Saturday, 4 May 2013

Build your life around what you love!

'Building your life around what you love is something you’ll never regret' says Marie Forleo on the Positively Positive blog and she goes on to expand, 'It’s your passion for what you do that will give you the drive, commitment, and energy necessary to create any amount of success and fulfilment you desire, and you’ll have an extraordinary time while you do it.' (see link for reference)  This is a great article and worth a read and it really got me thinking about what I am doing right at this moment in my life, in my lead up to turning forty.

Looking back over some of my older posts I remembered writing about my daughter and her star-fish hairstyle. Boy it's been a crazy journey since then, a journey which has changed me in so many ways and made me realise how much I really judged people by their appearance. The battle with school continued as she found many more ways to rebel against the expected dress code. I'm talking hair in as many shades of red as can be dyed, hair shaved and shaped, piercings in the side of the nose, the inside of the nose, the lip and a stretcher in the ear. Not just a little stretcher either, but a giant, plate sized stretcher, not something that is easily missed. The complaints from other parents, the looks from passers-by, because she really was starting to look, how do i say it, 'different!'

Calls from school, an unhappy daughter, family dysfunction, you name it, it was all going on. Then finally, I had enough of the calls from teachers to come and discuss the appearance issues once again and I decided it was time to pull the plug. 'You're just going to keep challenging the school with your appearance because you don't want to be there, aren't you?' I asked and the answer was a resounding 'yes'. This was going to require some big changes of my own life, too. She was going to need me home more. It was time to talk about going part time ... which would also free up a couple of days for me to concentrate on my writing. It was time to give her space to do what she was being called to do, and it was going to go against every brain cell inside my skull that was lecturing 'she should finish school in the traditional manner'. Once I let go of those little self-righteous voices, suddenly the tides of circumstance appeared to have been released. There were a few leads and following these up led to my daughter being offered a place in a certificate of visual arts at the local TAFE college.

On the first day there, I watched her reaction, the expression in her eyes behind the mask of make-up and the strands of rainbow coloured extensions. It was like a fire had suddenly entered her soul. From the moment we walked past the red-brick walls, past the sculptures in the middle of the buildings and into the classrooms, where student desks were set up with easels and sketches and art materials, I knew beyond doubt that my daughter was where she was meant to be . As I signed the papers I felt the excitement emanating from her and as I drove away, leaving her happily ensconced in her new class I was actually crying tears of happiness. I felt I had been part of something momentous, part of something so much bigger than me. Watching and feeling my daughter being freed to follow her passion. Now that is a moment to treasure.