There is a certain high one gets when they have finished a project: a feeling of elation, of being on top of the world. Proud, excited and nervous all at once as one gets ready to release it to the world. Usually this is followed immediately by feelings of vulnerability, empty nest syndrome and anxious cries to ones self of “What do I do next? Aghhhhhh!”
The harvest after the growth is a wonderful metaphor. Indeed, especially since I'm a gardener. When I pick my fruits I'm always so excited. My being smiles with the knowledge that I grew something from seed to plant; that I nurtured it gently into fruition. As a gardener, I get excited knowing that these are the fruits of my labor. Once harvested, I go home with my vegetables and fruits, proud and eager to taste my harvest.
Yes that's it. To taste the harvest and savor it, that is what is best about the harvest.
But how does one savor the creative fruits of what they have released to the world? The projects so furiously worked on, nurtured, labored over in order for them to come into being? Labored over.
(Bear with me as flit from tangent to tangent and I ponder these metaphors for this is the stuff of creativity after all).
The picture of myself in labor comes to mind: initially calm breathing, focused and then in the last minutes of pushing out my child into the world there is intensity, pain, melded with determination and followed by relief. The relief of one part being over but knowing that it's just the beginning. The beginning of something new: a new stage in Life. Afterward there is a strange feeling as that little being growing inside is no longer there but now outside sharing their uniqueness with others.
There is nothing like that feeling of growing a small being inside of you. But once they are born they take on a life of their own.
A life of their own: Yes this is what I am wishing for my harvest. Planting the seeds of creativity, growing them, nurturing them and allowing them to have a life of their own. I wish for more seeds to be planted not just in my mind or my life but also in the lives of others.
The harvest is never ending, it is plentiful.
My sons grow, transform, all the while planting their own seeds of creativity and influence. Much the way my tomato plants literally plant their own seeds with no help from me. I only plant the original seed. What comes of it is influenced by so many other factors.
Initially my creative harvest appears to be a one time, “I have nurtured this into fruition and now share my bounty.” If I view it through the harvest metaphor I begin to see it differently. It is not a one-time harvest, but a continual planting of seeds. Ideas released and nurtured by those who care to pick them up and plant them. From this perspective I can savor the harvest a little longer knowing that there are endless possibilities to be harvested by others once I have shared my harvest of creative endeavors.
I like this. This feels so much better to me and much less final. And while there still may be an urge to run off and begin creating something new right away, I can relax a little knowing that things are still being created from my seeds of creativity and from others. And the cross-pollination will be amazing!
You can find Petrea in the following places:
Websites: Offbeat Family & ArtTherapist.ca
Twitter: @offbeatfamily & @drawingselfout