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Month: May 2013

Creativity

Creativity

 

I am a creative person. I can’t remember a time that I wasn’t. I’m grateful for the multiple ways I can express my creativity. Writing, party planning, jewelry making, decorating, crocheting…I am content when I’m creating something with my hands.

For example, I was up until 11:30 last night writing my fictional novel (one of two books in my head at the moment). The characters live in my head and sometimes I will have an idea about what they should be saying or doing at the most inopportune moments, like when I’m tired.  The scenario usually goes like this:

Me: I’m sleepy.

My Creative Heart: But what about that idea you had for the main character?

Me: All I want to do is just take a shower and go to bed.

My Creative Heart: Just write a few lines. Besides if you don’t, you’ll be wide awake thinking about it.

Me: (Checking the time) Okay, it’s 8:00pm. I’ll write until 9, but then I’m going to bed.

My Creative Heart: (Jumping for joy) Woo hoo!!

Me: (4 hours later…) Okay, I need to figure out how to tie in these two scenes…(Looks up at the clock) Jeezy peezy! It’s after midnight!!! I should be in bed by now.

My Creative Heart: Well I was going to tell you the time, but you looked so happy.

When I’m in a creative zone I’m happy. I take that back. I’m not just happy; I’m in an everlasting euphoric state of bliss.  When I’m being creative, no matter the form, I lose track of time, I ignore fatigue and at some point common sense is no longer present. It usually takes an external distraction to stop me, like the phone ringing or my kids.

The physical manifestation of my creativity is like a piece of me that I’m willing to share with the world. It takes courage to present a part of you and not worry about the criticism it might face. I admire musicians, vocalists and actors. Their creativity is judged and scrutinized on a daily basis. But what most people don’t know about truly creative people is we will be creative even if the only person that gets to enjoy it is ourselves. I nurture my creative heart because I want it to grow and develop. I want to share it with my children. Some of it has rubbed off on them already. My oldest loves to draw and my youngest loves to sing and dance. And wouldn’t you know it; both of them love to write.

What have you done today to nurture your creative heart?

Post-Event Withdrawal

Post-Event Withdrawal

I spent the last couple of months planning a division annual meeting for IAAP (International Association of Administrative Professionals). As one of the co-chairs for the annual meeting, it was my responsibility to attend meetings to coordinate the activities and tasks for thirteen different committee chairs and representatives. The meetings started with a frequency of once a month. Those meetings were relatively easy to deal with. An update here, a question there. No big deal. But then the meetings switched to every two weeks and the information that my co-chair and I should have received wasn’t forthcoming from the appropriate parties (How’s that for a politically correct statement?). When we started meeting every week, I became a very cranky version of myself. I questioned my sanity and intelligence for taking on the responsibility in the first place. I mean really, who was I trying to impress? I’ll tell you who. Myself. But was it nice to hear from the attendees that we did a great job? Absolutely. When a room full of seasoned, experienced, Alpha female administrative professionals give you a compliment, it is nothing to sneeze at. Administrative professionals are some of the hardest people to please. I love them dearly, but if there is something wrong, if there’s a typo, if a waiter took too long to bring the soup they will let you know about it…immediately. It’s not that we look for mistakes, we are just quick to find them and 99.9% of the time we can offer a solution to fix it.

Planning a meeting of this size for an elite group of 120 women was a challenge and an honor. Having such a huge responsibility tested me in ways I thought only my husband and children could. I had to use technical as well as soft skills to be the best co-chair possible. Even though the planning got rough at some points and feathers of pride got ruffled, I would do it all over again. When I went back to work today, I could not believe that all the planning was over. I missed my cue sheets and conference timelines. I missed the banquet event orders and the room layouts. I missed providing solutions to problems. I didn’t look at any of the meeting materials today instead I stacked them in a corner on my desk.  I tried to think about the many tasks to be completed at work. And then I received an email from the Registration Committee Chair….a list of all the attendees. I fought the urge to send out the survey right then and there. But I’ll give you two guesses what I’ll be doing first thing in the morning and the first guess doesn’t count…

The Ugly Side of Celebrating of Motherhood

The Ugly Side of Celebrating of Motherhood

Yesterday was Mother’s Day and women all over the country received gifts, cards and flowers from their children. Adult children made reservations for spa treatments and brunch at their mother’s favorite restaurants. It’s the one day out of the year when Mom’s can put their feet up and take a break.

But somewhere, there were women who have been battling infertility and yesterday was yet another reminder that they do not have a child to call their own. The weeks leading up to yesterday were not joyous or filled with anticipation. It was heartbreaking and depressing. I can speak about that from personal experience because I too dealt with infertility. I realize that I’m one of the lucky ones who was able to conceive on the first try with IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) but I also know the disappointment of two failed IUI’s (Intrauterine insemination). I know how it feels to buy yet another baby shower gift and fighting the urge to pass judgement on the conditions in which a child was conceived and the relationship the parents have. I’m not a jealous woman but motherhood was something that I coveted more than anything. I know what it’s like to have well-meaning members of the church tell you to just have faith the size of a mustard seed. Trust me, when a woman is going to through infertility, she has a relationship with God that you can’t even begin to comprehend. I know that without a shadow of a doubt that I had I listened to “well meaning” family and friends and not to the whispering of God, I would probably still be childless. As I explained to someone prior to starting treatments, if God can create the sun, moon and stars surely creating a doctor with specialty in infertility is within of His realm of expertise.

I did not write this to chastise those who are insensitive to or don’t have a clue about infertility. However, if you have a friend who is dealing with infertility, there are some things you just do not say. I wrote this post as voice of understanding and compassion and support to women who are still dealing with it. I have friends who have also suffered with infertility and were able to conceive, some that are still battling and some that have given up hope. I’ve watched them tirelessly raise other people’s children and work in professions where they can influence young minds. My hope is that yesterday was a beautiful day for them. I pray that they were treated like the beautiful queens that they are and they were surrounded with love and admiration.

Every Mother’s Day I’m thankful to Shady Grove Fertility Clinic in Rockville, MD, specifically Dr. Robert Stillman, who assisted me through my infertility journey. Dr. Stillman and his staff consoled me when I was at my absolute worse and laughed along with me when I used humor to diffuse hurt, pain and disappointment. I believe modern medicine does not trump God. I believe God leads you to where you need to go so that He can answer your prayer.