I barely feel like an artist anymore. I've lost almost all sense of connection with my creative side since I started my business in 2006. I was avoidant enough prior to that. Once my goals changed from creating something meaningful to generating income to pay the bills – also adding in the complications that my vertigo issues have caused since 2011 – well, I've felt a whole lot more like a robot with a quota and a lot less like a human being with a dream.
I haven't stopped writing but I've certainly lost the sense of community that I had with my followers here on the blog. We were a small group of less than 100 but hey, we were great. That's still one tenth of the "1000 true fans" that everyone is after to ensure a real career! Would everyone in that group have really purchased the books and albums that I'd have released independently? I don't know. I'll never know because I didn't do it. I left the poems unpublished and the songs unfinished. I said, "Don't give up on me," but how could you not? I was paralyzed by my own self-doubt, fear of failure, and maybe even fear of success.
I can't say that I haven't had success though. My business is modest but it pays the bills and I've seen a greater profit every single year. I might not be in the art realm, but I'm using my talent and skill in both my writing and transcription businesses. I know that I'm fortunate to be able to work from home and that I've done well. I'm appreciate of my clients and I've learned so much from all of them. They're all true professionals and that's not always the case in today's world. I'm blessed with good work.
In regards to my personal life, I am blessed there too. My relationship is coming up on its 17th anniversary and we are stronger than ever in it. We're saving for our first home together and I think we're going to be able to make that happen even sooner than we thought. We've moved around so much in the past decade. We want to find a safe and happy place to settle down and start a family. Wherever we end up, that's where we'll likely stay, at least until the kids are grown. This is a beautiful time in our lives as far as planning and dreaming goes. Soon all of these things will be real and our lives will have changed so drastically from what they are right now.
Having said all that, I'm unfulfilled, and there are things that I need to make progress on now before I enter the arena of parenthood, when there will be even less time to do these things! The fact that I'm unfulfilled in the creativity area of my life is no secret and it's far from breaking news. I'm sure that those who know me personally can sense it in my eyes, in my posture, in my sighs. Those who are readers here can feel it in my blog posts and of course it's in plain view in my poetry. I'm getting older and now I've got a chronic illness to deal with on top of that. If I don't get back into artist mode now, I never will.
I think the first step in reigniting that spark is to commit to being connected right here. Regardless of how many readers I have right now, I just need to show up and write. Show up and make video blogs. Show up and share poetry. Show up and be myself. I need to announce this new site to the world and officially shut down the old one. There are so many walls that I've constructed to protect me and they've all got to come down. There won't be a fairy godmother who comes down and helps me to do this. No Oprah, no life coach, no intervention from family and friends! I'm the only one who can save me.
The only way to feel like an artist again is to act like one. To be one. To stop drowning the real me underneath everything else.