creative support for times of change

a package deal

The last few weeks I’ve noticed that, along with the daffodils and the bright green shoots on the trees, I too feel like I’m coming alive again. I see it reflected in my energy level, my day timer, and the number of community adventures I’m embarking on. My hibernation period appears to be over.

Being alive is a package deal though, alongside the joy and excitement comes a certain measure of pain and fear. You need the whole spectrum to feel at all.

Despite the mixed package, I’m glad I’m here right now. I recognize that over this past year I have been cultivating new perspectives and habits. Like learning to choose between equally delicious possibilities. Like allowing more empty space for me to follow my bodies cues in that moment. Like re-engaging with my vision, my dreams – and adding some new features. Like learning how to accept loss and move on.

I spent most of last Saturday reading a novel – though I’d hoped to do a long bike ride and attend a birthday party. I let myself choose an extended period of quiet, restful solitude instead. I decided to take care of myself in this way knowing I might be missing a great opportunity (meeting other horse people) and worse, might be disappointing someone. I trusted that those opportunities will come again. I trusted that if I did disappoint, they will understand and forgive me. I listened to my body and trusted its message of need, not my brain telling me what I ‘should’ do. I trusted my instincts.

I am surprised to discover that my reignited dreams of another renovation project are largely fueled by a desire for the barn to once again be a retreat space for workshops I want to lead here. This past year has helped me gain a better understanding of why this is important to me. My creative juices are stirred up as I begin to address each of the hurdles that are part of reaching that dream. What feels different this time is that I am approaching it with more patience, a sense of letting things unfold in their own time. I am embellishing the vision and will let it move forward in little steps as they present themselves.

As for pain, loss and all those things…well that I just have to accept as part of the journey. I am learning to ride those waves knowing that other feelings will follow soon enough. I let the tears flow and then go for a walk in the woods, or to a community meeting/event, or I write a song. I know I can influence what I allow my mind to focus on. And right now I choose health, music, community, beauty, friendship, family, learning, nature, renovations, and my vision, to name a few.

All in all, as I reflect, I’d say there is much more joy than pain in this current package. Good to notice.