Friday, December 12, 2008

Polishing the Apple

Although it took 20 years, declaring myself a Writer proves actually to be the easy part. How terribly daunting it is to sit quietly before this empty yellow pad, considering what string of words might surface worthy of your, dear readers, attention. There is nothing for it, but to plunge in and follow the ink where it may lead.

Last week, in my men’s group, I asked hard questions about the fear that keeps me distracted from commitment to pursuing a creative life more in tune with the energy and passion so revitalized in my belly. Disguised as the noble need to support my family, I keep running from here to job sites, returning at night too tired to scribble with any coherence, much less profundity.

I have finally grasped the message in the Universe that doing something just because one should, but without the heart singing, is not necessarily lucrative or even productive. It can be an impediment, in fact. Without embracing our true passions, we are liable to waste away in miss-directions and inefficiencies, bleeding slowly and oh so painfully, to death.

A fear beyond finances, then, has kept me from spending my days with pen in hand, computer in lap, and guitar strung and strapped. This fear cannot be around production because whenever I have taken the time, words have flowed like so many blessings. It is a delight to rediscover so many songs and stories of the past then allow myself the luxury of an afternoon and fill more pages quickly.

In a fit of organizational determination this week (I still have unpacked clutter jammed in every corner), I uncovered files of stories complete with every rejection slip from countless submissions years ago. So many were devoid of personality of any kind, but a few were actually scrawled notes of encouragement, golden nuggets reminding me that though I had only a few articles actually in print, my stories had opened eyes, separated themselves somehow from the endless slush that wearies an editor’s intern.

One from Sy Safransky of The Sun was written as if we were friends and the next submission (that never came) would have all the right ingredients to finally make it to print. As two stories came back today with impersonal forms, I tacked this wonderful rejection to the wall just over my laptop where my eyes roam first, pausing for the right word, and considering if all this effort could ever possibly add up to anything positive, reassured that it might.

Also last week, I was gifted a LifeLine treatment, kinesthetic energy balancing at the cellular level, a form of natural healing. I asked about this fear and we worked on the idea that it would be OK if my creative endeavors could sustain me financially, an attempt to dispel the ever present sarcastic voice that judges “Yeah, right” when thinking about a career in the creative arts.

In so many lives, it would seem, the more we want to do something passionate, resonating from deep within our souls, the louder our voices claim that such an apple of temptation could never be grasped firmly. It describes the fall of Adam and Eve, after all, and takes such an inner strength and determination to overcome, to break these bonds that hold us back from re-entering the gardens of our dreams.

At the end of the session, the sarcasm had completely disappeared and I was filled with a sense of profound understanding. The same words presented with a completely different attitude, an embrace of love, confidence, understanding and gratitude, an emblem of the natural order of the Universe, full of breath:

“Yeah! Right!”

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1 comment:

Laurie said...

I understand your plight of the tug between your wallet and your heart. My hub just informed me that we outspent our income last month by 3100. It didn't help that the hub and the son went snow skiing but we would have still been over.

I am very excited about following my passion and I have made some money with the potential being promising but that start up time is very hard. A roll of the dice. I know I have something great but will it be worth many people paying for? Will my other ideas for income pay off? While my hub supports my dive into the waters of self employment, he also is clearly mourning the loss of my income. I feel like an asset more than a wife.

I am cheering you on Kip as you figure out how to make the transfer from one existence to the other. I am shaking my pom poms as you go through the trauma of labor and experience a rebirth into the world of your passion. Never doubt yourself. You are worthy to have success and the life you want.