Real Friends

Tell me how you are feeling, she told him. I mean, really feeling.

Fine, he said.

Not the dressed up, phony, everything is fine kind of feeling, but the raw, real, take it or stuff it kind of feeling. She looked at him, one eyebrow raised, her whole stance a challenge.

Why would you want me to do that? He mirrored the same look.

That will mean we can be friends. Real friends. She wasn’t sure he was up for it.

Got an hour or two? he asked, and his voice broke a little. Just enough to tell her he really meant it.

Just Talk

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Another Door

I saw this door, she said, and just knew that if I crossed the threshold, I would see something that would cause my whole life to change.

What happened when you went in? he asked.

Are you kidding? Her eyes became teary. I didn’t dare! No-one would recognize me after I came out. 

Were you ever sorry you didn’t risk it? He put his hand to her cheek.

Every day of my life. She looked down.

He lifted her face again, and looked in her eyes. Then we’ll find another door.


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A Longer View

What is inscribed in your heart?

What wish or hope or dream that you dare not even whisper but which you sometimes admit you must have or you will surely die?

Believe that feeling. Do not dismiss it as wishful thinking or pie in the sky or a crazy dream.

It is every bit as important to nourish the spirit as it is to feed the stomach. It just takes a longer view to realize it.


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A New Map

You know that awful art work you have hidden away? The one you conceived with such excitement, and began with such high hopes?

Now, it languishes, out of sight, and you feel guilty, mad, or sad any time you think of it.

What artists with works like this need to face is whether their life is following the same pattern.

Those early ideas, the ones that don’t feel good anymore, can be tossed. Yesterday’s map made sense at one point in the journey, but your destination has changed. Or needs to change, otherwise why would you be stuck?

Look at your art (and life) with fresh eyes and ask, What next?

Then plunge in and do something ~ anything ~ to get your energy flowing again.

Getting There

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Over the Moon

I’m getting lots of hugs at work this week.

I’ve been pretty emotional in my classes, because I know this is the last I’ll see of the wonderful little people who have filled my life with their smiles, energy, and open-ness for so long.

They sense that I am experiencing something that makes my presence feel different than usual. They may not be able to grasp the finality of my good-byes (they are only 4 and 5 years old, after all), but they are giving me extra hugs to show that they care back.

Caring works that way.

On the one hand, I feel the sadness of leaving a good career. On the other, I am over the moon to be embarking on a full time artist life, at last.

Over the Moon

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Poised to Take the Plunge

This month, I end my journey as a school teacher and embark, with full sails flying, on my full-time artist life.

I have dreamed of being a full-time artist since I was old enough to know what that meant, and am finally poised to take the plunge.

Throughout my life, I succumbed to the conventional wisdom that you can’t make a living as an artist. What conventional wisdom doesn’t tell you is that you must really watch out for soul death if you don’t let that inner artist out often enough.

It didn’t matter how busy things got in the work-a-day world, I kept making art.

I knew my life depended on it. Art kept me sane.

Journey’s End

Well, as sane as I’ll ever be.

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A whirlwind of activity can be exhilarating ~ for a while.

However, a whirlwind can develop into a tornado, where everything in its path is levelled, including your art practice.

It is far too easy to be forever busy, but never really accomplish something of substance.

You have what it takes to produce substance within you. Make time for it. Honor it.

Share it.

Reap the Whirlwind

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Meet Half Way

Compromise is over-rated.

We are always being told to compromise, to meet others half way, to make sure we get along.

Wouldn’t it be better if we were told it is absolutely fine to be ourselves, that we should NOT compromise on those things that were essential to our being?

I always wanted my parents to let go and let me go. By “let go,” I mean do their own thing, not the things that were expected of them.

Sometimes they managed, but usually the opinions of others were too overwhelming. It became impossible to buck the flow of whatever group they were part of. It’s like one sheep telling the others to flock off.

Does that sound sadly familiar? How many people are joyfully engaged in what they really want to do? How many people even know what that is after years of doing what they think they should?

Meet in the Middle

I certainly hope YOU know what you really REALLY need to do to make your heart sing, or are at least actively engaged in finding out.

I’m listening.

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Watch What You Start

Many people are all bent out of shape over their huge array of unfinished projects.

That is an issue, no doubt, but equally important is to watch what you start because you may fall into a rabbit hole so deep, you will not come up for air for years at a time.

A huge idea requires a large commitment of time. Excuses pop into the mind like jack rabbits. For instance:

None of us know how much time we’ve got. How do I know I’ll get a chance to finish this?

There are so many other ideas vying for my attention.

Am I up to this? Do I have what it takes?

Do I want to uncover and expose what this idea will require me to?

If you are trembling on the brink of a Grand Canyon sized idea, don’t pull back.

You have been given this concept, not because you are fully ready and able to do it, but because you will grow into it, expand because of it.

You will end up offering yourself a gift, as much as you will those in the world who are able to witness it.

When An Idea Take Hold

Good ideas are common – what’s uncommon are people who’ll work hard enough to bring them about.
………..~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Often the difference between a successful person and a failure is not one has better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on one’s ideas, to take a calculated risk – and to act.
………..~ Andre Malraux

A mind that is stretched to a new idea never returns to its original dimension.
………..~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

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The Reconstituted Brain

I have often used the phrase, “That blew my mind.”

I imagine my mind exploding into a million bits, that fly in all directions, each seeking enlightenment. My brain is so shocked by this event that it is reconstituted into a new brain ~ capable of thinking in amazing ways it could not even imagine before.

Blown Apart

Poor Erma thought differently:

I have a theory about the human mind. A brain is a lot like a computer. It will only take so many facts, and then it will go on overload and blow up.
………… ~ Erma Bombeck

My favorite source for mind blowing info is Ted Talks. For example, have you seen this one?

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