I used to watch Sesame Street as a kid, and for the next five decades, I have remembered word for word, Ernie singing about the letter “D”. I am unsure as to why some things stick in our heads longer than others do, but this; and the Peter’s Two In One advertisement are two things that have; but I digress…today we are talking about the a-z of wishes – in particular “D – dee dee dee dee is such a very fine letter…..”!
Desire is nothing without determination.
Napoleon Hill – the writer of “Think and Grow Rich”, wrote that the starting point for everything anyone has ever achieved is DESIRE.
Wanting to do something so badly that it makes your heart ache will not make it happen – there must also be a strong determination to take action.
Sometimes desire is like that craving for ice cream you get at midnight watching chick flicks when the rest of the house is asleep and quiet. Sometimes it is more like an untapped yearning for something of which you are not sure. It can be frustrating, frightening but if harnessed can also be very fruitful as we know.
A Divided Heart: Art and Motherhood – Rachel Power (ISBN: 9781742035017)
Back in 2008, I bought a book (one of many) and it has become a favourite for me and to gift to my creative and mostly musical friends! It stuck! However, after reading many posts on various groups and websites about mums struggling hard with juggling their desire to be ‘a great mum’ (or even just a good one) and their determination to create a business that satisfies another of their passions, not wanting to ditch on either.
It occurred to me recently, that not only my musical friends would appreciate the wisdom in this book. While the stories are all of artists, writers, dancers, musicians and other creative types, aren’t WE as entrepreneurs ‘creatives’ too?
When I first bought this book in 2008, I wrote a review on another MUCH older blog – now defunct. Some of that review appears below, with some minor edits.
I quickly read the back cover and initially thought, “Oh great – some light reading for the train”. A collection of conversations with the artist mothers of Australia, writers, artists, dancers, songwriters, and filmmakers. Seemed a light and simple enough read that I wouldn’t be too upset getting off the train at Flinders Street and having to stuff it in my bag.
I was wrong. I would have happily traveled round and round the loop on that first day – just to read more.
There is nothing lightweight about this book. By page two of the introduction, I was a woman (and a mother) dangerously close to tears as I read, and re-read the words that had been stripped from my soul and placed on these pages by some other woman and mother. I’d never before encountered anyone brave enough to verbalise or write about childbirth and motherhood in this way.
“Like a magnet, simultaneously repelled and attracted, to be a mother is to be mired in contradiction. We can love our children while resenting their impact on our lives; our bodies sing out for theirs when we are away from them, yet our minds can strain away in boredom and frustration when they are near. Children are not a job you can leave, or a country you can return from. No one can guarantee you a child who matches your imaginings. You will get what you’re given – and there is no turning back.”
I’ve struggled too, with the ideas of being a creative woman without something in my life giving way. I related to this book from the very first page. As I’ve delved more into the entrepreneurial side of life, I find myself returning to the chapters in this book for inspiration, vindication, and justification of my many feelings of frustration, failure and fatigue.
If you’re a creative woman (and aren’t we all), I urge you to find a copy of this book and read it. Alone, where you can weep, as I did, when you come to the realisation that you are not alone – that others are feeling what you feel. When you finally appreciate that’ you are not a failure as a mother, and that there is hope for your creative life amongst it all.
You have desire. You have determination. Now go out there and get it DONE.
Until next time…