What is your passion? Do you have one? I’m rediscovering mine. I used to love to do artwork many years ago. But somewhere along the way I started to believe I didn’t have time to be creative. I was too busy being a mom. If that thought didn’t get me, the “mommy guilt” would. If I couldn’t even manage a daily task of cleaning the house, how could I take time to do art? Do you know that feeling? Believing that you shouldn’t take time for yourself?
What I found was that by continually ignoring my passions, I lost them. What I was left with was a feeling of emptiness. I felt disconnected to myself. I used to have a pull toward something I would like to do but I continually denied myself the pleasure of doing it. So you know what happened? Finally the pull stopped happening. My creative spirit gave up trying to guide me to my passion. Suddenly I didn’t even know what I wanted. Not only were my passions lost, but I was too.
I was left not only with a feeling of emptiness but also a confusion about my identity. I considered myself an artist who used to do art. How long can you consider yourself something when you are not even doing it? Now of course I am more than just an artist. I am a mom, wife, a therapist, a friend, a sister, a neighbor etc etc. But art was a way I expressed my “self”. I love that feeling of having an idea and then bringing it to a reality. Drawing isn’t even only about expressing, it’s also about discovering. When I draw an object I discover its uniqueness. I also draw as a way to connect to and discover myself. So how could I get past the excuses and get back to creating?
First I had to realize that saying “I don’t have time” is a cop out. We make time for what we think is important. Wasn’t my happiness important? Also, what role model was I setting for my kids? Did I want my daughters to believe that to be a mother you have to be selfless and give up your passions? No, I want my daughter to be happy and feel they can take care of themselves while also caring for others.
So what am I doing now? I started doing art. To help inspire myself I joined an art motivation group. They meet once a month. The only instructions are to create and build something around a particular theme. I promised myself to forget the guilt (and any other judgments I would normally have) and just do something. I just wanted to focus on the fun of doing art. Guess what? I did it! Was it the best artwork I ever did? No, but it was a start.
Interestingly enough, I drew eggs. Eggs are a start to life. Maybe those drawings were a start to feeling more alive. Passion to me is something that makes you feel alive. It pulls you toward something you like to do or can learn from. I had felt that following my passion would be selfish. But actually following our passions isn’t selfish. When we don’t follow our passion our “aliveness” diminishes. When we do follow our passion it makes us a more “full” person. When I am more alive and “full” I am better able to help others.
What is your passion? Are you following it? Or have you forgotten it? It’s not too late. Just start small. Even 15 minutes a day, week or month do something you love in order to start the spark. This month is my birthday. I’m making a commitment to myself to do at least one piece of artwork a month for a year. Of course I’m using the term “artwork” very loosely here. I’m focusing more on allowing myself the enjoyment of the process and not as much focus on the greatness of the product. I’m focusing on the fun. Each month I’ll post my attempts. Remember: no judgments, just fun!
What is something you can do once a month? One thing you’ve been meaning to do but just haven’t gotten around to doing? Let’s start the pact together. Let’s reignite our passion and find where it leads us.