2013 has been sounding ominous to me since I got wind of it sometime during 2012.
13, really? Are we suddenly all ok with this number? I haven’t heard a single joke about it. Maybe we are all too scared to admit how terrible an entire year of bad luck could be, even in jest.
My 2012, The Year Without Fear, was a smashing success, as you, my faithful readers have seen. (Today is the anniversary of my flight to Italy!) I was able to uproot my life, as well as my heart, and mind, explore uncharted territory, and land on my feet here in Az. It was a year of letting go of fears that had been dragging me down, sneakily disguised in other, more noble concerns, for too long. I can’t say that I have 100% overcome of all my fears, but I know I can. I’ve made huge progress.
I mean, I ate olives, several times. On purpose.
Around my birthday I began contemplating a theme for this year. At the recommendation of my junior high English teacher (Thank you, Facebook) I quickly settled on creation.
Creativity. Created. Creatively be creative.
I’ve been studying the scriptures, spiritual guides, and my heart about this topic and I have learned a lot about creativity. What I have learned has taught me that this will be more focused, much more structured, and therefore much more challenging year. Strange right? Those are not words I normally associate with creation, but they are very true.
Here’s is what I’ve learned about Creation. It requires action. It is not spontaneous. While it can be inspired and surprising, and lead to all kinds of things that weren’t anticipated, it doesn’t come from nothing. It is a messy business requiring concerted and continual effort. Planning, preparing, organizing, and forming are all forms of creation.
Not all creations are perfect. Some will get partially formed and be put on a shelf or crumpled and tossed in the waste bin. Some will reach their final stage be unrecognizable from their first draft. Some will spring into a hydra’s head of iterations, all from one idea. Some creations you might not even like when they are finished. Some will be tinkered and tinkered and tinkered with and never actually be “finished.” The goal is to create, not to create a masterpiece. Stay focused on the process, not the end goal.
Michaelangelo never finished his ‘Prisoners’ statues, but they are as finished as they needed to be to express powerful emotion
There are many accounts of the creation of the world. I don’t think any of them tell the whole story. (No good story tells the whole story. The whole story is on my depressing bank statement.) Is any one of them wrong? Is any one of them untrue? Some start earlier, some end later. Some are contradictory. I don’t care! They are all wondrous. I love all of them and learn different lessons from each one. I can pick and choose from them what I want, when I want it. They are creations unto themselves. There is no one way to create a thing, and no such thing as a perfect creation, unless your are God. (I’m not.)
I did a lot of snuggling newborns and talking about labor stories over Christmas.
Here is part of what it made me think about. Women are born to create. We are internally structured for it. We have a place in our body devoted to building new life. Something new is created by mixing parts of who we are with the parts of something (someone) we are passionate about. After many months of hope, and worry, and discomfort, and in a final burst of extreme anguish, the new life is released to the world. It will grow independently, under our watchful care. And become something greater than we ever imagined. We will weep, feeling unworthy of it. We are not capable of understanding what it will mean to others beyond ourselves. Even though, it is our creation, sprung from deep inside ourselves.
When we are not in the process of creation we literally bleed for want of it every month. Part of me feels that painfully emptiness of what I am not doing, every time.
These are not just physical meanings. These are spiritual metaphors of all our creations.
One of the grandest uses of this metaphor is in the New Testament in Rev 12. Read it. It’s amazing.
I’ve always been captivated by this image–not that image, the image from the scripture. That is just a representation of what I see in my mind. In my mind it’s a beautiful illustrated film. She is a wonder. She is powerful. She is royal. She is humble. She is creating. She is protecting. She is protected. She is attacked. She is strengthened. She giving everything she can to God. He is giving her everything back. Heaven is on her side. The earth helps her. She connects them. The devil fights against her. She is fighting back, still.
Then there is the Mother of the Men, the earth herself, who Enoch overhears crying during his terrible vision in Moses 7. Like every overworked and exhausted mother she weeps for her children, for herself. She needs a break. Enoch, like any good man, is concerned when he sees this, and takes up her case too. “When shall she rest?” he asks the Lord about 5 times until he knows that this poor lady will eventually get her much deserved spa session.
This woman, (not that woman, that pic is almost totally unrelated. I just liked it.) the earth, is weeping, just like the Lord, because her children have chosen hatred and violence. They have polluted her with filth and she longs to be clean and pure, like she was when God made her. This is what can happen when creation goes wrong, or stops.
I relate to both of these women. Creation is about longing and fighting, growing and returning.
This talk: Happiness, Your Heritage also delves into how to create beauty around you. How to develop yourself into who the Lord wants you to be, and how that works hand in hand with charity and kindness. I could say more about all of this, but it’s time for dinner.
For 2013 Here are things I want to create in some kind of order:
- Babies. Just one would do. But this is a two-to-tango affair, so I can’t really make any promises. Specially since he has to marry me first.
- Beauty. I will spread beauty wherever I go. This has begun through a increased use of makeup, particularly red lipstick.
- Art. Once upon a time on this blog I started sharing chapters from a novel I was writing. This novel has since morphed into a play that I am committed to finishing and trying to have produced. The production may not happen til 2014, but the writing will happen this year. If. It. Kills. Me. The Princes of Serendip will Sail again!
- Charity/Kindness/Compassion. I want to be a nicer person. A less sarcastic, ironic, absorbed in my own wild cleverness person. I want to be sweet and loving, and kind. These are the things that God sees in me. It’s my job to live up to them.
- Connection between mind and body. I am learning things about myself. I have learned that my physical health is exactingly tied up in my mental health. These two parts of me influence one another in a never ending cycle. I want better control of this swinging pendulum, and to bring it into a nice steady rhythm.
- Opportunity for professional growth.
- Meaningful relationships.
Isn’t this a great list? I mean, I can create whatever I want because as long as I do SOMETHING I am creating, even if it sucks! There is no wrong way to create, so let’s do it!