Unexpectedly creative

A self that goes on changing is a self that goes on living.
~ Virginia Woolf 

I tend to think of myself as someone who does not change. And yet, looking back, I have certainly changed over time. 

It’s a constant reminder that who I am now, where I am now, is only temporary as well. I will not be the same person in the future as I am now. I actually enjoy trying to project myself into my as-yet-unknown future, although admittedly my conclusions are … usually not correct. 

I would not have predicted that I would do and enjoy something new and creative this past weekend. That is not who I have been, nor is it who I aspire to be. I have never claimed to be creative – or artistic, a term that often overlaps (at least in my mind) with creativity. I have made it a self-deprecating joke to say that I don’t have a creative bone in my body, and I leave the creating to the true artists. 

And yet, I did something creative this weekend. 
And I enjoyed it. 

I actually painted for the first time since… well, since art class, maybe, in middle school? I think? Let’s just say that art classes were not on my schedule from there on out. See above – not creative! 

But a coworker emailed about a paint-your-pet-and-sip event at a local winery, and three of us joined her to, well, paint our pets. And sip wine. For three hours on a Sunday afternoon. 

Let’s pause here, because this is not something I would typically be doing on a Sunday afternoon. I usually work through the weekend unless I am on vacation or taking a rare break. And painting would not have been my first choice for an alternative! 

But I went. I enjoyed it. And, dare I say, I was pretty proud of my creation. I’m not going to share it here – come on, really? did you honestly expect that? But it’s not hideous. 

It was an immersive activity, one that did not require that I have my face in front of a screen for hours on end. I really couldn’t think much beyond what color to mix, how to make it look a bit more realistic, and whether I was being true to the image I was working from. That concentration on something other – that immersion in something new and different – let my mind truly relax. I slept like a baby Sunday night (although the wine may have had something to do with that, too). 

It was a reminder to me that stepping outside my comfort zone isn’t always a bad thing. And it doesn’t always have to be permanent, or a really fraught decision. Sometimes, you can just do something fun. Just because. 

So I guess I’ll go on changing in ways expected and not. It’s such an adventure to see what lies ahead… as yet unknowns unfolding in ways I can’t anticipate. 

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