I read a quote today that really hit the nail on the head:
“Life isn’t about finding yourself, it’s about creating yourself.”
If I try to find myself, where should I look? At home? In my classroom? In the eyes of my students, colleagues, friends and family? Wherever I look I will see what is there but I won’t see me because I am not solely comprised of those things. I may be a combination of those things, or contain certain elements found there, but I am not defined by those specifics.
I am more excited about creating myself. Who do I want to be? What do I want to be known for? I am a writer, a teacher, a wife, a mother, a sister and a cousin. I am a want- to-be gardener, a sun lover, and a beachcomber. I seek knowledge and expanded learning opportunities in art, in writing, in reading and in craft making. I am creating myself built on the base of who I was born to be and the ingredients given to me for 53 years stirred with desire, curiosity and hope.
I read an article in the Topanga Messenger about a man named Michael O’Rourke. He was having a Tea at his Institute of Courage on Sunday, August 9th at 4:00. The event was free, but reservations were required. His topic:
High Tea, Scones and Recessionomics 101
Who was this man? What is the Institute of Courage? I had no idea, but I can’t help wanting to learn about everything to do with economics and reinventing myself to create a better life, a simpler life. So I asked my friends if they would want to go, but no one was interested in attending. I called to find out a little information and left my name on a voice mail. If I heard back, I would go, and if I didn’t hear back then I would have lost nothing. Around 3:00 on Saturday, I heard back and got the parking information, so, Sunday I drove to Topanga and went to the Institute of Courage; a beautiful building, a five-star building with a beautiful buffet of scones, tea and all the fixings. The hostess turned out to be my daughters’ former dance teacher and the coincidences didn’t stop there. There were many Topanga people I knew, including parents from school and other community members. It was a friendly, welcoming atmosphere and the scones were to die for! When Michael started talking, I realized why my attendance was meant to be. He talked to my situation and was so motivational-encouraging us to think outside the box, try something we haven’t done before. His advice to:
Drive away from fear.
Structure your life-downsize for now. “It’s not forever.”
He encouraged us to grow from the bottom (economically speaking) up, be thankful and realize we are blessed, stand up and be accounted for, and care about your neighbor and community.
What timely advice! I am interested in knowing this self-made man who has had his share of downs, but has turned it into an “up.” I am encouraged to develop my creative, artistic self and at the same time, to develop my intellectual self. The bottom really can be the beginning of a new life.