Reach high, for stars lie hidden in your soul. Dream deep, for every dream precedes the goal. -- Pamela Vaull Starr
Every week I have been glued to the television watching The Voice on NBC. The show gives me such hope. It is inspiring to watch talented artists go out on the stage and give it their all to take a shot for their dreams. I can't begin to understand the nerves of steel they must develop, especially these last two artists who had to slug it out at the end. They both were so graceful and composed despite it all.
Since my stroke, I 've lost a bit of my nerve. I revved up in February with several design projects and an exhibition opening. The stress took me out and it took most of March to recover from the medical fallout. So I am having to learn my new norm which is so weird. I am a middle aged artist whose paid her dues and thought she had cut herself a clear path, but no. I have to keep slugging away to reach my dreams even though I don't always have the energy to get out of bed. But I do, even if it isn't until 1pm and I end up working in my pajamas the entire day. That's okay, it's part of my new normal. You can't give up on the very thing that fuels your spirit.
I used to play a game -what if I lost my hands and my eyesight in an accident. It's a scary thought, but hey, I think it is worth contemplating what could be the worst case scenario so you can be prepared in the event. I can see the eyes roll of several friends as I write this. Sorry , but sometimes one must face one's fears and be prepared. I think if I weren't a visual artist, I'd want to be a writer. I can't hold a note if I tried, otherwise I think I'd love the thrill of singing and fronting a band. Yeah, that would be cool. But I don't wish to break eardrums, so I'd stick to writing. And without hands, I'd do like I did the first few months after my stroke when I couldn't really type, I used dictation software to teach online and to write my blog. It wasn't perfect, but it worked. I'm a creative person and need art in my life in some form. That passion is what wakes me up in the morning. What wakes you up? I hope it is more than pushing the time clock and if you are then for whom or what are you clocking in? Is it a wife, child, or granddchild? Don't lose site of that passion even when bored to distraction.
And that is what I learned from watching the Voice, you have to follow your beliefs and passions and risk it all to get to where you know you need to be even if you have panic attacks every day and want to give up because it is so hard. I also follow the progress of other stroke survivors and watch how years later they are thrilled to just walk. That is the first step in living their dreams. Dreams are about taking forward steps, one wobbly step at a time.