Healing is a slow journey. It doesn't happen over night. There are steps forward, and slips back, the occasional bold and giant leap. Patience has never been my strongest virtue, especially with myself. I'm doing this book right now called The Artists Way by Julia Cameron.
I'm just starting week 8 of 12 ----
I've started this book many times before... and always find a way to wimp out part way through... this is by far the furthest I've got. I have days where I miss my journaling and weeks where I miss tasks... but I'm determined to do this book on loop for a while till I get it through my thick skull. I'm seeing and feeling changes, subtle and small though they are. I feel I'm healing. Maybe at a glacially slow pace, but it's there. 5 years of major trauma takes a while to recover from.
This book, is not just about art in all its various forms, so if you are reading this and think it has nothing to do with you think again. It is really about looking at what is holding you back from doing the things we enjoy in life. For most of us there is a creative element to this, be in acting, singing, writing, dancing, acting, cooking, painting, pottery, gardening what have you. ... I'm looking at all the various programming throughout my life that has told me that I can't do what I love to do... whether this programming is from external or internal voices. It's hard, and it's scary and it brings up some deep dark muck. Balanced with all of this however is the importance of self care. I'm finding it to be very good for me. I'm sure, if you are reading this, it would be good for you too.
I'm journalling every day "Morning pages" ideally 3 handwritten pages every morning. Getting up at 5:30 am (gross) to do it... some times I doddle and only get 2 pages in... sometimes I sleep like crap and sleep instead... I'm trying not to. "Artist dates" every week, consist of doing something that feeds, and nurtures the soul. by yourself. For me, since I'm currently in recovery financially from my tenure in LA this generally means cheap/free things. Going to the farmers market, going to karaoke (ok that's not by myself but I still count it), painting my nails (which I'm doing once or twice a week), having a bubble bath and doing a face mask, cooking. I splurged yesterday and got some scallops at a seafood sale... these are a favorite treat, but they have been so expensive I usually pass them by... lately I've been stressed so just doing quick stir fry's and one pan/pot meals that are done in a flash. Whatever is cheapest and easiest. Cheesy polenta with a sauté of bok choy, bacon and red onion and seared scallops take some time and care. It felt good. A little luxury.
There are tasks... little psychological assignments, some are fun, some are difficult. Sometimes I get to them all, sometimes I don't. I know I'm going to come back and try again. I'm discovering more and more that really that's one of life's big lessons. Try again.
Other little steps of progress... I have a garden. A dear friend helped me make some raised beds and now I have green and growing things. I find this is brining me so much joy. My eggplant are struggling but my herbs are thriving and squash, and peas, and beans and tomatoes and every day theres some new thing coming up. Spring has been cold and wet so things have been slow going. Much like me, but as my garden grows I heal.
Another dear friend gave me an exercise bike (a bit like a unicycle) and I'm starting to work out. I'm fitfully out of shape and with the aches and pains and everything this too is slow going. I'm down 12.4 pounds since last October... it was 15... but you know you win a little you lose a little. I'm starting an intermittent juice fast. breakfast and lunch juice, meal for dinner. Gonna do this for a bit and see how I feel. Had been trying keto... but I love fruit and veggies and was finding it hard. I have this goal in my head to be a size 12... I think the last time I was a 12 I was 12-13 years old... so who knows if thats even possible.
Part of the journalling is looking at gratitude and affirmations. So every day I write 10 of each. last night I went to my favorite local bar to see some friends, and one brought up how she missed my posting my gratitude on facebook. I had a whole flood of feelings about this as while I feel I've been healing I also have been on the flip side facing a lot of insecurities and self loathing. Having a friendly acquaintance say I'm inspiring is both heart warming and slightly overwhelming. But that all along has been one of my goal, to be inspired and be inspiring.
As for the arts... I find myself avoiding, but here I am... blogging. I colored last week. So this too.. I'm starting to tip toe back into. I'm singing more challenging songs at karaoke. I'm looking ahead to next season in the theatre here and pondering auditions. It's time to return.
I have told myself for so long now that I'm not good enough, an echo of words told to me... but perhaps... just perhaps I am worthy to have a voice after all, and maybe just maybe I'm worthy of positive attention and to have my talent noticed.
Needless to say. I highly recommend the book.
I'm going to do my best to do at least a blog a week.... here it is.. a little commitment to myself.
About the Blog
I've been blogging on and off for years. This is my area to explore healing, food, wine, travel and various thoughts on life. My goal: Be True. Be Kind. Heal. Dream. Inspire. Discover. Create.