If you've been following along for a while then you know that the topic of creativity and motherhood is a passion of mine. Perhaps because I am living it everyday, but more likely it's because what started as a stumbling block became a building block.
I've mentioned before that when I became a mother it threw me for a loop. I questioned my identity, my artistic practice and at times my sanity. I struggled to find examples of that women that I wanted to be. As I moved forward and began to forge my own path and my own definition of what I wanted my life to look like being a mother was a huge part of it.
I look around now at this amazing community of mother-artist that I know. I see that a lot of them have found more creativity post children then prior. What's the connection?
Motherhood certainly makes you self reflect and it also made me a lot less concerned what other people thought. Although to be fair I wasn't one that over thought that to begin with. Yet, now my concerns were laser focused on the happiness of my family and myself. And I've found that those two are closely linked.
I will say that although I always knew the meaning in my work the drive wasn't always there. In those first few months of being a new mom I wondering if I would ever be an 'artist" again, made me realize that it was non negotiable to my happiness. That for me to thrive I needed to nurture that part of myself. I also knew that it didn't matter just then what I was creating, as long as I was creating for myself. Once the fog started to lift, I decided that if it was important I would make time for it. Neither of my children were good sleepers, and both liked to be entertained, but I am fortunate that I have family help. So I asked for it. I asked for it to make studio time a priority.
A few things started to happen. A sense of urgency in the studio, and understanding of what mental space I needed and this gigantic rush of creativity. I feel like somehow the flood gates opened. That what used to come in trickles or even spurts, but not consistently rushed forward. And it did so with an urgency that was so frenetic and overwhelming that I was almost powerless to do anything but paint. I had to get it out.
Becoming a mother also leads to a lot of self reflection and projecting on what you want your children's life to look like. When my daughter looks at her mother what does she see? What does our life as a family look like. Creativity is so important to me and the power of art is a lesson I want my children to know. At the very least to be an example of making a life you love, by following your passion.
Maybe there is a connection to your own inner child. Perhaps we open up our sense of wonder and play and that invites the muses in. This miracle of new life reminds us of that miracle we are. That this one life is meant to be joyful and special and celebrated. How better as an artist am I to do that than to create?
I now knoq that even if that muse dances away for a day, a week a month. She'll return and just maybe she knows better than I do that I need a rest. So I try to take heed, and not stress.
I don't doubt there is some big connection for me. This spectacular journey that I am on is all bound together and the magic of motherhood has infused my creative spirit in more ways than I ever thought. And I've only just begun