Creative people. Creative types. You know those people. The right-brained oddballs, who dress funny and speak funny and are just out there, you know? As much as I hate to admit it, I have labeled them this way. It’s an adjective I have used for those I am a bit jealous of because they have something I don’t have and are something I can’t be. I use it as a descriptor, a label, a separator.
Recently, I came across the phrase “the creating life”… and I like it. It’s an approach to life that looks for ways to grow things. To make things more lovely, more meaningful, more effective, more productive, more whole. Perhaps to add to what comes along or maybe just to shuffle things in their places or offer an alternative point of view. It’s lively, abundant and fruitful.
And it’s a verb. It’s active. It’s present tense. It’s something I can do and keep doing. It seeks and, by its very nature, it finds. It seems a very good way to live.
Word Finds keep scrolling across my Facebook wall. Those grids with scrambled letters asking you, “What is the first word you see?” Then, if you dare to share your discovery in the comments, you can find out what other people have seen. An interesting exercise. My mind races…
- does my “first word” really say anything about me?
- do I dare share it in the comments?
- which would say something about me…
- oh, okay, I’ll share it. Today’s word was “joy.” That’s a good word.
- I wonder if that means I have joy on the brain.
- oh, look at that. Other people saw “wealth.” I would not have shared that if that was my first word.
- and there’s “team.” I saw that second. Maybe I should have shared that one. It looks better for someone in my business.
Oh my goodness. How quickly I jump from freely seeking to framing judgment. From what some might describe as creative and/or right-brained to analytical and/or left-brained. I dance across the hemispheres.
I like the creative. I’m not too fond of the analytical. Because it takes me places I would rather not go. (worry, second-guessing, judgment, anxiety, even paranoia) Alas, it is what takes me through most of my day. Except my mornings. When I let the creative out to play. And she shuffles words and plays with rhythms. She imagines pictures and colors in sights and sounds. The analyst steps aside, just sweeping up the bits of stardust that get too far afield and tossing them back into the swirl.
In the flourish of morning, I sometimes pick up the “Jumble” from the newspaper. I used to adore doing the “Junior Jumbles” when I was a kid. Now I have graduated to the adult version. The Atlanta paper prints them as I remember them. The Washington Post has re-invented them. Now they are Jumble Crosswords. That means there are “clues” to the unscrambling of letters.
Oh my. I unscramble with the ‘right brain’ and solve with the ‘left brain.’ Now what? I’ve no choice but to leap.
It’s the leap of trust that there will be both footing and a leaping back. The miraculous thing is that I can. I have spent all my years knowing and yet confirming that the analytical is there. The Rock of Gibraltar. It’s not going anywhere. It will be there. A firm foundation.
But the other land. Where things are fluid and ever-changing. Where there are rivers of surprise, fields of delight and sometimes monsters around the bend. This is a land of discovery. It’s not rock, but it’s not slippery. I wouldn’t want to stay (t)here all the time, but it’s fun when I visit.
What the Word Finds and the Jumble have helped me discover is that I can leap from one ‘land’ to the other without falling into an abyss. I am welcome in both. In fact, I am more agile when I do. A bit more flexible. A bit more powerful. A bit more “joy” full.
It may actually be this leaping that makes me unique. Or at least different. I must figure out whether fantasy-land is open for business in the afternoons. Or perhaps it has evening hours.
One thing is for sure. The Jumbles are a breeze. The Sudokus tie me in a knot. Perhaps I haven’t changed as much as I thought. I guess it’s nice to think that the older me is still the same me. But it’s hard to be agile when all those thoughts are weighing you down.
Maybe I need to lighten up…. into my afternoons.