It's long been on my mind to sit down and examine where I have been + where I am going - especially with my hilariously amazing adventure of working for myself.
Also: I have been working as a nurse for 10 years!
How the time flies :)
For those of you who have followed me since I first started sharing in 2012, you may remember that at one point I was a hybrid of face-painting, cranial-sacral-therapist even on top of my current artist, palliative-care-nurse and hand analyst.
Honestly, I didn't know exactly what I wanted to do or be, I just knew I needed it to be more different + more creative than what the world of conventional medicine + academia appeared to offer.
Also, I should note that up to about 3 years ago I was completely in love with my work as a nurse and at that point of my life, could never imagine wanting to do anything different.
Especially not anything entrepreneurial.
The right side of the drawing are things that happened in my personal life that had some major impact on my perspective and on how I oriented myself to my career. I have high-lighted in particular to creative exploration, integrative learning opportunities and family challenges that factored into my journey. I highlight the Occupy Wall Street movement because the whole social / political / environmental climate that I have found myself in heavily informed how I have grown.
Actually, I realize that related to this but not drawn-out:
In 2011 I went through a brief phase of exploring what it would mean to be an Emergency Preparedness First Responder + started taking courses online at the Justice Institute of BC. This was largely informed by my sustainability / global warming studies wherein my conception of the future was much more focused on disastrous end-of-the-oil-age + near-zombie-apocalypse scenarios. Remember, we were on the brink of 2012 - the Mayan end of ages :)
Totally + completely.
In my growth and development I became much more acutely aware of the power of my own attention + perspective in creating my reality. So, I became much more invested in doing things that would create a reality where I was sharing and creating from joy and passion. This is a so much more fun that working on the premise that I needed to do things differently, responsively out of fear that human civilization as we know it is seriously endangered.
Neither am I denying this possible reality either.
Let's be real, there are some seriously fucked up things in the world. Heinous injustices. The Alberta Tar Sands. Generational fall-out of colonial tyranny that is ongoing.
Fortunately, I was gifted with the great honour of reconnecting with my ancestors through ceremony on Tsleil-Waututh territory (also not doodled).
This taught me how to take care of myself in a way that made it possible for me to take full responsibility of how I would be in the world. To honour the power of my attention and affect in the world, I started asking for help + guidance with the bottom line ask of ''Dear ancestors + Universe, I really don't want to spend my life contemplating how to survive in a zombie apocalypse. There has got to be a more fun, beautiful, gorgeous way for me to do the same integral work in a different perspective.'' Someone was listening because I started being shown new ways of being.
This is the video I made and submitted for the B-School competition. I still watch it every now and then to remind me of why I am venturing into unknown territory and to honour the surprising paths it takes me on. I find the video is still incredibly succinct + true to my underlying goal of facilitating open, honest conversations about death + dying because these actually help people come alive.
It is my ''WOOT! Tallyho!'' status signifying the another big shift towards my goal. The first one happened the summer before where I moved into space that allowed me to have my own tiny room/studio for whatever my little heart pleased. It was my headquarters for cranial sacral therapy, then for hand analysis.
This move was a big deal for two reasons. Firstly, it was a deeper commitment to hand analysis than I had ever dreamed of making. Secondly, it ushered in a major healing time for my relationship with my parents. I had many conversations prior to my move back home to the downstairs suite about boundaries, expectations and creating a relationship together as adults where I can be who I am and they can be who they are. Furthermore, it meant that I had their support in pursuit of my creative entrepreneurial career path. This meant the world to me, especially after not seeing eye to eye for so long!
Significant to note - I realize that at that time I thought hand analysis was going to be my main thing. I know how that it is not - I am going to continue to be some weird hybrid of seemingly disparate passions and that is okay! :)
The screen shot on my left is from May 9, 2015.
This is after formally resigning from my permanent position as a registered nurse. This was a big fat scary deal to me because it signified really leaving security in favour of exploring the unknown. I need to acknowledge for a second though: I am very fortunate to work in a field where work is plenty and I have the means to keep doing casual work while I figure things out. This is important because I don't believe in creating things from a place of survival / need - it messes with the integrity of the art.
What tickles me is that in less than 3 years I wrote 2 resignation letters - more than I have written in my whole life. Every time I get ready to write those letters I look up Kahlil Gibran's passage On Work to help ground me in my certainty of resigning and what I am looking to create. Always.
That tender + cheeky illustrated workbook is finished - part 1 of it anyway. I am looking at it as I type this :)
Hand analysis is the service / modality that I needed to zero in on what is meaningful and why we should treat / aim to live anyway. I am not sure of how everything will come together exactly but I can appreciate that everything I have learned + experienced over the past 3 years is an important part of what will come together.
Thank you so much for reading + sharing your time with me!
It means the world that you have joined me on my reflection.
For as long as I create I will continue to share.
So, be sure to watch this space as I feel I am just at the beginning of another new chapter altogether :)
Here is a sneak preview of what has been coming out of doodling:
After I read this over I realize that I have also left out huge pieces of my personal life that have unfolded in the past 10 years! This is just as well - those stories would best be woven into a memoir :) It is important for me to share and acknowledge though - I would not be who I am today were it not for those dear, amazing, incredible souls I have met. Thank you, each and every one of you, for sharing your friendship + yourself in all the worlds where we have crossed paths. For a short time or long one. You are in my heart :) It is a gorgeous life and I am so thankful for the ability to live it and share it with you :)