The next number of posts, all titled Conversations on… come from email communications between a dear friend and me. With her permission, I am publishing excerpts from them because I feel they pertain to everything we’ve been discussing on the blog. Kate has been in the process of trying to figure out how to be a writer and still maintain her teaching job. She has very recently decided she must leave her job and fully embrace a “writing life.” At her request I’ve changed her name and am using initials for people she brings up. Those of you who have not read any of the earlier Conversation pieces, may want to go back to have a better understanding of Kate’s progress. You’ll find her story under the topic category, “Kate’s Story.” It’d be great if you all would join our conversation…
All photos in today’s post were shot by Kate on visits to New Mexico.
I have poured myself a glass of wine to enjoy as I write to you. I wish you were here to share one with me. I can FEEL your inspiration all the way over here and it is inspiring me! You are experiencing The Artist’s Way exactly as I did. It’s why I say that book has magic in it. I am thrilled by your epiphanies. You are on your right path and the book that is offering itself to you is already beautiful! You are a writer! Now you get to write. Everything you list, the imagining the story and its characters, the research, the reading of others, is what you were born to do. I feel it in my bones, more than I was born to paint.
I am curious to know why you feel being wide open to good creative energy also brings a danger of being open to destructive energy? I found the opposite to be true: the truer to my soul I became, the more centered in true self I became, the more the outside influences, while still challenging, didn’t hold as much sway. When I would get sucked into something—I remember this clearly when I first found out about BW–I would get quiet and say to myself, “Remember who I am. Remember who I am.” That always brought ME back. And, trust me, the authentic you is powerful beyond measure. She is capable of doing this last required thing for the job that was stealing her voice. Weak as you still are, you are ready to complete this. The universe is throwing its full weight behind you. Since you must face these voicemails and emails, protect yourself with a solid consciousness of who you are before you begin. Deal with them from “head” as much as you can. Take as many breaks as you need. These are messages from your old life. They really have nothing to do with you anymore. They are the last gasps of that old life dying. Take whatever time you need to grieve this as well.
You went out tracking! Could the universe possibly send you more confirmation of your right path than you’ve had this week? I am SO HAPPY for you! I think I saw cougar tracks in the mud (we had RAIN!) the other day and so wished you were here.
I remember being at the cabin on Vashon many, many months after hemorrhaging, spending a quiet day on the beach with mom and dad, helping mom make dinner, and then my complete collapse after that. I couldn’t even do the dishes and I thought, “What’s WRONG with me?” At least you get it. You need TIME to heal the deep things that need healing and you are giving it to yourself. Keep doing that. It’s going to take much longer than you think it will. Be kinder to yourself than I was to me, please.
Yes, all the big things this week are a result of your Artist’s Way work, I am certain. The morning pages are integral. When you feel fearful about the overall, bring it back to the moment. That’s all you need to handle. That’s all you CAN handle.
So here I am, trying to regroup a little and get back on track. It’s funny how the fear factor can slip in and suck the inspiration out. It’s important to remember that, as you noted, I am still healing and still vulnerable. And for me, being open to all channels means that the ties that aren’t fully broken, the parts of the old life that I am still letting go of, are still eating at my insides. In order to look ahead, I need to completely let go, and having these last strings and loose ends to tie up means I can’t do that. So I’m feeling like doing that will be potentially destructive to me, though I know I can prepare for it by keeping my heart out of it as much as possible, and telling myself that is not me. But who I am is still forming, becoming clear. Though you see all the progress, my identity is still somewhat amorphous, not firmly established yet, and so it’s difficult to say THIS is who I am rather than that, when the THIS is still taking shape, when my fears about how all this will unfold, whether I am “good enough” and strong enough are still tugging at me and undermining my process at times.
I understand and have compassion for the transitional place you’re in. Fear makes everything a challenge. I’ve been pretty deep in fear lately too. I also understand your need to let everything go before you can feel some certainty in who you are becoming.
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Love to you all,