I have changed up my blog. The reason is that I am changing up my life. And instead of waiting for a sign, waiting for inspiration I am just doing it. Like it’s my JOB. If I keep waiting for it to feel exactly right I don’t think I will get much accomplished. I want to begin creating the life I want. Yes, I have been doing that all along, and I have had a great year in terms of my work but it is not what I want to be doing. I want to be writing and illustrating children’s books. I have been researching it for years. I know alot about it. But I have yet to do very much towards it. Instead I keep doing the safe things, the things that I know. Don’t get me wrong I do love to paint dogs, and do design work and paint murals, but the thing that really makes my heart sing is children’s book. When I go into a children’s book store I get teary. My soul feels as if it could burst with what I am surrounded by. My soul feels at home somehow. I know with all my heart I am supposed to be doing this. And I keep letting fear or this, or that stop me. I need to go after this dream of mine and see where it will lead me. I don’t know if this blog is to document my journey or hold me accountable to myself by putting it in print. I keep telling people I have taken the fall off from art festivals because I needed a break. I wanted to do design work because it is easier money in the bank. Both are true. But the real reason is I was readying up space in my life for my dream. I needed to carve out time to work on my book. I need to put up an illustration site for editors and agents to look at. It is not time because I had a dream or a divine moment – altho that would be nice!- it is because if I want this in my life I am the only one that can make it happen.
Tomorrow I am joining the SCBWI and finding a local chapter to critique my art and my writing. I will post here as I make progress. I willpost useful information as I find it out incase any one is interested. I am going after a dream. And it is scary. But I have always said that the difference between people who live their dreams and those that don’t is one of them finally decided to try. It’s time to try.
I just got inside from taking my dogs out. Remember them? Yes, I still have the two giant sloppy dogs. So sweet. Love them. It is so chilly out. The light is beautiful as the sun is coming up shining through the fall colors. Fall makes me hopeful. I feel this way much more in fall instead of spring. Not sure why, I just do. This year is differnt though. It makes me sad for something. As if I am missing something but I don’t know what it is yet. I am going on a year of separation now. The divorce is not final. Not really supposed to write about it here. Maybe that explains to many of you why I have been so sporadic in my posting. Still can’t explain much. Not that I would put the details of a divorce up for public consumption, but I would like to talk about my feelings. it isn’t easy. And anyone that says people get divorced too easily has not gone through the gut wrenching decision to do it or the slow painful process of it. It is more pain than I have ever endured. It is the hardest thing i have ever gone through. This was not the life I thought I would have at 32. But it is my life. It is what I have and I can choose to boo hoo over it or take what i have and still love it. Most days I do. After all, it is the only life I have. But some days I don’t love it. Some days I feel like a little girl stomping her foot asking why I couldn’t have what I wanted. I see other people and read other journals and wonder why they have what I don’t. But I do understand that we all have our moments. No one has a perfect life. Some days we shine brighter than others. Some days we stay under the covers just waiting until tomorrow. Today is a gorgeous fall day and i want to shine. Maybe I will. Hard to tell yet. But I have a hot cup of tea, I have a wonderful pile of work to do which means my bills are getting paid, I have a wonderful pile of personal art to do which means my heart is getting fullfilled. Life may not be what I thought it would be, but it is mine. And I love it nonetheless.
My daughter had her first swim meet this past Saturday. I couldn’t have been more proud and my eyes were brimming with tears as she swam the second length of the freestyle back towards me. It was a freestyle relay with four swimmers. The swimmers on her team are younger and all beginners and as Sophie was the last leg she was the only one swimming in the pool. Everyone else was done by a great length. But all the parents for both teams were rooting her on to the end. She never gave up, she never wavered. She heard everyone cheering for her and I saw her give one last burst of energy at the end and her little body shot forward and she touched the end. As she got out she was beaming from ear to ear. She came over and hugged me and said, “Did you see me mama??!!” I did it! And I was so tired, but I tried so hard at the end!” I could not have been prouder. She never even noticed that she was the last one out of the pool. She only heard the cheering and the congratulations.
On the way to the meet we were driving and she was very quiet. I asked if she was ok. She said, “Well, yes, but I have so many butterflies in my tummy.” I told her that buttterflies were a very good thing. Butterflies mean we are trying something new that we don’t know how it will turn out. And a lifetime without butterflies would mean a lifetime of not challenging ourself and always knowing the outcome. Butterflies mean fear and fear means stretching ourselves, having adventures. Maybe we try way too hard to avoid fear because it makes us feel uncomfortable. Maybe if we use fear more as an indicator that we are actually living life we wouldn’t try so hard to feel safe and avoid differnt things. Because life is abut living and trying, not just feeling comfortable. Sophie thought this all sounded pretty good. “I’ll try to like my butterflies mama, even if they are making me want to throw up.”