I'm participating in an online workshop with several scrapbooking friends. We're using the book "The Artist's Way: a spiritual path to greater creativity" by Julia Cameron. In Chapter One, we were challenged to write about our creative champions - those people in our past and present who cultivated our talents, cheered us on in our creative pursuits, believed in us even when we didn't believe ourselves, etc. It's easy for me to think of people who've championed me over the years. The first four who came to mind...
My sister is one. She has always, always encouraged me to write. When I visited her recently, she championed me at the scrapbook store. The owner started talking about techniques, and I was listening patiently and attentively, when Bobbie interrupted with, "Oh. Please. You're talking to the pro here. She can teach YOU techniques." I was embarrassed, especially when she went on and on about it. Then at the hair salon, the lady who COMPLETELY BUTCHERED MY HAIR BUT I DIGRESS said, "Stacy, your sister is so pretty. Tell her that she doesn't need to hide behind long hair and to keep it short." Now see, I've heard that all my life - that my sister is SO PRETTY. And she is. But this time, Bobbie overheard it, and interjected with, "Stacy is SO TALENTED. She can do everything. She can sing, she takes such good photographs that ALL her friends make her do their family portraits, she writes, she makes amazing scrapbooks that people pay big bucks for...." and she went on. Again, I was embarrassed and tried to discount it all. But how I love her for championing me when I won't champion myself.
My friend Becky has always championed my writing. She has a file of newsletter columns I wrote in the 90s. *I* didn't even keep copies of those! But Becky has them, and refers to certain ones from time to time. She still reads them. That amazes me. Whenever I think that my writing could never appeal to anyone, I think of Becky. And that refocuses me everytime. She sometimes asks if I'm submitting things for publication, and when I say "no", she curls her lip at me and gives me the hairy eyeball. lol!
My friend Bob. Bob champions me by revealing truths to me about myself. Bob is never afraid to speak the truth, even when it's ugly, even when it's hard. But at the same time, Bob constantly affirms me by telling me that I'm worthy, beautiful, fun AND funny, talented, giving, and loved. Bob challenges me to be better in every aspect of my life - creatively, spiritually, physically and emotionally. I'm actually sad for the people in this world who don't have Bobs in their lives!
And finally, Darren. No woman on earth has ever had a husband who is so accomodating, so in touch, so totally supportive of her creative pursuits. He constantly urges me to blog. And every SINGLE time I've threatened to delete an entry that I felt was too honest, too personal, too whatever, he's pursuaded me to keep it. Because after all, this blog is for me and mine. Someday, I'll be glad it's all here - the good, the bad, and the ugly. Darren champions me consistently - by nurturing me, by believing in me, by bragging on me, by being interested in what's interesing me. Whether it's painting a wall at church, or writing quotes around all the window frames in my office, or glueing rope to the walls in the boys' room, or rearranging the family room furniture AGAIN, or painting a mural on the playhouse, or scrapping until the wee hours of the morning, or writing a play for VBS... whatever it is I'm doing, Darren is my biggest champion.
Who are your champions?