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Wish List

Do you tell anyone what you’re wishing for?

When I was little, I had a white ceramic piggy bank. For a long time I was puzzled by the words emblazoned on the side: For My Convertible. Truth be told, I loved that piggy bank solely because it was encrusted with faux plastic jewels. Two tiny keys were glued atop the pig’s head. I never knew where the bank came from; the plug for the bottom was lost. I sealed it with tape and wadded up paper and occasionally deposited coins in the wide slot in the center of the pig’s back. Mostly, though, I tried to chip those jewels off, certain that they must be the items of value, not the coins within or the mysterious convertible I was saving for.

I did not know that a convertible was a car until long after the piggy bank was broken. And it was only when I started wishing for a convertible of my own that I finally understood what those tiny keys represented and what the slogan meant. Had the bank still existed then, I certainly would have deposited all of my loose change within.

Today I could have a tidy army of “for my … ” piggy banks lined up. My wish lists both at home and for the studio are remarkably long. It’s not that I’m seeking to acquire a lot of shiny toys—quite the contrary, I’m wishing for necessities like refinished wood floors and new carpets and a battery-powered lawn mower for home. For work a refrigerator and a filing cabinet would be able assistants in my daily responsibilities. These are just a few of the priorities.

Twelve, who will turn into Thirteen in just a few days, was Three when I was pregnant with his sister. At three he was fascinated by throwing pennies into fountains. Although most of my change went into a jar at home set aside for vacations, I would save a few pennies for him to toss with glee into the water, watching them swirl to the bottom. As the due date for his sister grew closer, he started to wish out loud when he tossed the coins in the water: “I wish my sister would come.”

My superstitious self wanted to warn him—don’t share your wish or it won’t come true. Wasn’t that what I had learned? After blowing out the candles on the cake or seeing the first star, didn’t you make your wish quietly to yourself and then smile with your secret, never breathing a word of it out loud? But he was three and what he was wishing for was going to happen, one way or another. And I found myself loving the freedom with which he tossed those coins and wished aloud.

Maybe there are different types of wishes, some of them secrets even perhaps from ourselves. Secret longings may best be whispered under the breath, but these are supernova wishes, the stuff of fantasies. What about the wishes that could come true? Rather than keep them quiet, is there truth to the theory that you need to put it out there in order to realize your hopes and dreams? Perhaps it isn’t be careful what you wish for, but take care with how you wish for something to come true.

Beyond a fridge, for the studio I’m wishing for a Roomba, maybe two. A luxury? I don’t know. I love the idea of tiny bots zooming around the yoga studio cleaning it when I’m not there. My daughter, Nine, loves Hex Bugs, those battery-powered toys that behave like bugs, turning and skittering away when they encounter a wall, getting locked together when they smack into one another. I think of the Roomba as being a similar critter, but one that would earn its keep by vacuuming up the lint and dust and real bug detritus that inevitably litter the studio floor.

It’s my responsibility to clean that floor and the rest of Radiant Om Yoga along with it. I tell myself it’ll take two hours midday Thursdays, but the truth is it’s more like three and a half hours and often I need to split the tasks out over several days. I have 2800 square feet to clean, high and low, and while none of it is strenuous or untenable, I can’t help but think there’re other things I could be doing instead.

Is it boring to wish for cleaning devices, working appliances and shiny floors? Like Almost-Thirteen, I wished hard for his and his sister’s arrivals. I wished, too, for a studio home of my own. These were big wishes, complicated by the requirements of real life and the hard work that goes into bringing a dream into being. They are, however, wishes that came true and I am grateful for them every single day.

It was easier, the year I turned 41, to buy my first convertible. It’s every bit as much fun as I hoped it would be, and since it’s my only car and it has a bad habit of needing expensive repairs, on my grand wish list is my next convertible. Although broken parts and dust bunnies can’t exactly be wished away, most of the items on my wish list revolve around organized clean spaces, with new or replaced parts so that home and work are more comfortable or more pleasant and less chaotic. So, yeah, I wish for a Roomba because it would hoover up the dust bunnies and save me a few steps. When things are neat and clean and organized, and better still when things become neat and clean and organized because there’s a system or the right tool in place for the job, life’s chaos backs off just a little bit. And when the chaos backs off, there’s room for my mind and my heart to roam. That is at the center of all of my wishes right now—making less chaos and more time.

Here’s a wish I’m not afraid to share: I wish for more time. What would I do with free time? Well, catch up on sleep, a little, read more, work on my writing, and enjoy time with friends and family, sure. But more than anything I like the idea of taking a walk or staring out of a window and figuring out what I may be yearning for—the next big, big, big wish, the next thing that’s going to take hard work and a little luck and clear vision—just what are those supernova wishes?

The new moon shines on April as our changeable spring continues. In honor of Earth Day,

The organized tools I use to keep Radiant Om Yoga, well, radiant.

I’m wondering why they don’t make a Roomba for lawns … hoping all of your wishes come true, xoR


About Robin Bourjaily

I currently perform my own stunts as a mother, writer, editor, yoga instructor, and certified Yoga As Muse facilitator. Overneath It All is a medium for sharing my stories--my commitment is to post on the full and new moons, plus or minus a day or two, and the occasional personal holiday. My novel, Throwing Like a Girl, is now available in e-formats on Smashwords. Please visit to download. Thanks for checking in. xoR

4 responses »

  1. You’re ending with a question because the questions still remain. Thanks for this morning’s gift – another thoughtful message.

  2. Remember Liz’s seva days where students can give back to the studio by helping clean twice a year? You would still have to be there to supervise, but it might not take as long as it takes you alone. Wishing out loud for practical things seems like a good idea to me, too. Sacred secrets are a must! Thank you for the thoughts!

    • So sweet & thoughtful Jeanne. Love the term “sacred secrets.” Certainly a deep-cleaning crew would be lovely, but as studio host and shepherd, I feel a duty to keep the space lovely for your practice. That may be a part of my practice … still, I’ll give it some thought! Thank you.


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