|Ornamental grass, November 24, 2011, in our backyard…|
Do you see my “About Me” section in the sidebar to the right? I came up with that years ago well before I started this blog, and so I have somewhat blurred the words into the back of my mind.
Um… Laura, are you OK?
Of course! I’ll explain: There are many times when the words we write – whether as bloggers, as artists, or as moms as many of you are – become so routine with us that we don’t see them even when they are right in front of us. It isn’t that their meaning isn’t as true or as heartfelt. It’s just that we’ve seen the words so often that our mind summarizes them for us and then we’re off to the next bit of words, or the next image, or the next item on our ever-lengthening To Do lists.
Case in point:
On Monday, after I published my latest Handmade Earrings Addiction post, I went over to my Etsy account to “Convo” [message] each jewelry designer to let them know I had featured them. This also is a routine task, although one I enjoy as it usually results in some enjoyable conversations back and forth with other Etsy folks.
Here’s where it gets interesting. One of the many replies I received was from Cyndia of BlackWaterSiren on Etsy. (Cyndia’s earrings that I featured are these stunning handmade Skull Pirate earrings.) In just a few sentences, Cyndia snapped me back into the present, where words you’ve written and seen over and over are not merely blurred into the back of your mind.
Here’s part of what Cyndia wrote:
Thank you for choosing my earrings! I am very honored. I’ve posted the link to your blog on my Facebook page. I was skimming through your About Me part; I don’t think you got the words wrong on the whole-made cards, I think that’s a lot more accurate of a description of hand-made. We artists use our whole beings to create art with. I think you were very astute, as children often are, and absolutely correct. Out of the mouths of babes, as they say, you said the truth more simply and accurately than most adults could ever admit to. Whole-made = Bravo!
Wow. I just sat there, actually seeing my words again through someone’s eyes who read those words for the first time. And I loved her reaction to those words. Very much. So I wrote her back to thank her, because she truly made my day, giving me something to think about and bringing me back into the present. I also asked her if I could share her words here with you, to which she agreed.
And she added this:
Of course, you can put it on your blog. It’s great to know that something I said had that much impact.
It’s just that I see so many people, particularly artists (and including myself sometimes), sell themselves short because we have swallowed the introject, the myth, propagated by jealous peers that it’s not appropriate to “show off” – when all we are doing is being natural and reveling in our own joy of what we have achieved. Instead, we start to doubt our abilities, believe more in what others think rather than our own wisdom, shroud our light until it is so diminutive it becomes unrecognizable, even to ourselves.
You’ll see how prolific this introject has become by observing how many people say, “I’d love to do that but I’m not at all creative.” What bunk. If we all would just stop this social nonsense and start putting ourselves back together again, back to the way we began, we could make ourselves whole again; whole-made.