I sit in my office today among a brazen display of color. I’ve always preferred a livelier palette of reds, turquoise, emerald and copper all splashed upon velvet, chenille and pretty much anything that makes me want to touch it for at least ten minutes and have a proper daydream before getting back to work.
My romance with bright color started when I was two, I like to think. I have memories then of a wall I use to face while taking a nap in a church basement which happened to be a daycare. It was cinderblock, painted pale blue, and it used to make me feel very, very sad. In fact, some of my most liberating healing work as an adult has been to go back to that wall in my own imagination and adorn it with lush green, wildflowers, rainbows, and dazzling starry skies.
I like colors and textures that make me explode into cosmic confetti, so you know, I struggle with adding pale blue to my life’s palette.
This has consistently been me: whenever the dull feelings start to roll in like a fog, I run to the flower shop and get the reddest of red tulips and throw a party for myself at the table. I diffuse some kind of citrusy essential oil. I play a sweeping soundtrack. I rearrange furniture. I paint the cinderblock wall.
And therein lies my frightening problem with this season:
those things don’t work the same for me anymore.
It’s like they’ve lost their seductive powers. It may be that I’m craving more of what’s real and what’s here without trying to accelerate through the mist or dazzle the hell out of it with my bright soul colors.
I’m keenly aware that I’m becoming a new sort of human—an upgraded version—and it’s been altogether uncomfortable, to say the least. Especially right now, with so many people worshipping at the Church of Goal-Setting. This is like holy week for those that want to make a change, proclaim their big why, set their course to happy.
(Oh, the sweet drug of happy!)
And yet, we know somewhere deep within that it won’t be the ten pounds, the organized closet, the white sale, the parting with caffeine, the beachside villa, or the abolished debt that will give us what we really want, which is soul-tingling-hallelujah wholeness.
That’s the resolution our souls are always spiraling towards. No matter what the season or moon or blog post says.
But oh my God, wholeness is hard! Sometimes, really hard. It’s slowing down enough to allow the fog. Shrugging your shoulders instead of having solutions. Listening to the soul’s whisper (or roar) more often than the best-selling author or expert. Spending less time and money on a mentor and more of both on a personal retreat.
It’s staring into the uncomfortable pale blue and becoming a new person.
Like Picasso did.
My brilliant friend Julie owns an art studio here in Denver and my kiddos attended a session there yesterday. Guess what they came home with?
Their own personal portraits, inspired by Picasso’s blue period.
When I first saw their art, the faces made me wince. I wanted to instantly lighten them up. Maybe put them in a bright purple frame with a 4 inch polka dot mat? Of course later as I got home and looked into them, I felt so much healing and a mysterious sort of beauty that inspired this entire post.
Whatever colors your own season is bringing you, we’re all doing our best to make peace with dense emotions and the mundane reality of life. Here are a few diamonds of truth I’m processing in my own journey that may help you along yours:
Embrace the Blue.
Not only am I not yet comfortable with the heavier vibrations of me, my friends and family aren’t used to seeing me wrapped in existential blue. It’s weird when I go out and excitingly get asked: “so how was your CHRISTMAS??” and feel totally Scroogey in my response. Especially as a mom, there’s pressure to cheer up and create happy around the house during this long (did I mention LONG?) winter break.
But what I’m finding is that there’s so much beauty in the expression of what’s real – so much texture and emotion. If you study the art that came from Picasso’s Blue Period, you’ll find a supernatural sort of grace that flowed from his depths of emotion to the canvas. He allowed his soul to experience the reality of his life. I think there’s magic in that. When we’re true to the rhythm of the moment – to our soul’s necessary, functional evolutionary process – we make art. We shift things for an easier time later.
Mastery isn’t about feeling good. It’s about range.
I am a VIP in Club Sparkle. At least, if one existed I would be, or maybe even the club owner. Even as I write this, there are tiny jewels spread everywhere around my desk. Amethyst and labradorite sit next to my laptop and sing to me while I work. I love pretty things! I love feeling good! We all do, and that’s why we subconsciously seek more and more ways to not have to feel sadness. Just this morning, I counted thirty-five emails in my inbox with subject lines like “8 ways to feel more happy” and “Feel warm and fabulous in the New Year”!
And yet, what I’m uncovering in this process is that there is a much more powerful medicine than feeling good. Pleasure has its place and its rightful prescription, but emotions, like colors, need complimentary partners in order to make beauty. That’s what I mean by range, and that’s what makes our souls go wild. The truly crazy part? I’m learning to not just ignore my own blue feelings but to enjoy them and let them teach me some amazing things. What’s on the other side of this, I can’t say. But I do know that some of Picasso’s most joyful, vibrant works came just after his Blue Period.
Create your own beat. Then find your own moves to it.
I have a few friends who are signing off Facebook for the year to practice more presence in their life. I know another woman who is taking a whole year off to drive around the continent to wild and exotic places with her ex-husband and two boys to showcase her own journey in bringing love to the world.
These things make my eccentric, gypsy soul very excited!
When I tune in to the energy of this year, there’s a call from all of our higher selves for more self-leadership, which to me, means a radical acceptance of my own personal rhythms without any judgment of what that may look like. I might be Magic Carpet Lady one day, and Dragon Lady the next, warrior-with-sword in one moment, and oversensitive hermit in another. Whatever it is, however that rhythm feels, I must honor it, and get better and better at giving myself what I need. This act of self-nurturing is a powerful act of love not just for ourselves, but for our whole planet as it heals old patterns of avoiding pain and externalizing its wounds.
Deep stuff, I know. But such is the soul life!
I hope this missive offers you some wisdom, or some magical assurance to those of you in your own blue period. And, since there is always a need for shiny inspiration and celestial magic carpet rides, I’d like to recommend both!
First: Katie Hess’s new book, Flowerevolution: Blooming into Your Full Potential with the Magic of Flowers. Oh my goodness, the earth candy in here! My inner fairy queen is in love with this collab she did with photographer Louie Schwartzberg. My favorite new book for discovery!
Secondly: You know that whole ‘range’ thing? It’s made magic carpet riding with me that much more fantastic. Deep. High. Far out. Wherever your soul wants to take you, I guide you into your magic in these 30 minute intuitive adventures. Book yours here.
See you soon,