“We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” T.S. Eliot
In April of 2018, I made a promise to myself before I started to walk the 111 km on El Camino to Santiago de Compostela. I decided that whatever happens between the beginning of the journey at Sarria and the destination at El Cathedral of St. James, I would do my best to listen to my intuition and fall in love with my life again. In that vein, I had to muster all that I could to walk through the pain, the doubts and my ever present fears to place one foot in front of the other to arrive at my destination. And, on the last day, after 5 days of questioning my “why”, I finally decided to finish the ride paying attention to my needs and marching to the beat of my own drum. Any other way, I would not stay true to that promise.
Now that 2019 has begun, I know that journey of love continues. In that respect, I can think of no better way to begin my year of magic than to start 12 weeks of rediscovering my creative self once again with Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. Arriving at the same point where I started, I have done this twice before, I have high hopes that with eyes filled with love I will know this place in my life for the first time. In love the field of potential and everyone who crosses my path, I set out excited to see the something wonderfuls about to unfold again.
As I stated, I have signed the Contract to complete this intensive guided encounter with my own creativity twice before, starting in June 2011 and June 2013 . This time, I got even more excited to sign because I have hard fast evidence that I have come so far coupled with this being the year I declared for Magic. Grabbing my new journal to execute my morning pages and batting around ideas for Artist’s Dates, I cracked open the guide once again to begin to recover a sense of safety for the first week. Having just finished the book by Hal Elrod, Miracle Mornings, I am overjoyed that others have succeeded with similar tools to further enjoyment of the journey.
And, no better way to start the process than to begin to create that safe, sacred space to explore fears that still remain so that I can be more vulnerable to healing. In order to love all of this, I have started the writing pages again. No surprise that my same demons continue to show up. Now, the great surprise is that their illusory power over me is not at intense as it used to be, And, this week, for my Artist Date, I have planned a professional photo shoot for the cover of my upcoming new book collaborations. Terrifying to even think about it, but fears assuaged by the mastery of the professional chosen.
My value seems to be coming up for me over and over again. After finishing the prologue of my memoir, it is not surprising that my relationship with my mother as a child coupled with a incessant lack of self worth and confidence still haunts me. Nevertheless, while I have done a great job keeping these old useless themes at bay, when I do get tired from struggling and striving, the old insecurities and negative self talk rear their ugly head.
There is a great part of this chapter that emboldens all that I have accomplished over the last 49 years. It is clearly a magical way to approach a lack of esteem any time of the day. As an attorney who used to craft arguments for a living, the “Letter to the Editor” heals the wounded artist child. With my champions by my side, the Bellas, the Teachers, the Godwinks, I wrote a persuasive argument in favor of all that is good within me. No apologies, my words clearly set forth in no uncertain terms that if others don’t appreciate the value of what I set out to do in this world, quoting a very wise man (the Poppie) “Screw them!” There is no time to defend any point of view if my intentions are solid.
How I feel is so important, how I make other people feel important as well! But, if you try to please everyone in life, you are chasing waterfalls and will never be happy. And after all, the point of this life that I promised to fall in love with, is to enjoy the miracle of it all. From a safe, sacred place at first, you find your tribe and hold them tight. They have your back and will show up for you giving you the benefit of the doubt when you screw up. (As a human being, it is a given that will happen.)
I love the notion that we are all masterpieces and works of progress simultaneously. It is so empowering to see our beautiful lives that way. When I feel like I get beat up by life and its toxicity, I go into beat up myself mode as well. As if I needed any more help to knock myself down! But over and over again, when I feel safe again, I clear my head and decide to go back to that promise to see my life with eyes of love. When I love life, knowing that I do what I do to add to the beauty of the world, everything I experience life changes. Knowing that I have a voice now to protect the voiceless child within, I self-validate instead of seeking approval from others.
Very freeing, very self-loving and more love is all we need. And, as T.S. Elliot sets forth above, “We (together) shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” Let this time be magical!
Come S.H.I.N.E. Love with us!