I am now celebrating my first blog anniversary. One year ago today, I started this blog with no background color, no profile picture and no idea how the whole experience would affect my life. I soon fixed the background color and added a profile picture, but it’s taken me a year to find out if I could really do the things I set out to do on my fifty-ninth birthday.
I have completed my List of Fifty Things. I have created a 16” x 20” painting. I have made an art doll. Just in time for the last day of my sixtieth year, I made an art quilt. Of course, I never intended to procrastinate quite that long, but I’m not surprised that it happened. I’m guessing you are not surprised, either. The point is, I did it. I set some creative goals and I achieved them. I’m feeling good about that.
Really good. My inner children want to sing a song and do a happy dance and eat cupcakes, but staying up until midnight last night has left this sixty-year-old woman too tired to throw a big party, even if most of the guests would be non-corporeal manifestations of my own consciousness. The spirit is willing but the flesh wants a nap.
I do want to celebrate here, though. I love all the things on my List of Fifty Things, especially the Big Three, but the one accomplishment that gives me the most joy is the blog itself. It got off to a shaky start. I did a few posts in February and March, setting some reasonable goals, and then I disappeared from the blogosphere until July. I got fed up with myself for not doing the one thing I most wanted to do and I finally made the commitment to publish a post at least once a week, whether I had met any of my creative goals or not.
I treasure that commitment. I love having this weekly date with my writing self. I feel safe knowing that I can be trusted to show up and write something, no matter what happens. I feel relaxed knowing that it doesn’t have to be brilliant. I had to give up blog perfectionism early on and that set me free to just be honest and have a good time. This is playtime for me now, and I will not be giving it up.
I’m not giving up the other creative pursuits, either. I still have inner children waiting for their Altoid Tin Shrines. I rediscovered my love for sewing and embroidery and I’m excited about trying new projects. I am surprised to realize that the one thing that pulls me the most right now is the desire to learn more about painting. That one 16” x 20” painting changed the way I look at the world. For several days after it was finished, my eyes saw possible paintings everywhere and the whole world looked prettier. The feeling faded as I moved on to other necessary projects, but my heart is full of hope that it will return and grow stronger if I put my attention into painting again.
I believe painting will be my focus for my sixty-first year. I haven’t decided yet whether I will set specific goals about that. I’ll have to let you know. I need to rest and recover from that last project, and then we’ll see. Meanwhile, I promised I would show you that last project. The tale of its construction would take up several blog posts, with numerous citations of Murphy’s Law, but I will just say that there ended up being a lot more handwork than I had planned and I believe I have mastered the blanket stitch. It’s highly imperfect and I will not be showing you the back of it, but I love the way it turned out. If you clicked through to WordPress, you’ve already seen it in close-up. After a whole year of blogging, I finally have a header.
Do you think it’s colorful enough?