Matching calamity with serenity



“Procrastinating is an art/I do it exceptionally well/I do it so it feels like hell/I do it so that it feels real/I guess you could say I’ve a call” – Sylvia Plath

Just kidding, that’s not that how that line in her poem goes, but it’s how my brain remembers it because I just am that great at procrastinating. I procrastinate because I’m in Fear. I’m in Fear because of the calamity I create in my mind about how things “should” be.

I had an influx of ideas over the past couple of weeks about the direction I want to take with future paintings and the collection of essays I’m working on. I even took some steps toward that vision.  Then Fear came strolling in, stroked his beard, cocked his head and said, “That’s a little ambitious, don’t you think?” So I stopped.

I went to a networking mixer thing at Thumbprint Gallery in La Jolla on Saturday. It was nice to be around other artists. As I was looking, rather getting sucked into, the beautiful artwork on the walls, I really started to feel the whole Imposter Syndrome sink in. Vanessa, who do you think you are calling yourself an artist? You cannot paint details like these real artists. Also, you haven’t written a new first draft in days, *balk*.

Truthfully, it bummed me out but also weirdly motivated me. I scrapped the original concentration of the pieces I wanted to work on and started a new series. So far, the feedback has been positive but I’m weary of accepting feedback at all right now. At least, not yet. Right now, I need to find my voice again. I’ll work on mastering the techniques later.

At church, Pastor Miles did the whole service in Spanish. He is not a native Spanish speaker so it was kind of a big deal. He explained that his English mind wants to interfere in his Spanish mind while he’s speaking, so he has these two sides of his mind that are fighting for attention while he’s trying to control his accent, his grammar, and the culture of the language. He tied this into our worldly mind interferes with our godly minds and we end up getting trapped in the culture of this world.

I don’t want to be trapped in the culture of this world. I don’t want to live in Fear of how bad my self-expression may be, or the things I may miss out on if I don’t get what’s inside me OUT of me. I don’t want to live in self-consciousness and lack of worth. It creates chaos. It is a calamity.

I want to listen to and live by my godly mind. I want to listen to what God says and thinks about me. He’s the Serenity to any doubt and fear that I may have. It makes it a lot easier to write and paint when you’re writing and painting for Someone who will love you and not judge you, no matter how badly you blend acrylics or relish a run-on sentence.