What Word Describes You?
“I am just a slippery antevasin—betwixt and between, a student on the ever-shifting border near the wonderful, scary forest of the new.” (Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat Pray Love.)
People are complex. I was recently asked, via a social networking site, to describe my best friend using a single word. I couldn’t do it. I think I used about seven, and still I didn’t feel that I’d captured every part of her. When I started trying to think of a word for myself, I got a headache. This made me think of a scene in Eat Pray Love: Elizabeth Gilbert is in Rome, and a friend explains to her that every city and every person has one word to describe them. Rome’s word, he says, is “sex.” The Vatican’s word is “power.” Gilbert is able to think of a word for New York (“achieve”) but has trouble coming up with one for herself. Later in the book, she finds this Sanskrit word: antevasin, meaning “one who lives at the border.”
Can you think of one word to describe and encompass yourself? Do you think this word will change as your life changes, or that it will stay the same your entire life? Do you want it to?