Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Saturday, May 28, 2011
On the first day of my Spanish class in junior high school the teacher asked us to pick Spanish names to be used in class instead of our regular names. Our text book contained a list of Spanish names and their interpretations in English. I skimmed over the list and saw nothing that inspired me – until I got to Esperanza – which meant HOPE. That was going to be MY name, because at that point in my life, hope for the future was all I had. For, you see I was a victim of bullying during my school years. I still to this day don’t know why, but I accept the fact that it happened and that it will always be a part of the history of my life. There comes a time, however, when you need to stop being the victim and take back control of your life.
One of the exercises in Week Four of The Artist’s Way is to write a letter to yourself at eight years of age, giving yourself advice. This is what I wrote,
“Lynn, you are going to go through some very tough times while you are growing up. It may seem like years and years before you break free from this emotional abuse. But it WILL happen after you graduate from high school. Persevere and have hope for a better future. Dream big dreams. Don’t lose your confidence and self-esteem, though this may seem inevitable. You are a VERY SPECIAL PERSON and no one can take that away from you. Don’t lose the spirit, imagination, and spontaneity that you now have.”
If someone – anyone - had said this to me during those years, it may have made them easier to bear, but all I had was hope.
The second part of the exercise asks you to write a letter to yourself at eighty. What would you tell yourself? What interests would you pursue? What dreams would you encourage? To me, this seemed to be a very hopeful exercise, because we were talking about my future. And I had control over that. If I didn’t accomplish what I wanted to do during this time period, all I could blame is myself. Here is what I wrote,
“Keep creating your jewelry, your watercolors, and playing the piano you so longed to have when you were a child. Don’t let distractions or anxieties prevent you from pursuing these things. This will be your legacy. Don’t say “shoulda woulda coulda” when you get to be eighty. Just do it! Keep learning new things. Make friends that will be there to support you in your declining days. Travel the world. Capture it in art. Share this with others. Love each person you meet, no matter what. Live life fully one day at a time. Take nothing for granted."
What letters would YOU write to yourself at eight and eighty?
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
“A connecting principle
Linked to the invisible
Logic so inflexible
Yet nothing is invincible
If you act, as you think
The missing link
(The Police, Sting 1983)
Synchronicity is officially defined as: A coincidence of events that seem related. But is it coincidence or answered prayer? It depends on your opinion of things spiritual. I truly believe that there is something or someone out there that brings these things to pass. It happens to me quite frequently nowadays.
Here’s my simple definition: Everything works together.
Some other quotes mentioned by Julia Cameron in chapter three of “The Artists’ Way”:
“A thousand unseen helping hands.” - Joseph Campbell
“A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man would have believed come his way.” - W.H. Murray , explorer
“Whatever you think you can do, or believe you can do, Begin it. Action has magic, grace and power in it.” – Goethe
The last quote has a special meaning to me. My husband bought a pendant to inspire me that had a tree pierced out of a small square of metal layered over another piece of metal that had Goethe’s quote inscribed in teeny tiny little letters on it.
Some of The Artists Way workbook exercises involve recording synchronistic events in your life. It’s amazing once you begin writing them down, how you see they all start to fit together to help make your dream or goals come to pass.
Here is a great example for me: A few years ago, I attended an “Art & Community” meeting at a local art gallery. My special interest was art for senior citizens. My mom, who will be 89 in couple of weeks, used to take classes all the time through the senior center. When my Dad became ill and had to be taken care of at home for 10 years, she could no longer take them. After he passed away, she did not resume taking classes. When I asked why, she noted that the classes often got cancelled due to lack of enrollment. Before going into this meeting I had determined that I wanted to teach jewelry making to senior citizens. I wanted to get a discussion going on having more art classes for seniors in our city.
Now here’s the interesting part. There were 2 ladies sitting next to me. I thought one looked VERY familiar. Part way into the meeting, this lady brought up the topic of art for seniors. My ears perked up! After the meeting, I approached these ladies and struck up a conversation about how I, too, shared their interests. I also mentioned that I thought I might know one of them. I asked her name. She told me who she was. Turned out she was my department manager from the early 1980’s when I was working my way through college (the first time) at Kohl’s Department Store! In our discussion, I remember telling her that she told me something that I will never forget. She said I was a hard worker. She was now the Dean of Business & Industry at the technical college I had just received my jewelry repair and fabrication degree from! ( I wish I could say I had done so well over the last 25-30 years, but that’s what happens when you change careers 3 times…) Now get this! The lady she was with was the person who coordinates the classes for seniors through the tech school! Well, you can better believe I then took the opportunity to put a pitch in for teaching a jewelry making class, which they had never offered before. So anyway… a few months later I ended up getting a teaching job and a very important source of income from this synchronous meeting. I love when things happen like this.
I used to say stuff like this never happened to me. I guess that’s because I never expected it to. You have to believe that these little “miracles” will happen and be ready and waiting for them when they show up. And for goodness’ sake, TAKE the gifts and be thankful for them. Do NOT give them back.
What about you? Do you have any interesting stories about synchronicity to share?
Source: More lyrics: http://www.lyricsfreak.com/s/sting+police/#share