Reading Daniel McCarthy's article in Music + Film had me reflecting on the pathways that lead to becoming a creative person. These reflections were sparked again as I read an article in the New York Times giving an account of how to raise a creative child. For me, it was my childhood curiosity and thirst for new experiences that set me on the path to becoming a creative person.
Looking back, I was involved in every and any activity that sparked my interest. One day I would go to ballet class, the next horseback riding camp, Tae Kwon Do, clogging rehearsal, art class, swim team practice; every day was a new experience. I am still amazed at how many outlets, creative and non-creative, I was able to pursue as a child.
Why did I have the desire to experience everything?
Why wasn't I able to stick with just one activity?
It was my desire for change, my love of experience, making its first appearances in my life. I was always excited for each new move, rehearsal, or challenge.
I continue to be fascinated by how our childhood experiences impact our lives and foreshadow our adulthood.
I am taken back to my childhood each time I drive on these flat, windy, and hilly back roads of the Midwest. The little girl who would jump at the chance to have a new experience comes out again and again. The girl who would go on long road trips with her father – always looking out the window and taking in the scenery - rides shotgun every time. That same excitement drives me as I coast down unfamiliar roads and let my curiosity take the wheel. Every stop sign, every turn, and every rock under the wheels, leads to a new experience.
There is always that moment that brings me back to my childhood days of exploration:
The moment when I come over the crest of a hill,
I can see for miles,
and immediately have the urge to stop and take it all in.
Everyday I go out and shoot these vast landscapes, I realize how much in this world there is to see and to experience. We just have to let our inner child take over – allow ourselves time to pursue dreams that thrill and excite our inner child. If we gave ourselves permission to put all of our hard work and efforts towards these ideas that drive us, who knows what we would be able to accomplish.
It is never too late to pursue what you have always wanted to do. It is never too late to learn. It is never too late to take that leap towards a new path.
It is your journey.
It all begins with small moments –Putting aside an evening, an afternoon, a few hours to focus on your dream– until it becomes more. Soon you will find yourself wanting to work on it during all of your free time. When that happens, that is how you know you are tapping into your greatness, into what has been awaiting your arrival for too long.