Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Stuffing It

1 Year Old Me
Growing up I was always on the shy side and never thought of myself as overly expressive but yet I found myself to be very emotional. My mother would refer to me as sensitive. At some point growing up all that changed. I stopped crying. I stopped laughing so hard. I stopped sharing. Looking back I don't think any one particular moment caused me to be so closed off instead it was a long chain of events. I'm guessing it peaked around the time of a very emotional breakup in high school. Which was immediately followed by a rotten situation with a much older married man. Everything spiraled after that into one giant mixing bowl of emotional chaos.

Then at some point the tears just stopped. Not because I was healed but because I figured out how to stuff those things deep inside of me. The stuffing has continued for I don't know how long but in the past year and through a whole lot of deep soul searching I have started to find that I am an incredibly gifted stuffer.

If you really knew me you would know that at first I appear closed off and stoic. It takes time for me to open up to new people and even more time to show emotion around them. This is something I dislike about myself immensely. I am not saying I want big changes to happen. I just wholeheartedly wish to crack wide open. I need to burst out of my shell because at this moment it is all too painful to keep stuffing. There is no room left. I'm tired of not being able to laugh so hard I lose my breath. I'm weary of holding back the tears. My body is giving me all the signs. The stomach troubles, the painful lumps in my neck. It is all pointing to the fact that I don't really let myself be heard. Staying in the shadows has become too much but I no longer know how to be in the light anymore. I am finding myself in the midst of an immense transition right now. Like the butterfly waiting to emerge. Only I don't know when the time will come. I'm counting on soon-ish.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Reliving Manzanita

The Tribe 2011 from The Long Haul Project on Vimeo

Melissa, fellow Tribe member and 1/2 of Long Haul Films, created a gorgeous video from our time in Manzanita. My only regret was that her beautiful face was missing from the footage. Next time I will remedy that. I got so much joy from seeing this and hope you do too!

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Love

Pacific Grove
Pacific Grove, California
This year a new love blossomed in my soul. Its been there always, this part of me. But it grew fiercely stronger in the past few weeks with my travels to the Oregon Coast and to California. I don't need to touch it, just to know that it is there is enough. The ocean is my haven of peace, security and calm. It heals me. I could sit for hours by the water with not a thing to do and never feel a hint of boredom. Even with the cool June gloom of the California coast I was at ease. But bring that same weather back to Idaho and I feel miserable and lock myself away inside.

Zen Beach
Beach totems
I find it therapeutic and almost meditative to walk along the beach. Searching. Listening. Feeling. Smelling. In Oregon I declared a mission to find sea glass to start a collection, but found sand dollars instead. In California I trudged along the coast searching for pretty shells and found sea glass as well. The ocean offers up her gifts to those who are willing to search, who have patience to watch and who have the eyes to truly see her beauty. Every grain of sand is a treasure, every rock a monument and every broken shell a story of beauty. I honor it all.

The start of a collection
The start of a collection
For now we call Boise, Idaho home, far away from the roar of the waves. I can only hope that some day, in this lifetime my home will be a cozy beach cottage along the shores of the sea. Until then I will visit when I can, dream when at all possible and remember the sights, sounds and smells of what is left behind.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Coastal Reflections

I'm still trying to process all the beauty that surrounded me in Manzanita. Grasping at the special moments that made it all so surreal. Our Tribe was born from the primal need we all had for connection and creativity. It was made possible by the dream of one woman with a concept sprouted from another group of inspirational souls.

I'm relishing the photos and the words shared on blogs. I'm reliving it all day by day and trying to hold onto that sense of peace that I felt along the coast. I'm watching new friendships blossom and connections take a deeper hold. I'm cherishing it all.

If ever there was a need for more of these type of connections I would say that time is now.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Tribe

Photo by Rebecca Murphy
Sunday night I returned home feeling more peaceful than I had been in months. My aching heart was warmed by the sounds of laughter, cheerful banter and the roar of the sea. I found my tribe. I found a group of women I can be my calm quiet self around and not worry about pretending to be someone else. I could sit quietly on the sidelines and listen if I wished. I could watch with the deep concentration that my face sometimes shows and not be asked to smile because I looked like something was wrong. I felt understood. I felt included and like I belonged just for being me.

Dusk at Manzanita
I arrived on Wednesday feeling unsure of what was to come. Trying not to have expectations but they came anyway. I was worried about the dynamics of the group. Each of us so different yet so much the same. I was sure I would be the black sheep. The one with less talent and less to offer. I know this is a story I created in my own head but it was there nonetheless. I feel like I am in such a transitional time right now, trying to find my voice while continuing on this crooked creative path I am following. What I found was that every single one of these ladies are also on their own crooked paths. Searching for that next small step. Every one of us encased in a beautiful cocoon of transition. Some are starting to crack open and spread their wings while others are waiting just awhile longer until the time is right.

Group Photo by Rebecca Murphy
Meghan, Elizabeth, Melissa, Sarah, Darlene, Sophia, Rebecca and Emily. You have helped to heal me just a little more. Lindsey and Stefanie: we missed you greatly and your presence was felt and with us every step of the way. My heart is already longing for next year. The thought of having this to look forward to every year of our lives is the greatest gift. Come Hell or high water I will be there next year to do it all over again.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

On my way

I'm boarding a plane today to the Oregon coast. (The currently very wet and rainy coast). But my spirits are high because I will be spending time with an inspirational group of women who can only be described as Rock Stars.

Earlier this year when Meghan inquired if I would be interested in being part of a creative women's group she was forming I jumped on the chance. I literally responded back with a big fat yes within the hour. I felt so honored to be included in a group of amazing artists, photographers, writers and more. Seriously honored. I wasn't sure what I could bring to this group but knew it was most definitely something I had been seeking for a long time. That sense of belonging. This Tribe is now one of a precious few I feel honored to be welcomed into this year. I am so thankful to be connecting with other creative souls and even more grateful for the courage I have had to reach out for that little nudge of inspiration when I have needed it most.

I've been quite around the blogging world this week just sinking in. Preparing for summer vacation with my daughter, planning trips with my husband and celebrating our 9th wedding anniversary. I'm hoping to return next week refreshed and ready to start creating and sharing again.