What is it to live a creative life? Most of the entries on this blog are about the enchantment, the magic, the joy. But, as with life, creativity is not consistently enchanting or happy or joyful.
A law of physics says that “For every reaction there is an equal and opposite reaction”.
Does that same truth exist when living a creative life? For every moment of joy, is there a moment of pain? Without the pain and lows and downs, could we even know the difference? Does it take the pain of life, to make us appreciate the joy?
Think about when you have a head cold. Nothing really makes you appreciate good health like a raging head cold. That low point….makes the forthcoming highs even better.
I hate getting derailed. That’s what I call it when the creativity shuts down. If the creativity is a train, and most of the time it’s going down its tracks…then what happens when it isn’t functioning?
No one can function all the time. No one can operate balls-to-the-wall 100% flat-out for all their waking hours. My level of drive and ambition are daunting. I keep that hidden from the general world. People who know me only casually only see the pleasant side of me. I want to leave them with the impression, “Oh she’s fun to hang around with.”
But at my core…my life is all about “Making it.” That definition refers to success, to showbusiness, to personal accomplishment and achievement. I’ve been on this train since I was born. I didn’t choose it. I was born to it. Once I learned to talk, then that’s what I talked about. People ask me why I write or why I make music. The answer is: because I have to.
Because I can’t not do this.
I don’t have a choice. This…creativity….is as essential to me as oxygen.
So, how do we handle the shut-downs, the derailments?
I’ve been through a tough couple of weeks, and had to put the book process on hold. Finally…finally…yesterday I got back to proofing the book. When I first started this phase of editing, I figured it was three weeks worth of work, but wow….double that amount of time, and it’s still not ready. So…you keep moving forward. You keep having that drive, and working towards the goal. If the book is front burner…then the music and recording and ‘figuring out the cameras and video-ography’ will have to be back burner for awhile.
It’s a juggling act. I can handle the juggling act.
What drives me crazy is the down times–the times when the body or mind or soul says, “I’ve had enough!” Shut downs can take many forms. Sometimes there is a physical sickness; sometimes there is a psychological depression; sometimes you just want to run away from home. So, you handle those moments and give your body and soul what they need–whether it consists of a break or chicken soup or putting on boots and driving a hot car down a long highway. You have to feed the soul…you have to maintain that mental balance.
You trust that you will find your footing again. You have to trust that the creativity will find its way. You have to trust that you will get through whatever obstacles life throws at you, and you keep on going.
You have to trust that you will find your way.