Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Honesty (with a bit of repetition thrown in)

I am in the swell of my life cycle where the creative juices are flowing. Before I went to sleep on Sunday night I spent an hour or so setting goals, making plans, brainstorming jobs - trying to lay out a manageable plan for juggling all of life's components. But more than putting it down on paper, I sensed a shift in myself that I was moving back towards the me that gets things done, that makes connections and contributes in a meaningful way.

The challenge is, at some point, I start to reach limits with whatever new, or previously abandoned endeavor I take on. I may take a huge leap in the direction of a long put-off hobby (like singing) and suddenly make it a part of my weekly routine. But then, in the midst of it, I'll hit a wall and remember I don't have the voice to make music in the way I want to. I don't play guitar well enough to write songs that accommodate my limited range, or find a new venue for the maelstrom of thoughts making their own rhythm in my head. And then friends or family step in and say, "stop being so hard on yourself." And I say, "well it's hard not to - because I have reached this wall in absolutely everything I've ever taken on." A limit to my natural ability, to my dedication or willingness to work, or to the feasibility of making something a permanent reality. It's really hard to make this case - because when I'm in this upswing of energy doors open like crazy, and experiences are had, and I tell the story the best I can. People then think, "it's been done," while I retreat back into the more shadowy areas of myself and wonder how these journeys are to continue when I can't find it in me to take them any further?

I guess it's just hard when even in moments of inspiration and the taking of first steps, you can see the writing on the future wall that says, "you will go no further than just beyond what you can presently imagine."

11 Comments:

Blogger Natalie said...

That sounds like so much of what goes on in my creative process. It's insane and depressing. I heart your CD btw, thanks!

1/09/2008 12:18 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Ohhh, I can so relate to what you are saying. But you've grown so immensely in the last year and you're still growing. And you're really an amazing person. You'll get past this limit. And the next one and the next one.

1/09/2008 1:56 PM  
Blogger The [Cherry] Ride said...

Even of that is true, can't you focus on how you enjoy singing rather than trying to take it to the next level? This year I'm trying to put more focus on enjoying the things that I have vs. what I want.

1/09/2008 1:59 PM  
Blogger Mood Indigo said...

Natalie - glad you can relate, but hope we both take a nod from Cherry's suggestion below :) I'm glad you like the cd!!!

Lisa - you're so sweet. It's true - I need to have faith that just because I've dropped the ball on things in the past, that there will be a point when I can get to the next step, in whatever I'm undertaking.

Cherry - You're so right. This all plays into some much bigger, much deeper insecurities I have - and it's important to me to get out out - hence calling this post honesty. Clearly I need some perspective - but I also have to acknowledge sometimes when I'm feeling defeated. Singing is just an example - but I wish I could convey how frustrating it is to love music as much as I do, to love the physical sensation of singing - but to know your voice only goes so far. To hear in your head how something should sound, what would make it beautiful, but knowing you can't push it or you'll lose your voice all together. The only reason I'm facing this is because right now, I'm singing by myself - and ultimately, that's not as enjoyable to me as creating harmonies and mixing my voice with someone else's. But again, you are RIGHT, and I need to let things be and enjoy the gift in front of me, both in this and all the bigger issues to which I tend to apply the same attitude.

1/09/2008 2:18 PM  
Blogger Peter DeWolf said...

Of all your posts, I think this is the one I can most identify with.

1/09/2008 5:31 PM  
Blogger Art said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

1/12/2008 7:47 PM  
Blogger Art said...

(Previous deletion for typo.)

Are you in your 30's? I've found the excitement of the creative process can be spoiled by knowing you're over 30, and you're not going to get famous. You will not be on MTV "Cribs." Whatever you're pursuing may not even fill your gas tank. It's just...a hobby. Time could be "better spent" reading about investing.

It doesn't stop me from trying, though.

1/12/2008 7:49 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

You always manage to hit the nail on the head, MI. Thanks for this.

1/12/2008 8:20 PM  
Blogger Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Best of luck to you with your soul searching!

When I do soul searching I go right to The Godfather of Soul, Mr. James Brown. He's dead though, so I'm fucked.

1/14/2008 1:25 PM  
Blogger Eve said...

I experience something similar, but also realize that I am the one who's limiting myself. Knowing it and doing something about it are different though.

1/31/2008 9:54 AM  
Blogger Eve said...

Also, I have an acquaintance who's a musician (still has a day job but goes on tour around the world) and he is possibly the worst guitar player I've ever heard. What he does have is lovely lyrics, voice, a pretty face, and an ego as big as any celeb.

1/31/2008 9:55 AM  

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