The Creative Process and How A Little Pinkbird Emerges From a Dark Cave

journal

I feel like I’ve been in a cave – a dark one with little light, and definitely no color for several years or so. Creatively speaking. But yes, at my core I’m a creative type, so I’ve been blogging fairly regularly, and I wrote a song or two at times when I didn’t have much of a choice. And journaling, that usually never stops. Because I know that without SOME sort of creative outlet, I’d turn into a nightmare (was already halfway there! ;)). But somehow my spirit had died – or so I thought – when it came to music.

And now all of a sudden, I feel like a little bluebird, emerging from that cave. (Although the color pink is more inspiring to me, so a little pinkbird I shall be!)

And how liberating it feels. And how the light feels so good, shining on my face.

And oh, how I’ve felt like a fraud. A musician who doesn’t do music? Can I even call myself one anymore?

And how relieved I’ve felt to know, this is normal, it’s just part of the process.

Much like how before writing a blog or song, sometimes I must put in my time of staring at the wall in front of me. Just staring and doing nothing, really. Which may seem like a pointless waste of time. But it is in fact very much needed. And other times, inspiration just strikes, and I must jump on it and start creating like a mad person before it leaves.

In one of the books I’m currently reading, Still Writing by Dani Shapiro (which I HIGHLY recommend, it’s fantastic), she writes of the creative writing process. The following excerpt helped me more than I could have imagined:

“When I’m between books, I feel as if I will never have another story to tell. The last book has wiped me out, has taken everything from me, everything I understand and feel and know and remember, and… that’s it. There’s nothing left. A low-level depression sets in. The world hides its gifts from me. It has taken me years to realize that this feeling, the one of the well being empty, is as it should be. It means I’ve spent everything.”

This is exactly what I needed to hear and it let me know that what I’ve been going through is “normal”. And it also made me realize a crucial point – the fact that I was so empty, wiped out clean, was BECAUSE I literally gave my whole self for my ‘Child In Me’ album.

And now I know that this is something I should be proud of – I put my everything and my best self into this creative project, so much so that I couldn’t have given any more. And for this, it is the highest, best piece of work I could have created at that point in my life. I put my work=my heart out there, even though it left me vulnerable. I offered it up even if I was terrified. And for that, I am proud.

And my creative deadness after it was a testament to this. How liberating this knowledge is, to me… and to realize, I’M NOT A LAZY FRAUD!!

I may have not known what was going on within me. But I’ve been listening closely. I always do. I didn’t try to force what wasn’t there. If I had, everything I created would have been blah. And I’m not cool with blah. What I’ve been doing, is dancing to the beat of my own heart, not to anyone else’s or especially my own expectations.

And I’ve been waiting for my well to fill up again. With creative juices, and sparkly new stories. With life lessons and glittering dreams. With Magic.

And it slowly has.

And to know that I’ve never stopped being a musician. I’ve just been recuperating. This is gold. No, this is ROSE GOLD. For I Am A Musician. And the music has always been in me. It always IS in me. And it has never left me, though I thought it had.

The pinkbird has emerged.

“Inside you there’s an artist you don’t know about… Say yes quickly, if you know, if you’ve known it from before the beginning of the universe.” – Rumi

YES.

giving-tree-wave

Little Everyday Miracles that Lead to a Life Magical <3

TheStar

“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will NEVER find it.” – Roald Dahl

So I can say that I’m a believer of magic. Have always been, at least from what I can remember. I seem to most of the time be in a subconscious state of searching for it, and I kind of knowingly expect it. Although I’ve lost my way before, more than a lot of times and at times for long, dark, solid stretches. But usually I’m aware of the quietly sparkly, heart-tugging trails it leaves. And why wouldn’t I follow these trails that make life so much more colorfully fulfilling?

The secret is, it’s in the everyday choices, and cultivating an awareness. Whether to follow that heart-tug or not. And most of the time, you don’t really know where it’s ultimately leading. And the big moments in life, the ones that are obviously INFUSED with magic, they may have been made up of all those “smaller” times you decided to follow the trails :)

The other day I pulled The Star Tarot card for the day. Oh how I love this card! The card for wish fulfillment! The card for shining your best self out to the world! I know that when I pull it I should seek carefully the magic, because it’s surely to be there. And if it’s not one of those BIG, splashy moments now, then it will surely reveal to me the trail that will lead me there, should I want that. To that place where I can feel beautifully passionate, inspired, fulfilled, and free.

So with this Star card energy, I sat at my desk doing my morning routine. While sipping my tea & honey and green smoothie, I heard a ding from my phone. It was Twitter notifying me that a couple of my tweets to one of my favorite authors Francesca Lia Block, had been favorited by her! And one of them was regarding an event she’s running – I will be seeing her at this event in March now! (And I am beyond excited, and how I’ve missed you, California!!)

A little while later I got a pop up on my computer about an email that had just come in. My senses perked when I saw who it was from – someone from my childhood who’d written a beautiful song that I used to love so very much. I’d written him and had been waiting for a response – I’d proposed to him that I’d record his song because I have been feeling a VERY strong urge to do so – and I wanted his permission. The email gave me the permission I was seeking (and he was also very excited!) and when I looked closely, it had been sent at 11:11am exactly! A magical number to me, so therefore another sign! So currently I’m trying to arrange it in my head, and have plans to record it from home as soon as my voice gets better. (I think I already have the piano intro down!) And who knows? It may even end up on my next album! :)

As if the day hadn’t given me butterflies enough already, I got the most beautiful sign later on in the day. I’d gotten up from my desk to stretch a bit, and walked into my living room where we have a mantle set up with candles, incense, crystals, a Buddha statue, and other gems. Above it is a big window. I looked out the window and it was gray and barren with no greenery of course, it’s the dead of winter. But I looked through the tangle of branches and there, sitting on one of them was the brightest, bluest, prettiest little bluebird I’ve ever seen! In the middle of all the snow! It was just sitting there in the center of my window, and shone like a sparkling sapphire among all that gray. It took my breath away. I was too in the moment to snap a picture in time, but hey, I got to really be present in this magical moment for a little longer than I would have, had I gotten that picture. And for that, I’m satisfied!

I felt like this was a sign that I’m indeed on the right path in the endeavors that I’m currently pursuing. The ultimate reasons or outcomes for all this may not be clear yet, but I just may be onto something. And to think, all of these moments just started out by me following those little tugs in my heart, from time to often time. “And above all, watch with glittering eyes the world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will NEVER find it.”

WInterMantle