My musings on my creative journey have been at a bit of a standstill for the past few months. Creative journeys are quirky, unpredictable things. They certainly don’t follow a straight, obvious path.
For example, I was in a really good writing rhythm for most of the year, doing some writing almost every weekday. But then we decided on November 11 (Veteran’s Day — that’s how I remember) that we wanted to move out of our one-bedroom condo into somewhere that actually had space for all our pursuits. We’re closing on January 14th on a cute little house with a barn that will be perfect for my studio and my husband’s woodworking shop and bike-building space, but in the whirlwind of home-buying, I only worked on my novel twice or three times in the rest of November and all of December. And I’m SO close to being finished — maybe 30 more pages to revise.
And at the end of October, just as Anam Cara Dance Company was getting ready for several big performances, I developed a blood clot in my leg and couldn’t dance for several weeks. I missed all the important rehearsals and couldn’t perform. Then the whirlwind of home-buying kept me from even going to class for all of December. When I had to miss the Anam Cara Christmas party at the last minute, my frustration came out in a LOT of tears.
But in these same few months, I made this:
So why did I feel such despair about ‘my creative journey’? Could it be because it didn’t go MY way? I wanted to move forward on a logical, step-by-step path, working for designated amounts of time each week on each of my pursuits: my novel, belly dancing, the henna motif costume items I sell on Magic Carpet Dance Arts, silversmithing, etc. When it didn’t work out that way, I got MAD. MY journey was getting messed up. MY plan wasn’t coming together.
But it’s not mine.
I’ve heard so many artists say they had to learn to serve their art. They had to let it have its freedom to be a living thing. They had to let go of control. They had to listen to their art. They had to stop forcing it, trying to squeeze it into being THEIR vision. And that’s when they did their best work.
So instead of a whole batch of New Year’s resolutions about how much time I want to spend each week on each of my pursuits, I want to choose something else:
- listening to my art
- serving the creative force inside of me
- following my inner child
- letting go
Here’s to 2011!