Pronunciation: \ˈgu̇d\
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English, from Old English gōd; akin to Old High German guot good, Middle High German gatern to unite, Sanskrit gadhya what one clings to
Date: before 12th century

1 a (1) : of a favorable character or tendency, being positive or desirable in nature; not bad or poor.

I have a visceral, instinctive and emotional reaction to the word “good”. The word itself has so many deep meanings for me.

As a small child I was told “you are such a good girl” in that loving,  high-pitched voice that is usually reserved for babies and puppies. As I got older that would change to a request to “be good” and make sure you “do good” at school. Grade school years were filled with daily lessons in what was “good” and what wasn’t. This was especially true since I went to a Lutheran grade and high school, where there was the addition of the “good” and bad of religion and all of its expectations. It was also at this time that I began to learn about not “good” enough.  It was where I got my first taste that being “good” could be a bad thing.  You don’t want to be too “good”, good grades, good at sports, good at speaking.  You don’t want to stand out too much….that wouldn’t be “good”.

High school was absolutely the time of “not good enough” for me. I’ve since learned that I wasn’t alone in this feeling.  This launched me into my 20’s, a decade of I’ll try anything, go anywhere and everything “outside of me” is good.  The absolute goodness of my dog Montana, the goodness of my nephew and holding him after he was born.  The goodness of friends and experiences. The frustration of accepting “good enough” in my life and the dreams of some day being….more.

My 30’s have been a time of reflection and growth.  What is the right…”good”… career for me?  What friends are “good” for me and have my best interests at heart.  What am I “good at” and am I willing to take the leap to live an authentic life…a “good” life.  I have been filled to the brim with the goodness of my family and my partner Dan.  During this time in my life, the question has also lost its intensity,  interest and voice:

Am I GOOD enough?  Am I good enough?  (am i good enough?)

Yes, “good” job Beth~

Another way in which the word “good” speaks to my senses is the repetition of the four “o’s” in its appearance.  There is something about the word itself, its shape, that draws me in.  This is in its lower case form.  The perfection of the four circles with the fine line of the “g” and the “d”.  Circles are good.  It reminds me of first learning to print on that paper they give you in preschool with the  two lines and the dotted one in the center.  I remember writing this word over and over again.  I’ve often thought that someday I would get the word “good” tattooed on my wrist.  Like a stamp of approval and a reminder of how far I’ve come in my life.    Of how “good” life can be…is.  Of how good it feels to create and see the world through my unique view.  Of how good it feels to be in the moment, and the next moment….and the next.  Of how deeply I believe that everything that happens in my life is in my favor…whether “good” or not.  That through the “good” and bad, there is growth.

The word “good” is all around my studio and home.  As sketches, paintings, collages and jewelry I’ve made.  It feels “good” to see these, to have them near me.  It feels “good” to be authentically… “ME” and “good” to share “circlesaregood” and a piece of myself with all of you.

Is there a word or shape that resonates with you?  Why do you think that is and how does it show up in our life?

This entry was published on April 23, 2010 at 12:20 am. It’s filed under Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

2 thoughts on “good

  1. slobo on said:

    Love all the pictures representing “good”…fun little surprises that were there for me to discover along the way. Good article by an awesome friend. Thanks for sharing.

  2. “Good” question. 🙂
    I’m not sure what words resonate with me -especially visually. Which of course is interesting as an exploration of how different things capture different people’s attention. I also love your exploration of ‘good’ – historically and meaning. Nice to remember that we carry all of those definitions with us – and then we can choose.
    I’ve put you on my rss feed 🙂

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