Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Finding the spaciousness in life

A room of one's own ...

• Drop off, then pick up cat from two overnights at the clinic – CHECK
• Start new, part-time position – CHECK
• Get first colonoscopy – CHECK

I've had a full plate the past few days and am begrudgingly into the cultural current again. A flow I desperately wish to slow. That's the one really big lesson from my week alone: I need the space and time for myself in order to create, be fed and feel whole.

That spaciousness of life that I require to be fully alive is so hard to attain amid family, work and obligation. I recently had a conversation about incorporating the writing life into raising children and a friend, also a writer, said some women never get to write and others, only after the kids are gone. The creative fire burns so greatly in me that I can not wait. It is my calling.

I think I have to move the idea of a room of one's own [Virginia Woolf] from the literal (I do have a studio) to one I can mentally create when and where I need. Perhaps that will be my new spiritual, creative practice. I so loved the luxury of living that life alone 24/7, answering to no one, rolling out of bed and doing nothing, but making a pot of coffee until I needed a break from the computer five and six hours later. It was pure joy, Certainly, it was work. But it wasn't busy work.

I was graciously offered a very part-time job at our Quaker meeting house in the office and with some more creative endeavors. It sounds like such a small slice of time, but I have to be certain I'm not trading writing time for what may be work that merely occupies me. I understand the intent of those offering was to also encourage my other writing.

I am reinterpreting my role as a journalist. For so many years, I carefully collected the stories of others and tenderly strung them into narrative to share more widely. I loved that role. Now I discover I am a journalist of a very different sort: one who uses a traditional and online journal to explore myself and, in doing so, encourages others to do similarly ... or at least consider it.

But I am also an artist, who barely finds time to pick up a chalk. Somehow, it seems ok for now as I move toward finishing my collection of writing and paintings. That has been an amazing journey that continues to unfold and has continued far longer than I ever expected. However, what I am creating is far better than I ever imagined and I am evolving right along with the process.

But that process requires time and space.

• How do I find time for creative expression?
• What happens when I don't?
• What happens when I manage to step out of the cultural flow?
• How can I build some accountability into finding that creative time?
• How can I share my progress and stumblings with another?

lingering fires
loads of time to find the right words
no rush
no schedule to hem me in

and then back to reality

and I find I can't stand saying yes before I have my time

I don't think I am supposed to


  1. Ah, Cathy, the uncertainty of the final line. That is the unanswered question that bubbles in my head.

  2. it's good to say it OUT LOUD ... thanks for the affirmation and for paying attention!