GETTING MORE SPACE: In My Head, and In My Heart

Another solution for my final arrangements….

Part of my tagline, “Eternal student of life”, is something I don’t take lightly. It’s true.

Years ago, I asked a friend, an EMT, what the heart of their work was. Without hesitation, they replied, “People call us on the worst day of their lives.” Those words broke–and lifted!–my heart. (Thank you, Ann!!)

When I became a hospice volunteer in 2009, I dreaded when people asked what I was up to. I’d share that news. The response was usually along the lines of, “Oh, I could never do that, you are amazing” or “Oh, you must be wonderful at that!” I felt embarrassed. I shared that with my daughter (an old soul, and already working in eldercare). Why was I embarrassed, she asked.  I said, I’m intrigued with this work because I am constantly learning, gaining insights, and finding the power being present instead of focusing on “fixing”. And I enjoy that.

My daughter replied, “So….you should volunteer to do something you hate?)

Um. OH! Got it! (Thank you, Robin!)

The past few days I’ve been moving stuff from my storage unit to an add-on room in my studio. It isn’t much more $$, I’ll have 24/7 access to my supplies, and it will be literally two feet away, instead of across town.

And every carload I bring to the new space makes me realize how much stuff I have, and how much I ‘should’ move on.

I ran into a fellow artist/creative in my building, who used to work there until Covid-19. I expressed dismay they’d lost their job, and they said no, it’s wonderful because two BIG creative income streams filled the gap. I told them I was happy for them, and said, “At least you don’t have to deal with all of us folks who have way too much stuff!”

Their response was another terrific one-liner. I can’t remember the exact words they used but, it was something like, “People come to us when their lives are up-ended in some way.”

Boom! Mic drop.

I could feel my thoughts, and my heart, shift to a better place. I thanked them for their powerful words, went on my way. (Thank you, Polly!)

Sometimes, all it takes is a handful of words to get to our better selves.

And in my defense, it’s not just me who has a lot of stuff. See this vintage article I wrote for The Crafts Report (now Handmade Business) magazine back in the day:  Approaching Normal (But Never Quite Getting There

 

Author: Luann Udell

I find it just as important to write about my art as to make it. I am fascinated by stories. You can tell when people are speaking their truth--their eyes light up, their voices become strong, their entire body posture becomes powerful and upright. I love it when people get to this place in their work, their relationships, their art. As I work from this powerful place in MY heart, I share this process with others--so they have a strong place to stand, too. Because the world needs our beautiful art. All of it we can make, as fast as we can! Whether it's a bowl, a painting, a song, a garden, a story, if it makes our world a better place, we need to do everything in our power to get it out there.

4 thoughts on “GETTING MORE SPACE: In My Head, and In My Heart”

  1. I am soon to be 63 and on my 28th address. I have been working on reducing my stuff for decades, and the moves help. I look at all my jewelry making supplies (I have been collecting beads for 50 years) and although I will never ever use all of them but I might just need that particular color and shape. Some things are more difficult than others to let go of. I am still donating to Salvation Army and Good Will if I do not know anyone who can use the overflow of all my other stuff. It is a never ending battle. I hope you find people who will appreciate your many gifts.

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    1. You are spot-on, moving is a big up-ending life event. When we moved to California from New Hampshire 7 years ago, we moved on about 3/4 of our house possessions, and about 2/3 of my studio. What I’ve learned is however much space we have, I tend to fill it. But I’m also getting better at recognizing when it’s time to move something on, unfortunately, in Santa Rosa California, where we live now, there are so many nonprofit works that can accept all kinds of donations. I find that when I know something is going to a good home, two people whose lives will be happier for the donations I make, it’s easier to get clear about what has to go and what can stay. I’m so glad you shared your own experience here today, too. Thank you so much!

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    1. Rosalie, you are too kind! I am old, I know I have a soul somewhere, wise? Sometimes! Mostly, I realize that framing hard times and tough situations as ” learning experiences” sometimes helps me float through them more easily. And when I share that with others, and they either get insights, knowledge, or just a good laugh, makes it all worthwhile. Thank you for taking the time to share your kind thoughts today.

      Like

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