First of all I want to thank all of you who left such thoughtful and encouraging comments these past few weeks. You truly helped me to wade through these muddy waters and I am so grateful for this supportive online community.
And while I am still uncertain where Molly fits in the world …I am taking steps to finding myself again. My typical Method of Operation is to remain stoic during the crisis and then run away when it is passed. Since I must remain in town to complete my teaching duties, I have chosen to do a bit of ‘virtual’ escaping.
So to that end, I thought I might share some of the pursuits that I have undertaken in order to develop a bit of fun in my life again.
I have enrolled in two online classes:
- Great Photos with Any Camera offered by Elisha Snow through Big Picture Classes and Alchemy: The Art and Craft of Writing offered by Jenna McGuiggan of The Word Cellar. It is my hope that both of these classes will help me to hone some practical skills so that I can truly develop these personal interests into full fledged passions. While school continues to keep me busy this last quarter of the year, I know that it is important to do something for me and both of these classes will aid me this summer when…
- I hope to take a third online class, Unravelling by Susannah Conway. My sister-in-law took this class a while ago and absolutely loved it. I shall take her advice and do this for myself as well.
I also plan to finally learn to let go of perfectionism – at least when it comes to doing activities that I enjoy like photography, writing, scrapbooking, and (now) quilting and (hopefully) mixed media art. I need to drop the constant comparison of my efforts to those of professionals – and give myself a break. I need to realize that it is acceptable to do these things because I want to – not because there is a looming deadline that I must meet. I have so many projects that are in various stages of completion – and many others than I have not yet begun. What am I waiting for?
But the true passion of my life – what pushes me to develop these other skills – is that I will travel. And, God willing, I will travel to Paris, France this summer for a two week extended stay at this lovely apartment in the heart of Monmartre – my favorite Parisian neighborhood.
I dream of walking along the Seine, capturing the emotion of the scene with photographs and writing intimate thoughts in my journal. I long to visit the Musee d’Orsay for an extended period of time – perhaps completing the research that I think I need in order to start writing the novel that I envisioned eighteen months ago. I imagine myself visiting the small grocery each morning – finding just the right baguette, small wedge of brie, and piece of fruit, and setting off in search of the perfect park in which to enjoy this simple lunch, perhaps with a glass of Bordeaux, and watch the European people saunter through their day. I may even be brave enough to try to use my rusty French once again.
For two weeks I hope to escape my life, for just a short while, and in the process to discover who I have become. I want to pretend to be a writer, living in the country that inspired so many great authors, and slow down enough to enjoy the simplicity of life once again. To that end I have a book waiting for me at the library, Literary Cafes of Paris, which I plan to absorb over the next few days. I have already poured over the book, The Impressionists’ Paris and have mentally taken each of the three walking tours. I have researched Rue Mouffetard, an open air market that I have wanted to visit since I was in high school, in the book Markets of Paris, and have even discovered a few others to add to the list.
I feel as though these past few weeks have been the pupal stage of my butterfly existence. I have been a cocooned puddle of goo. But I feel my wings developing and I know that over time I will indeed emerge transformed into the Molly that I am meant to be.