Well, I’m back after a couple of days absence. You know what’s tough? Sitting at a computer all day writing to earn a pay check and then coming home and sitting at a computer in the evening to write something that fills up your spirit.
I miss physical work. I have been a canoeing guide and landscaper and gardener and I worked with children and youth and adults with intellectual disabilities and drove a school bus and I have volunteered lots in animal shelters and with young offenders and soccer players and volleyball teams and that list is just getting warmed up.
I loved journalism. I’m super curious and it satiated my desire to know about everything, but I never got any personal writing accomplished.
Now, in communications, I truly am a desk jockey. My neck definitely doesn’t appreciate it.
Hmm. A conundrum presents itself. I don’t mean to go and on about #HelenSeymour – I don’t know the woman at all – but when I heard the radio interview she gave where she spoke about giving up her “career” to serve full time in a restaurant in order to save her mind for the creative writing process, it resonated with me.
I am often far more creative in times when I am physically active in my day job. Especially the gardening and canoeing. There’s time for ideas to grow and germinate. Imagination has time to run wild until you settle on one or two ideas or characters or themes that would be good to continue working with once at home on the computer.
A good friend told me that there is a landscape company in Toronto that only hires artists and I thought that was about the most brilliant thing I’d heard in a long time. It’s great when you hear about people making space for others who don’t move to the same beat as what’s expected by societal norms.
I used to work with adults with special needs. One fellow in particular could sing like a bird but he did it so very quietly. Any other sound would drown him out but if you could get the place silent and prick up your ears, he sang beautifully. Brought tears to my eyes to listen to him. He also moved very slowly and methodically. One day a co-worker said to me, “If the world would just slow down, there’s nothing wrong with [him].”
You know what? She was right. If everybody could simply and graciously allow space for one another’s differences and unique abilities to be the shiny bits and potential that we collectively work to help each other actualize, rather than identifying those aspects as the things that makes us weird or wrong, imagine the loving and magnificent world we would be living in.