Monday, July 2, 2012

look out, world!

Look out, world! Another creative spirit just found her wings!

On Friday, my SIL packed up her belongings, slammed the door on her way out, and left her deadening job once and for all.

On Saturday...we celebrated her retirement.

Friends and family from far and wide gathered to congratulate her on a job well done. To ease her out of the familiar rut that led her to work and back every day. To encourage her to make the most of her free time now that she has it. Time for golf, tennis, and art.

It was a typical retirement party with good food, congratulatory cards and gifts, and good company. 

But what made it special was the fact that it marked the liberation of a great artistic spirit. The freeing of a captive soul. The unleashing of a great untapped talent...because my SIL is an artist.

Yes, this is one of her watercolors!

She paints...or yearns to paint...whenever she can make the time and summon the energy for it. Until now, unfortunately, that hardly ever happened, given the demands of her career and her dedication to it.

Sad, isn't it, that creative energy and artistic longing must cower, aching and throbbing out of sight, while we squander our energy and passion on careers that exhaust us and frustrate us and eat us alive? Sad, isn't it, that we have to wait until we retire before we begin to pursue our dreams? And then we feel guilty about it??

In order to cling to our dreams, I believe that we need all the help we can get . So, Toni, this is for you, as you "begin again":

"Inside you there's an artist you don't know about...
Say yes quickly if you know,
if you've known it from before the beginning of the universe."

"Every child is an artist.
The problem is how to remain an artist
once he grows up."
--Pablo Picasso--

"We are traditionally rather proud of ourselves
for having slipped creative work in there
between the domestic chores and obligations.
I'm not sure we deserve such big A-pluses for that."
--Toni Morrison--

"It is the soul's duty
to be loyal to its own desires.
It must abandon itself to its master passion."
--Rebecca West--

"So you see,
imagination needs moodling--
long, inefficient, happy idling, dawdling, and puttering."
--Brenda Ueland--

--Joseph Campbell--

Happy Retirement!
Next week I'll share with you what's next on my agenda of new things to try.


  1. Congratulations on her retirement...may she enjoy it as much as I do mine.

  2. Your post just made me even more excited for my retirement next year. I have such a long list of things I want to do.
    Happy 4th.