We recently had a visit from some old friends. The visit was great – good food, conversation, walks, dog & kid antics, etc. However, some of the conversation gave me pause, and I am trying desperately NOT to think about it (see below). My friend has been on a spiritual quest for the last decade or so and has had some amazing insights which I think apply directly to the creative endeavor. Her study has involved a lot of silent meditation, and she was describing the importance of discovering how to allow one’s mind to be free of input – to be quiet – to get past the to-do lists, the regret lists, the fun facts, etc. and to allow what is below all the noise to bubble up. While talking to my friend I realized that I am terrified of my own mind. This shouldn’t have been too much of a surprise to me because for years our family mantra has been, “make friends with your brain.”. I think I applied the directive to forcing my wayward mind to behave and do my taxes and stop complaining and be grateful, etc. Not to the really important part of the friendship . . . First off, I am terrified of the should dos – I am terrified of the should have dones, and I’m terrified of the wish I had nots. I don’t think I have ever allowed my mind to venture past those horrors – I do everything in my power to stop before the pandora’s box is opened. Luckily for me, technology has been an incredible “enabler” in this mission: podcasts, books on tape, iPods, laptops – I am never without an interesting interview, book review, news story, album or novel to make sure I never meet my own mind – let alone befriend the monster. I am going to make a resolution to creep forward and try to lure whatever is down there up to the surface. But first, I need to get to the grocery store, and pick up the car – drats, I should have weeded the garden, and I wish I hadn’t made such a fool of myself in the second grade play . . .
Recently visiting baby feet were too cute to pass up.