I cannot believe my first art show in my entire life is one week away.
I am so excited, so happy, so greatful…and at the same time, I’m a nervous wreck.
I feel like I’m going to puke!
At age 39 I decided to let go of my fear, anxiety & perfectionism and walk through the fire. I’ve always wanted to declare myself to be an artist, but I was truly afraid of criticism, failure and good old-fashioned not being liked.
17 months ago it got to the point that not living my dreams felt way worse than any fear I could ever imagine.
It was enough to get me to jump off the cliff and into the unknown. I guess you would call it a “coming out” of sorts.
My personality is not one to be subtle. I am sure I could have dabbled for a year in my basement. Locked the door and not let any one know my thoughts and feelings. But, if you are going to jump, you should JUMP BIG. right? Why not make a public decree that you are going to create a creative work every day for a year and share all of your creative angst about it at the same time? You know, share my imperfections, my mistakes, my lessons, my triumphs, my successes…
But through it all, I still kept wondering… why?
I know now. Why would I share this?
It’s because I know I’m not alone and I wanted to shed light on this.
I know there are many of us out there afraid to tell our inner most secrets. Who we are and what we truly want to be.
My husband sent me this quote:
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously
give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.
A return to love
– Marianne Williamson
Now that I’ve done it, I can give you some words of wisdom. It’s not as scary as we, ourselves, make it out to be. Admitting our dreams to ourself is way harder than declaring it to the world.
Action is tough too. It takes every morsel of your soul. Comfort & safety does feel easier, until it doesn’t…. and then you have a choice; act on it or ignore it.
Listen. Pay attention. Is something inside calling you to action? It may simply be the time to start asking yourself this question. The awareness, the very fact that you may not have even thought to ask what you really want, is big. When we make-do, we sometimes forget what are choices we really have.
So, I am facing my final fear of this entire endeavor on May 4th at 2pm.
It’s the owning of my own declaration. It is standing in front of my work, sharing it, allowing the analysis, allowing the criticism, exposing my inner self to the world and my peers.
It is in so many ways more difficult than the physical manifestation of the work itself.
But I’m ready. I feel the catharsis. When I look around the gallery, It feels really good.
Everything on the walls is already a part of my past. It is an experience that has come and it has gone. It made me richer & stronger as a person.
I am coming to understand that this is all I truly need to carry with me into the present moment. The knowledge that I am strong and I am am brave enough to follow my heart. This is the take-away.
However, I am one to face my fears. I have a fear of not being perfect. It is time to shine the light on it and in doing so hopefully shed it.
I will walk through my mental fire, embrace my journey, be thankful for such a fabulous experience and own it.
Who-wee. If I get through this exhibition part, its smooth sailing…
because then I will be freed up to embark on a new adventure. Hot diggity dog!