Last week I talked about moving from Venice Beach to San Diego. Leaving friends kind of sucks but leaving your routine can propel you forward. My incredibly insightful friend, Carrie, commented on that previous blog, "When the routine is stripped away, seeing how you want to spend your time can be really telling." And this totally hit the nail on the head for me. When you no longer know what you're supposed to be doing, what is it that you choose to do? I chose to fill in a sketchbook with drawings I hated.
One day, between working and scouring the internet for new treasures to fill my new home, I fell down that rabbit hole that is Tumblr. I stumbled upon something called the Sketchbook Project from the Brooklyn Art Library. At the time I wasn't being entirely social. I had connected with a few of my old friends but things were a little different. Gone were the days where I could randomly get in touch with people and make spur of the moment plans. Now was an age of setting up "dates" weeks in advance. I think that has something to do with being an adult...at least that's my latest theory. So instead of being social on a whim I realized that I needed a project, and the Sketchbook Project was the perfect one.
It had been a really long time since I had drawn...years in fact. But I faced these empty pages with excitement...which didn't last very long. I had chosen to replicate drawings of plants so that I could get used to having a pencil in my hand to do more than just jot notes on a post-it. Just for fun I chose only plants that either were poisonous or hallucinogenic. Into the first drawing I realized...oh man, this is going to suck. And I was so right. I hated the majority of filling that sketchbook. I was critical of every single plant I drew. I intensely procrastinated. I cursed the pencil I was using, my hand using the pencil, the number of pages I had to fill, my unimaginative imagination, the looming deadline, the Brooklyn Art Library for enticing me to fill this damn thing in the first place. But I'm the type of person that once I start, I refuse to stop.
Thank god for that! About a week after I finished that cursed book, my hand was itching to get back at it. I was shocked! After trudging through that project, whining about it, and fighting it with everything I had, I was sure that I would never want to look at another blank page again. Instead all I wanted to do was to get better. To solve the problems I faced. And I have Ira Glass to thank for that. His words pushed me right onto the path I had been looking for for a very long time. Now it's time you listen to them. Go! Click on this link right now!
So I can't be alone in doing something I hated which later lead me to doing something I love...can I? Have you had a moment where you were kicking and screaming but after the fact you had a whole new level of gratefulness you never expected?