The more you cultivate creative growth in your life, the more surprises come to you. They open doorways you might not have even noticed or considered. While sometimes disruptive, this is actually a lot of fun most of the time.
Looking back at my own life it could largely be dramatized as a series of tragedies if one were so inclined. Personally, I prefer to look at the thread of creative expansion that runs so consistently through it all.
In the late eighties I made a major move from my beloved Arizona desert to Whidbey Island in Washington. I had been missing green trees too much to remain in the increasing smog of the Valley of the Sun.
I considered waiting until my daughter graduated from high school but I decided it was my last chance to give her the experience of living in a small settled community. She had only known the highly transient sunbelt where we hardly knew our neighbors because they came and went so rapidly.
She did not welcome this decision. We had something like world war three her entire junior year in high school! She is now raising her own children on Whidbey so I am happy to say that light dawned at last.
In the midst of that turmoil I also nearly lost my jewelry business. Without my knowledge my business partner took out a loan on all the equipment, including mine and then defaulted on the payments.
When the bank wanted to take the equipment and discovered they had no right to mine, a huge mess resulted. Eventually I took over the bank note and all the equipment, with my business partner bowing out of the situation.
No matter how much creative drive you possess, sometimes you just have to give it a rest. I took a year off jewelry design to recover from the massive stress.
When I resumed, I was newly invigorated and began some more major changes in my life. My daughter was out of high school and I headed off to Colorado to design for one of my longtime wholesale clients.
Hiking in Rocky Mountain National Park occupied most of the time I was not at the jewelry bench. It was a glorious time in my life.
When I returned to Whidbey I almost immediately moved to Lopez Island to marry Bern, a wonderful artist who has brought incredible joy to my life for 18 years now.
He got excited about designing jewelry and we spent several years doing high end juried art and craft shows all over the United States, sometimes as many as 22 shows a year. We created some really unusual jewelry and met some wonderful people who became our clients.
Driving around 33,000 miles a year does create a lot of wear and tear though. We eventually opened an art gallery here in Ennis, Montana and quit running all over the country.
The gallery opened more doors since we no longer were restricted to the specific look of the jewelry line that had been juried into a show. In fact, we were not even limited to jewelry.
While it seems perfectly natural now to be painting flowers in great explosions of paint, another surprise greeted me when I found a missing folder of my poetry this week. It had been misfiled some years ago, so I had not seen the work in a long time.
I was astonished to see how flowers and their imagery had woven through my poetry for many years before I ever picked up a brush to paint them. That creative theme had been present all along without my noticing.
I don’t know what changes are coming next, but I feel them strongly even if I cannot yet define their physical forms. I do see myself leaving jewelry behind sometime soon.
Publishing is a new challenge I have been enjoying and I see that growing. I have resumed sculpture in a small way recently but that may remain a minor note.
So it is time to be quiet and let the creative muse offer her gifts and open new doors. It is much like driving a winding mountain road wondering what splendid vistas the next curve will reveal.
This post appears in Carnival of Healing #124 where you can find a fine assortment of healing articles.
Copyright © Lexi Sundell 2008. All Rights Reserved.