As you may know, I’ve been fully immersed in process in the last month or so- working on my book presentation for my agent to shop around, and I have LOVED the process, trying to cross all the t’s and dot all the i’s. Exciting to be at the next stage. Ready to share. So ready. But let’s be honest- there is still a safety in the preparation. The not quite ready for prime time mode. The holding back to get it right.
Safety because it is still just mine.
And I’ve been enjoying working full days in my PJ’s and torn cardigan and worn out socks, wearing a scarf made by a dear friend, counting “pennies” (nickels now I guess), eating “poverty sandwiches” (which are very tasty, by the way- rye bread from No Frills, toasted, with No Name mayo, Spike spice and a generous topping of spinach leaves).
But the time had to come.
Shit or get off the pot. So finally releasing the private presentation, sharing with a particular list of people for feedback, has been liberating and exhilarating. But there it is… UGH… the old vulnerability hangover, as Brené Brown calls it.
What does it look like from in here?
Do this for me- wrap yourself completely in a blanket, preferably in a room with a window, preferably daytime, so it’s bright out. Huddle in a sitting position or lie down- now just expose one eye. Look to the light.
Look out at the world from this place. Listen to the loud beating of your heart and feel the acidic pit in your lower abdomen. The endless self-attacks and doubt. That’s pretty much me right now- or my frame of mind at least. Oh yes, I know, I know, I KNOW that
The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt. – Sylvia Plath
I have done so much self-work, and gathered so much support around me, yet the racing mind is back. Oh my God, what have I done? The what-if questions. The fear of failure.
Writing is finally about one thing: going into a room alone and doing it. Putting words on paper that have never been there in quite that way before. And although you are physically by yourself, the haunting Demon never leaves you, that Demon being the knowledge of your own terrible limitations, your hopeless inadequacy, the impossibility of ever getting it right. No matter how diamond-bright your ideas are dancing in your brain, on paper they are earthbound. – William Goldman
So what has happened since I started sharing the presentation?
The feedback has been incredibly positive. Wow.
And I’ve tried to share with a wide variety of reader types. And I’ve received some great and valuable suggestions, which I am working on today. And I have the greatest support from my agent.
But I want to be real about this feeling. It is SCARY.
It’s the life of the artist. Or just simply the human condition, I suppose.
I’ve got to take my own hand and pull myself out of this, if I truly want it.
Do I want this? All that lies ahead- even if what lies ahead is HUGE AND GREAT?!
I look to my guides. What are they saying, experiencing?
Aligning with this cosmic energy and really feeling my vulnerability and frailty. Embracing it and being clear for it so I can properly navigate it and not cause any added self suffering is challenging but I’m determined to ride this spiral wave into the depths of my own insecurities and come out with a renewed perspective centered on gratitude and a deeper sense of self love. I know there is a divine reason for being this empathically sensitive to everything around me. Sending love out to anyone being challenged right now with loneliness or feelings of unworthiness and to anyone being tempted by old cycles that don’t serve their highest selves. We really are in this together, all connected, all one, so I know I’m not alone when I feel this way. Blessings to us all. Faith, love, community, and courage will get us through this! Through anything! One love! – Terry Tsipouras, November 29, 2015
Ah, Terry. Ok- that makes me feel understood! Terry Tsipouras always posts the most soul-touching wisdom just when I need it the most. Deep gratitude for this magical human being!
So I take off the blanket:
Gather the affirmations!
If you hear a voice within you say you cannot paint, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.” – Vincent van Gogh
I look to the birds! The herons are back on the roofs on neighboring buildings.
Head high! Invite it in! Be ready! Enjoy!