This blog. Oh this blog of mine …. sigh….
The life of this blog parallels my creative life.
Busy blog, creativity flowing; stagnant blog, creativity fading.
Today, for the first time in a long time, my camera went with me on my walk. It used to be, that it would be more likely that I would forget my shoes than leave my camera when I went out the door. For years, that’s just the way it was.
But lately, since winter last year, my camera and I have gone our separate ways – me, busy with whatever it is I do all day, every day (often a bit of a mystery), – my camera patiently gathering dust in it’s latest bag.
And, not far from my camera bag, it’s possible you may find my Creative Self. I’m guessing that’s where she may be, I’m not really sure where I left her.
The loss (or misplacement) of my Creative Self leaves me vaguely empty and unhappy. It’s a feeling that something tremendously important is missing, but I can’t quite remember what it is….
Impulses, fleeting thoughts, flying in and out, slipping away before I can hang onto them – urging me to read, write, paint, mediate, take a class, join a club – take pictures! Share them!
I don’t make space for any of these thoughts, and all the old mental habits fill my days. And I just keep doing what I always do, robotically. Cleaning, running errands, keeping up, doing chores, taking care of … well … everything.
But this morning, something shifted. Perhaps it was the autumn energy blowing in with that strong south wind, or possibly the new moon energy rising tonight.
A quote popped up in my inbox and it stuck. It really went into my mind and stopped there, instead of drifting through (as almost everything in my email tends to do).
“My experience is what I agree to attend to.”
Thank you, William James.
And then, directly on the heels of Mr. James came Aristotle:
“We are what we repeatedly do.”
Obviously, this is not new information, but sometimes words carry something more than just meaning. Sometimes there’s a message attached, an energy that just sinks into your being and becomes part of who you are and everything you understand to be true.
I realized that the loss of my Creative Self is a choice. I repeat that choice every day.
If I want creativity to be part of my life, I must give it my time, my attention and my energy. Repeatedly.
So now… writing this …. I am attending to my Creative Self.
Taking pictures, posting them, sharing them (even though they are not the stunners I would like them to be) …. I am attending to my Creative Self.
It’s my choice to be an artist. It’s my choice to make art important in my life. I must choose it over and over again, each and every day. If I don’t, I will have a clean house and an organized life, but I will be empty inside and feel my life is half lived.
So, although I recognize that the armies of inner resistance are gathering and weaponizing, even as I write this, I must be willing to fight for the creative life. It will never magically appear.
If I truly, deeply want to embrace the ‘art of ageing artfully’, I must nourish, nurture and attend my quiet, shy and elusive Creative Self.
My journey begins today.
Thank you for joining me,