But, what if I had come close? I think my life would have taken a radical turn. I probably wouldn't be an artist today. I would have studied something more socially acceptable in college. Or art would be something that I would dabble in part time at the kitchen table on weekends. I know now that I would be miserable. ( Heck...I can't go a day or two, not creating...or I get very cranky. I think it's known as AWS....art withdrawal syndrome.)
Anyway, a long time ago, I packed all those painful memories of high school off to sea... to be forgotten. I intentionally forgot people, memories, names, places, etc. I did a really good job of it.
But, the suitcase came back.
I tried to ignore it...but I just kept tripping over it. It's been very easy over the years to blame others for the miserable time that I had in high school and the earlier part of college. I think we all look back at people from high school who we dislike because they made life difficult for us. But...did they really? Yes, there is a certain part of teasing, and bullying that goes on in our earlier years. Yet...now with a little more wisdom from age behind my belt...I'm realizing I had the power to change the situation. I could have been more outgoing...I could have tried to get to know people. I didn't have to be the shrinking violet, I could have made more effort. I chose that path....or did I?
Possibly the Universe had different plans for me. I needed to feel all those painful experiences for a reason...to be a better artist. It would help me communicate emotion through my art. It made me passionate about what I do and who I am.
But, what do I do with the suitcase of memories and people? I decided to open it and let these people and memories back in my life. I can't say that it hasn't been painful all over again...because at times it has. I decided to own it...to be accepting...to feel it...and to be thankful for the experience and journey. It has, and is making me who I am today...an artist.
Here's a new video for you: