Over the past couple days, the state of Tennessee has been declared a State of Emergency. We have ice everywhere, and while it makes moving around difficult, it is gorgeous. Achingly so, at times. My husband convinced me to go with him on a photo expedition of sorts yesterday (we are photographers, yes), and the photos you see here are some I took in my moments of bravery - though, the bluebird was photographed by my husband. Having grown up in the North, one might think - and, rightfully so - that I would find the wintertime here very mild; but, I don't. I acclimated to the area very quickly, and can be seen wearing jackets in the 50's. Yes, I have come to accept that I am "that" woman...
Throughout these past days of hibernation, I've also had a chance to think deeply about feedback I was given recently by Kristin Sweeting Morelli, a coach I respect. Since giving birth to my first son over 18 years ago (hard to believe sometimes), there have been many points where I've struggled with the idea that I needed to make significant money. I saw every idea as a way to make money, and found it odd that I could so easily research my way right out of ideas. I believed that if I wasn't making money, I wasn't pulling my weight in our home. This idea was never encouraged by my husband or friends; in fact, they would challenge it in supportive ways. Regardless, I haven't always known my "place," and because of that, there has been a good amount of internal struggle. Kristin asked me to consider and name some of the ways I have contributed to our home in the past, and in the moments I thought, I realized I have contributed hugely. She suggested that I may be most effective in a support role - like working alongside my husband in our business, being the support that I have been in our home, and guiding creatives in figuring out their businesses and lives (honour my strengths) - and that I might stop focusing on making money with every idea. And, my struggle ended just that quickly. As I've opened even more to her words in the past week, I've found my body relaxing into them, and the suggestions she gave. And, I am living my questions.
Kristin's advice is helping to shape my days. So is the quote I started this piece with - it was part of Hannah Marcotti's recent newsletter, and fully resonated with me. I am relishing my time at home - no guilt whatsoever - and I am appreciating my mother's supportive role through my childhood years more. I am enjoying the time I have to put into making menus with my guys and focusing on nourishment. I am motivated to declutter and organize our home. I am more grateful than ever for the way I am naturally able to support creatives, and I am looking forward to creating even more ways to help. And, I have more passion and desire for experimentation and projects around photography.
Interestingly, as I'm opening to my natural role in life, I have flowing ideas around Embody Your Muse workshops I've had a longing to bring to creative women for some time now. I was part of two workshops over the weekend which helped greatly - "Pairing Chocolate with Wine" with Tony Johnston of MTSU at a local space called Cultivate Coworking, and "Tea and Chocolate Hour: Food for the Soul Collage" over the phone and Facebook with Sue Ann Gleason - and both included chocolate. It was interesting what sort of effect the flavours had on the colours and imagery I was drawn to with collage (and even just in my mind), and I'm excited to explore this even more. I had an amazing time, and it struck me how effortlessly I could make something even more in depth available to local creatives. The collage I made connected to Sue Ann's workshop was much like others I've done recently, involving food, adventure, community, and women...pleasure. My collages have made it very clear what I really want to do workshop-wise, and I'm finally opening to them. If my recent piece appeals to you, please let me know...you may be inspired by a workshop to come!
Ease and Curiosity are becoming more and more important of late. So important, that I've written "I wonder what the path of least resistance is?" as a reminder. I also saved this suggestion by Mara Glatzel: "Pause for a moment, before you rush into the light of the day or begin chugging coffee as if your life depended on it. Put your hand on your heart and ask yourself... What do I need today?
Do that one thing. Fulfill your promises to yourself. That is how you walk the path home to yourself."
It's such an exciting time, and one that is so full of ease. Ease, because I am living my natural abilities in every area of life. I'd love to know how you celebrate ease in your life...