomnia.  Bane of my life.

J – Just be here now.  The Colin Hay lyric that runs through my head every single day.

K – Kripalu.  I am so excited for Dani Shapiro‘s memoir workshop at Kripalu in May.  I’m particularly thrilled that Grace is coming with me, to attend a childrens’ yoga workshop at the same time.

L –Legoland.  A four day visit with Grace and Whit that none of us will ever forget.  Already it is climbing the charts of Best Childhood Memory, and fast.

M –Mary Oliver.

N – Neatness.  My natural state, which some might call a rigid obsession.  I’m losing the battle against the tide of flotsam that these children bring in with them.

O – Oyster Bay sauvignon blanc.  On the rocks.

P -Princeton.  15th reunion in June.  All four of us are going, and staying in the dorms.  I can’t believe my kids are old enough to do that.  I remember so vividly, in my grandparents’ dusty attic, unearthing costumes that my father wore marching in Pops’ P-Rades as a kid.  The idea that I’m now the parent, and my children are going to walk with me, stuns me almost speechless.

Q – Quiet.  Never enough of it.  As I get older I crave it more and more.

R – Running.  Love, love, love.  I write in my head the whole time.  A little treacherous this winter though (and I can’t stand treadmills and haven’t run on one in years).

S -Shoveling on Snow Days.  Endless.  Matt has skillfully avoided every single blizzard this winter, so I’m a Single Shoveler.

T – Trust.  My word of the year.

U –Universal Child by Annie Lennox.  Over and over and over again.

V -Vedder, Eddie.  Along with Universal Child, I am listening to Just Breathe, Rise, and Guaranteed on repeat.

W -Words With Friends.  Oh, my, how I love this game.  Especially against cmoorecanspell.

X – x-axis.  The one on which you generally display time.  The unavoidable progress of which is the echoing drumbeat at the heart of my life. (okay, a stretch.  work with me.)

Y – Yoga.  Not only am I returning to yoga, gradually but with a glad heart, I’m focusing on making it a real part of Grace’s life these days too.

Z – Zen.  With special thanks to Karen Maezen Miller, something I think about often these days.

Get Lindsey's thoughts on mindful living and parenting in your inbox


  1. Posted February 15, 2011 at 5:07 am | Permalink

    I want to try this!! But right now M is for Mexico!

  2. Posted February 15, 2011 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    Love this. And that Oyster Bay makes the all-important cut 🙂 Princeton 15th? Can’t wait for the stories. And Kripalu? Crossing my fingers!

  3. Posted February 15, 2011 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    a beautiful ritual, lindsey. i profoundly feel the grace, ease and presence you write often eludes you alive in your right now alphabet. inspiring. xo

  4. Amy
    Posted February 15, 2011 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc, running and yoga. Three of my favorite things 🙂

  5. Posted February 15, 2011 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Such a lovely idea! Remarkably (or maybe not so much) we might share some letters. A (my college roommate Alison – one l) ,B, D, F, P (but for Penn). I noticed you didnt have a Q? Maybe quiet? Or quagmire? Quaint? I may have to try this soon enough. 🙂

    admin Reply:

    Oh my! I need to add a Q. Qareless???

  6. Posted February 15, 2011 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    LOVE this!! I may have to steal it for my own blog. Gives us such interesting glimpses into who you are. And btw, I TOTALLY want to go to trapeze school! xo

  7. Posted February 15, 2011 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    I love this, Lindsey, and I suspect I’ll be thinking about my own alphabet for a bit. It’s good to pause and be deliberate in the things that shape us, and this is a great way to slow down and be thoughtful.

  8. Posted February 15, 2011 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for revisiting this…I definitely want to try it too.

  9. Jennifer Murphy Wescott
    Posted February 15, 2011 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    Love this!! Now I want to do it…. adding to my list!!

  10. Posted February 15, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

    Such a great idea! And what a great writing exercise. I think it is amazing that you are getting Grace into Yoga too. What a great ritual for her to start.

  11. Posted February 15, 2011 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Does this mean you’ll play Boggle and Banagrams with me at Kripalu?? xoxo

  12. Posted February 15, 2011 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

    I love this idea. A couple of things struck me. One is how much I enjoy yoga and how it is probably the way I show myself love more than anything else. I have tried to get Kasanna to do it with me and she gets bored almost immediately. I wish we could do it together and am glad to hear you have been able to spark the interest in Grace.

    Also, Haven’t you have written at least once about how you are not very much into music? I think I remember I found that surprising coming from someone who is so moved by things. And yet, you often mention songs on here. Perhaps it is just that of, say, 100 songs there might be one that you really connect with?

    And, finally, I think you might be that token crazy running lady that every neighborhood has to have. You know the one, running in the cold, rain, snow, whatever. :)That is awesome.

  13. Posted February 15, 2011 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    Great post, great idea. We share an “I” among other letters. But in the “B” entry you made a mistake, tho; — this *is* real writing! “Be here now” extends to the written word, hon. If you wrote it and you felt it, it’s real. <3

  14. Posted February 16, 2011 at 1:03 am | Permalink

    An Alphabet of Right Now, love this concept!

    Trust is your word of the year, remembering that now, and how trust underlies all that we do, trust in ourselves, in each other, and the world around us…so many levels of it, you know?

  15. Posted February 16, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Permalink

    I definitely love this. I suspect I will be ruminating about my own alphabet. Inspiring as always Lindsey.

  16. Posted February 20, 2011 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

    What a fun way to celebrate your life “right now.” So wish you were coming to OR in June! Looking forward to chatting soon 🙂

4 Trackbacks

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by janeroper and lemead, lemead. lemead said: The alphabet of right now – […]

  2. By My Own Personal ABCs | Baby Squared on February 17, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    […] her real name!) who lives just a couple of towns over from me in Cambridge. She recently posted her “Alphabet of Right Now” in which she assigned a currently-relevant word or thought to each letter of the […]

  3. […] a week ago one of my new creative friends, Lindsey Mead, wrote a really neat blog post she called “The Alphabet of Right Now” in which she assigned each letter of the alphabet to something relevant in her current life.  […]

  4. By the alphabet of right now | You had me at neurotic on February 27, 2011 at 9:55 am

    […] a fan of lists, retrospectives and archives as I am, I knew when I saw it on Lindsey’s blog I wanted to create my own Alphabet of Right Now. There’s a lot going on with me that I […]