Hi. I wrote this in my last newsletter. Then realized I'mprobably leaving people out who haven't signed up yet. So, here you go:
It's amazing to me when you come across something you needed so badly and you never knew it. Like the Universe or God or some unknowing stranger put it directly in your path at x time. Some karmic spy mission happening around you.
Despite all the good in my life right now that I should be concentrating on and all the blessings I should be counting, I was feeling pretty dumpy this morning. Directionless and voiceless and tired. That feeling you get when everything seems difficult. Cloudy.
I decided to get out and go to to the gym. And I really didn't want to. I drove there dreading it. It's so gray outside. It's raining. It will be crowded because of all the new year's resolutions. But I went anyway. I walked in, picked up a random magazine and plopped my sorry ass down on an elliptical machine next to turbo-girl (I think those girls are put there by gym management to make you feel guilty). So, I opened the magazine and was bombarded by the smell of perfume, ads for makeup...haircolor...skin creams...wrinkle remedies...none of which was helping me feel any better. So I flipped fast, getting frustrated.
Then I stopped. Closed my eyes and concentrated on what my body was doing. My heartbeat. The sweat on my neck. I opened my eyes and saw an article in front of me about a novelist who was stuck. I half-smiled. The type was small but for some reason I didn't have a problem reading it through my workout.
So this novelist was stuck and decided to get out, too. She went to the library where she found a book on Eva Hesse, a artist who also felt stuck. Eva had written a letter to a fellow artist asking for advice. He wrote back telling her to stop being so hard on herself. Stop being a perfectionist. Stop grumbling. Stop caring what people think and JUST PLAY.
Stop forcing yourself to do good art. Instead try to do really bad art. Stinkers. Stop judging. And just play.
Those words changed Eva Hesse's life. She went on to become a great sculptor, doing whimsical, feminie art. And there I was on that elliptical, feeling my life transform, too. Feeling more light- hearted and free. Smiling. Wanting to play.