I want to tell you a story ….
During one of the most challenging, tiring, saddening (maddening?) months of my life, I found myself looking everywhere for something, anything to help me feel temporarily better. My kids and I were away from home for almost five weeks, without our anchor. My husband keeps us all balanced, centered and calm. Even though we were with family, we were really off without him. We had traveled to attend my grandmother’s funeral and were staying until he joined us at Christmas. The kids were acting out; they were confused, angry, sad and had no idea how to show me any of those things. I was sad, lonely, angry, frustrated and felt I couldn’t show them those things.
I wasn’t at my best, not even close. While I was shopping, I saw this:
I had to have it. I hung it in my spare room/scrapbook room/in front of my treadmill and tried to take it in. Consider this the beginning of the circle …
The next section starts at Chapters (I could browse there for hours). This particular trip led me to the self help section and a book called The Gifts of Imperfection. The tile alone was meant for me, but what sold me was a review from memory keeper extraordinaire Ali Edwards. I left the book sitting on my nightstand for months but started following Brené Brown on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. (I told you I was looking.) At some point, I watched and re-watched her TED talks. Section two of the circle.
wasting time checking Facebook one afternoon, I saw a video promoting Dr. Brown’s art journaling e-course. I couldn’t do anything except watch, cry and repeat over and over to myself, “I have to take this course. I have to take this course.” So I did what any good listener would do, I listened to my gut and took the course. I have since decided that meeting Dr. Brown (It feels weird to type that, I tend to only say Brené in real life and anyone who knows me well knows who I mean. 😉 ) must be on my bucket list. Her work is incredible and I admire it more than I can explain. Section three.
So what happened during the course? Friends of Dr. Brown’s appeared in videos and I started to realize what a circle of amazing whole-hearted women were out there. First to appear in a video and talk about how art changed her life was Kelly Rae Roberts. I loved her attitude, her work, her spirit. I went back to that print I had purchased almost two years before and, imagine that, there was her name. I had a piece of her work in my studio all along and had never realized it. Next to come in a video was Ali Edwards, the scrapbooker whose review led me to buy The Gifts in the first place. It was all some sort of crazy cosmic confirmation that I needed this course, these lessons and these people.
At the end of last year, I decided to sign up for One Little Word®. I took a week or so to think about words, and consider what word I might need. I saw an Instagram photo that referenced “shine” and it made me pause. It found me later that week while shopping. Every piece of art that spoke to me that day had shine on it, somewhere, somehow.
And who was the artist of the piece I just had to have? Yep. Kelly Rae Roberts.
I feel like these artists have all been part of a journey for me – a journey to find my inner artist, my inner story teller, my inner brave one and I could not possibly be more grateful for it.