[gallery columns="1"] I just returned from a trip to Oklahoma to see my grandma. She has had a tough year, so my most recent visits have been bittersweet. Time together is so precious, but I feel that the cost of this time is becoming greater and greater for her. Seeing all that she has gone through battling cancer at the age of 85 has shifted my perspective in ways different from other close-up experiences I have had with cancer (and I've had my share.) I am back in my home in Venice and I am feeling very quiet. The birds outside are chirping and it is sunny, and what I want most to do today is to take an inventory of where I am right now and where I want to go from here. I am continuing on the journey I wrote about last week.
It is interesting - when I first started Swirly I felt ready and able to conquer the world and make my dream real. I did not let self-doubt, worry or bitterness hold me back. I had my moments but for the most part it was full steam ahead, muddling my way through a cavern with no light on my helmet and no map. Now that I have achieved success as an artist and want to shift in a new direction, I am filled with fear and doubt. What if people don't like what I do? What if I fail? What if I fail and that means I was never really an artist after all? What if I close the door on one part of my work and I miss out on something that hasn't happened yet? I laugh at myself at the irony - before success I felt totally capable of being successful. Now that I have reached that level of success doubt is clouding my brain. I guess sometimes life is just a big kick in the pants, and you have to move forward despite having the fears and keep going despite having experienced a lot of disappointments. I suppose if there were guarantees the fun would disappear. With so much unknown the exciting part is that anything is possible.
"Only when we are no longer afraid do we begin to live." -Dorothy Thompson