Discarded Treasure

 
...Her world is full of magic. Her world is both more beautiful and less than mine but for a trade off of reasons. I am her dream and she is mine. An intense sadness rushes over me as I feel that I have failed her...
— Sue Sonnenberg ~"Discarded"
 

     Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the little girl I used to be.  Working my way through Sue Sonnenberg’s book, Discarded: A Journal For The Creative Soul, I was stopped and stirred at the same time deep in my spirit.  Sue writes about “the little girl” in her…in all of us really, and wonders what that little girl thinks has become of her in her adult years…has the adult me let her down?  Instantly I wondered if she would be proud of me…

     Honestly, the thought brought me to my knees. A flood of memories. When I was little I was so imaginative. I could entertain myself for hours with the most creative plots and storylines in my mind. I didn’t need much to find joy. Give me a mirror or a broom and I was set for the day!  Judgement, social expectations, social acceptance, these were completely unknown to me.  Freedom and my imagination were all I had and all I needed.  Even the introduction of other children into the moment didn’t squash my free-spirited self! 

At that time in my life, I knew no stranger and I had no enemy.  I loved everything and everyone, and as far as I was concerned all loved me back just the same.  There was nothing I could not do or try or be.  I had the utmost faith in everything within me and everything around me.  Disappointment, fear, doubt, pride, envy, jealousy…non-existent in my world.  I’m pretty sure this is the definition of “child-like faith”.  We are all born with it…

The childlike faith that asks not sight, waits not for wonder or for sign, believes, because it loves, aright, shall see things greater, things divine.
— John Keble

All these emotions and memories sparked some deep thinking.  When is it that the veil of “child like faith” gets torn off?  And why?  Why is it that kids with free spirits, deep thoughts and wild imaginations, are generally discouraged?  We are the ones usually bullied.  Many times by those who love us the most.  Family and friends trying to save us from probable humiliation tell us the factual statistics of our likeliness to fail.  They chronologically list all the problems with our dream and all the harsh realities of life.  How logistically impossible our plan is and any move toward execution of it is ultimately committing social suicide!  Our reputation will never recover!  And we're only 7!  Ok, maybe a slight dramatization, but you get the point.  Moral of the story is that too many of us encounter this repetitive discouragement.  It stops us dead in our free-bird tracks.  Our creative spirit is paralyzed and begins playing it safe.  Too afraid or too exhausted to create from inner passions and ideas anymore, now we cower to fears and doubts.  It becomes more and more work to create freely from within.  Harder and harder to hear our own voice from all of society screaming louder than little, young, wild and free we..me..you..us.  Instead, we become passionate about outward people pleasing.  It has become easier and less strenuous than straining to hear our own inner voice.  We spend our lives treading safely around what makes the world comfy and cozy in our presence, all the while feeling totally out of place and lost in our own skin. 

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"It is that simple...

...and yet it is all that much more complicated."

But then one day, after prayers and tears and freak-outs in plenty, screaming at God for a sign of purpose.  Begging for a roadmap to keep my creative self moving forward.  Any morsel of reason why I shouldn’t JUST QUIT!  He gave me….me.  You, me, our self.  Whatever your faith may be, the truth is, everything we need to navigate this life, to be happy in this life, to be whole in this life is already right there inside.  It’s that simple…and yet it is all that much more complicated.

Life has been so kind as to bruise, batter, scar and bloody every inch of our childlike spirits.  It is now up to us.  You, me.  It's time to do the “Hard Stuff”, as Sue Sonnenberg taught me, and free our spirits again!  We all feel “Discarded” from time to time, some of us have felt that way for a very long time.  What I’m learning is that we are not REQUIRED to stay there.  It’s not our calling!  It is simply part of our story.  I don’t want my creative story to be suffocated any more.  Instead, I am working through some “hard stuff” and using it to fuel my creative story. 

What do I know for sure?  Well, I know that these two images above need A LOT of work.  They were my first attempt at something new.  I know that I am in absolute love with them.  I know that they say more about me than all my words could in a lifetime and if creativity left me tomorrow, I would have no regrets.  For the first time in a long time, I am inspired.  Not only creatively, but personally.  I am excited each day to see what new challenges will arise.  Challenges testing my fears, my faith, my gifts and most of all my “give a damn”!  I pray it stays busted. 

I leave you with this little prayer...

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I pray you walk fearlessly into each new day...
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...dance in the presence of challenge and self-doubt...
…...above all, giving thanks and gratitude to the One who opens our eyes daily and loves us more, even in spite of ourselves.
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Thank you for stopping by my little blog.  Telling the story of my musings through photos is something I’ve set out to be more consistent with.  With the help of a kick-ass group of ladies and a project we are doing called “Share the Light-10 on 10”, I will be blogging monthly at the very least.  Expect something new on the 10th of each month from each of these encouraging and talented lovlies!  Want to see what talent this group has to offer?  I encourage you to hop on over and check out the latest blog post from my friend Tanya Moon!  Happy February y'all!