Catching Fireflies

finding magic along the way

Shaking Off the Dust, or Coming Home

I stopped in to my little corner of the universe today to try to stretch out some writing muscles and dip my toe back in. I have been on a sabbatical of sorts while I worked on my certification for my day job, and then life ran a little amok…

But I am here now. I wandered around a little and touched the sentimental objects I had left laying on the shelves here. I pulled the old sheets off of the comfy chairs, and pulled back the heavy drapes to let the pale winter sunshine come in. I swept the dust bunnies that had accumulated in the corners out the door and cracked a window to let in a little fresh air.

The place is ready for some visitors again, and so am I. ๐Ÿ™‚

I would have thought that when my boards were behind me, I would have run screaming for my laptop in a mad rush to let words spill all over the page again. But that didn’t happen.

I chalked it up to burn out and told myself that once I got through year-end at the office and the holidays I would be itching to grab a journal, pull out my work in progress and edit into the wee hours of the night, sign in to WordPress and post until the sun came up. But that didn’t happen either.

I expected to be in the mood to read and write as soon as my minor surgical procedure was behind me, but I didn’t. It wasn’t that there was a lot of pain, or that I had to be off my feet for weeks. I would tell myself that resting after a full day back at work was important, and that naps on the weekend were allowed. And it is and they are, but that wasn’t all of it.

Time off from creative endeavors doesn’t always breed an uncontrollable urge to write or paint or play an instrument. Actually it does, but it doesn’t always make that urge step into the light and propel you forward. I think the longer you allow yourself to be away from your creativity, even if the reasons behind your absence are good ones, the harder it is to start again.

Picking up where you left off is not always simple. The mind muscles you use to create grow rusty very quickly when not in use. Your blind faith in your creation fades and your ability to just put yourself out there becomes a faint memory.

But, the good news for all of us who have taken some time to stray from the creative path, who have let our instruments and pen and paper and paints and blow torches or whatever other tools we use lay dormant and dust-coveredย in the corner, who have let the day-to-day drudgery become the ruler of our spare time – the good news is it is never too late to pick up our tools and start again. We can add to our creative lives any time we choose to, and whatever passion or skill we have cultivated has not disappeared forever.

It is still there, sleeping and waiting for us to return.

There is a quote by Goethe that I have taped to my computer that sums it up quite nicely —

Whatever you can do,

Or dream you can do,

Begin it.

Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.

Begin it now.

What are your creative dreams that you have let fester and wilt on the vine? If you had all the time in the world, what would you pursue?

6 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    Missed you while you were gone,welcome back!

  2. Oh my goodness you’re back! ๐Ÿ˜€ Happy to see you again.

    I do the same thing. When I stop writing, my momentum and drive just shoot straight out the window. Glad you’re jumping back in. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Thanks Daphne! It is good to be back. ๐Ÿ™‚
      Momentum is a frightening thing to lose. You feel like you will never dip your toe in again. I was waiting for the universe to just give me a shove into the deep end but that wasn’t coming. So, here I am inching my way in and waiting for the water to warm up.
      I will have to hop over to your blog and see what you have been up to while I was away. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Hi Cheryl so glad you are back. I have realised lately that I need those times off the writing. It is like a rejuvenation of my creativity and I have also realised that I start again when it is time for me. Julia Cameron called it “Desert Times” when you just can not get into it at all but she says that it’s like seeds resting in the soil in winter to do a spurt of growth in spring. You will see you will have lots of ideas propelling your work in progress along. Take good care of yourself and good writing ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi Bee! Thanks for helping me put a name to these dead creative lulls. It helps to know the seeds are merely lying dormant.

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