We're almost mid-October and I haven't posted any pumpkins yet. I consider that a little rebellious. Don't get me wrong, I love fall! Especially after living in Utah for so long...I really REALLY miss it here in California. I made my favorite Butternut Squash Soup last night and it helped...but it's still not the same. My problem with all of the pumpkin decor pics is the impracticality of it. I look at a picture of pumpkins going up both sides of a staircase and think, "Where do you walk!? There's no space for your feet, or your kids feet on that staircase anymore." I get it. It's not supposed to make sense, I guess? Everything is supposed to be pretty and perfect all of the time and our Instagram lives are supposed to look like celebrity magazine lives with all of the festivity and smiling and perfectly curated ensembles. My problem with that is that it's not real. And I try to be real as often as possible. I don't have a personal chef, or a cleaning lady (yet), or a stylist, or a personal assistant. I have a husband and three kids and I'm in the middle of starting a business all on my own and trying to make everything work. My life is chaos! So is yours, I'm sure! I'm not saying that things shouldn't be pretty, hello!, that's my job. Of course I want everything to look good. The thing that I'm realizing as I look at Instagram and websites (way more often now than I used to) is that I'm practical. I'm turning into kind of a minimalist. I like clean and simple, and I like things to make sense. When a space gets too cluttery I start to have a little mini panic attack and I lose focus. So there you go, something new and deep and dark that you now know about me. I'm going to post pumpkins...don't worry. I just haven't found or taken the right one yet. (I'm also kind of a perfectionist...so there's that.)
The last month has been one of changes for our family! Rhett has been working full time for Fresno Fire for four weeks (and LOVING it), both of my boys are in full day school, my daughter is in preschool twice a week, and I'm starting this here little business venture of mine. Change is good. I feel like everything is falling into place and we are finally settling into our new normal.
I'm in the middle of getting my business license set up, and business accounts, and this website, and trying to generate some income so that I can order samples, and somewhere to store them all, and... and... and all of it can get a little overwhelming. The funny thing is, I'm not freaking out! It's taken me a long time (I mean loooooong time) to really feel like this is what I'm supposed to be doing, and I finally do. The timing was just never right for us. We have been so busy and focused on getting Rhett to where he needed to be, and as soon as that happened, everything started to fall into place for me. The fire experience was all-consuming. There really was no way I could've been doing anything else these last three years. We were in survival mode for sure. I would assume anyone who has made it through law school, or residencies, or tax season with an accountant husband, extreme financial/health problems, etc could relate. You feel trapped inside a giant stress ball of anxiety and emotion and then everything suddenly gets released and you feel like you can breathe again. Then it's on to the next thing!
The thing is, I've known all along that I was going to work. I've had confirmation after confirmation that this would happen, and so I'm good with it. I'm excited for it. I feel like I have this pent-up-profession-energy that has needed an outlet all this time and finally has one. Like I said...change is good. I'm excited for new stresses, new growth, and new experiences. That's what it's all about!
I've been wanting to start my own business for a few years now. First, there was talking about it. Then, there was casual action here and there...an Instagram account, this website, picking around the internet trying to get inspired by something, somewhere, to lead me in the right direction. I have been flying this same circling pattern for literally two years. My Weebly account just informed me yesterday that my two year plan had been renewed and it was shocking, to say the least. Two years? Seriously? Nothing has changed in two years?
I start to feel guilty about it, but then I think back on my life and remember all of the things I've been busy doing. I've been happily/stressfully married for almost 8 years. (Mostly happy, I promise...who's not stressed!?) Two weeks before our first anniversary, we had Macsen. Eighteen months later we had Maddoc. Two and half years after that came Margot. In between each of those there were surgeries, challenges, depression, and pain, not to mention just trying to raise them and keep them alive on a day to day basis. My husband finished his degree, worked in a field he wasn't thriving in, and then switched careers to do one of the hardest things out there...firefighting. We sold our house in Utah to move back to California, be closer to family, and get the dream fire job. It took a year longer than we expected. In all of that time he was working himself ragged (upwards of 80-90 hours a week, regularly), and I was at home with our three kids, 6, 5, and 2 years old. Our life has been seriously hectic.
We're finally coming out of it and seeing that light at the end of the tunnel. We got a job, we have great insurance, we have financial security, health, a great neighborhood and schools. We both have been able to breathe again and finally shift our focus to the "next thing"...which is me. Me? Really? As we started talking about it and thinking about it, a funny thing started to happen. After all of the years of planning and preparing and stressing, all of the sudden I am having these amazing breakthroughs. All in the past week! I can think clearly, I am having these out-of-body creative flows where information seems to just be passing through me and I get glimpses of what could be, and what I have to do to get there. It's been shocking... remarkable... and crazy!
There's a book circling around called Big Magic, by Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat Pray Love) that I started reading a few months ago and it has definitely been the catalyst to understanding a lot of what's happening right now with my creative process. She talks about this concept of ideas flowing freely through the universe, and that we all have the ability to take advantage of them and use them, but if we don't they get passed along to the next person who is ready and willing to try. I have had this experience SO many times! My husband and family can attest to this. I have ideas, I say them out loud, and within a week, a month, a year, they're out there. Someone else has done exactly what I was thinking about doing. You've had it too, I'm sure! The thing is, I wasn't ready. It hasn't been my time, until now, apparently. Just in the past few days, things have totally changed. I was willing, I started saying out loud that I was ready. We started talking more about it, and boom. 'Aha' moments left and right. Right now, I am sitting on about 100 different ideas that have just come at me from out of nowhere over just the last few days and it's overwhelming to say the least. I feel like my head is constantly spinning. Then last night, I talked to my sister about it, and she gave me her best advice, "Start small. Focus on where you're going to start, because you have to start first. Stop worrying about everything else, and just figure that out first." It was obvious sounding, but it was what I needed to hear. Today, when I thought about starting from the beginning, it all came together in my head. It was literally Magic. Then I went back and read through some of Gilbert's book, and found my favorite passage highlighted on page 96 and it rang even truer to me than it had the first time.
"Who the hell do you think you are?" your darkest inner voices will demand.
"It's funny you should ask," you can reply. "I'll tell you who I am: I am a child of God, just like anyone else. I am a constituent of this universe. I have invisible spirit benefactors who believe in me, and who labor alongside me. The fact that I am here at all is evidence that I have the right to be here. I have a right to my own voice and a right to my own vision. I have a right to collaborate with creativity, because I myself am a product and a consequence of Creation. I'm on a mission of artistic liberation, so let the girl go."
Read the book. And no one's paying me to say that. Mostly because no one knows who I am, because if I knew how to get paid for that, I most definitely would be. ;) I have a lot to learn. I'm on a mission of artistic liberation which also includes figuring out how to get paid for what I'm about to do. I better get back to that. Thanks for reading my first blog post. Do people say that? How do you end one of these? Who am I even talking to? I feel like Doogie Howser.