happy halloween...

...from frida and her biker hubby


whimsical women #4

i'd like to apologize for the delay in this post...life has gotten in the way. but i am delighted to introduce you to october's whimsical woman:  kerri arista! i am committed to promoting all types of artists and this month we will meet an artist who has a talent i could only dream of possessing:  a gorgeous singing voice. (yes, i finally gave up my dream of joining the dixie chicks.) so without further ado...welcome kerri!

as i leave behind my old blog, the year of discovery, i'll ask for one thing you've discovered in the last year…

I’ve discovered, or I guess I should say rediscovered, that if I plant myself in a chair and put a guitar in my hands, I can write a song whether I’m “in the mood” or not. It may not be great, but I can create something that wasn’t there before. And if I just do that regularly, eventually, I’m able to find creations worthy of keeping, and sharing. I think that is true with any creative endeavor. Just do it. Often.

how do you bring fun into your life…anything you do regularly that makes you feel like a kid again?

I love going to the movies. More than just about anything I can think of. I have always loved going, as did my mom. I go by myself a lot, which I sometimes even prefer, because then I can pick any movie I want!

how do you maintain balance in your life (IF you do), between creative endeavors and the other parts of your life that need attention?

Well, I have sorta learned to be okay with NOT having balance at times. When moments- (or however long it lasts!) of creative inspiration strike, I try to let that take priority over just about everything else. Then I apologize later. :)

what does community mean to you? describe a community of which you're a part

People sometimes laugh when I say I’m introverted, (because they are confused on the meaning!) but I am! So I’m not really involved in many “group” or “community’ things. I have to say, I am so thankful to the blogging community out there! It was only about 6 months ago I started leaving comments on blogs that I visit. I use to be shy about commenting. But once I started getting comments from others on my own blog that were so meaningful to me, I realized it’s that back and forth that makes blogging so much fun. So now I comment- I want those bloggers to know I’m listening! And I want to be a part of the conversation.

what is the BEST costume you've ever worn?

Nothing comes to mind at all on this one. However, my brother who is in his mid-40s called me the other day to tell me he got the banana costume from Jamba Juice to wear for Halloween. We laughed and laughed. We hung up the phone, and within 5 minutes, he called me back to tell me he had just gotten his hands on the strawberry costume for me. So this year might be a big one for me!

if you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? and who would you take with you?

I’ve been wanting to go visit Europe- specifically Italy for years. Eventually, I will. My husband and our best friends, Allyson and Kevin are going with me.

tell us something about yourself that only a few people know…

Well, my sister once told me that if I ever died in a tornado she wouldn’t feel sad because she’d know I had died happy. And that’s probably true. I LOVE stormy weather. I am actually a little obsessed with weather. I love it when we’ve got a big change coming. The weather portion of the nightly news is the only thing I would even consider watching.

That’s another thing--- I really dislike the evening news. I’d much rather focus on the good stuff, and the news rarely does that.

and last, what's something you've been working on…or an upcoming project/event you want to share with us?

I’ve been working on, and just finished, my 3rd CD. It’s called “50 Different Ways”- I have participated now in an online challenge called “50 songs in 90 days”. This upcoming CD is 10 of the songs I wrote during that crunch time last year. It’s about to be sent off for duplication and should be ready within a month. I feel like it’s definitely my very best work so far! I can’t wait for people to hear it.

and i don't want you to wait to hear her....so check this out:

you can also visit her blog here....or buy a cd here.  thanks so much to my last texas woman...stay tuned as i widen my net to catch even more whimsical women to inspire you. and if you have suggestions of artful bloggers who embody this ideal, please share them here!  i'm always looking to expand my community of creative women. happy halloween!


real women have anxiety

oh blog, you know what i love about you? no matter how crazy my life gets, and how much i ignore you…you're still here, waiting with open arms for my return. there are so many things i want to tell you—so much has happened since we last met, i don't even know where to start. i have been learning so much about myself over the past few months…what i am capable of , when i need to ask for help, that it's okay to fail, to be vulnerable, imperfect, human.

you'd think by 33 i'd know these things…and in theory i did. and as it relates to my family, my patients, my friends, it was clear. but apparently i didn't apply the same principles to myself. i always knew that i was a perfectionist, that i set high standards for myself and others. i also recognized that i was very independent, strong-willed, rational, and "tough." and i never thought these were BAD things. i am slowly starting to realize how dangerous they really are in our lives.

in an effort to uphold my promise of authenticity, i will tell a brief story:

there was once a girl who lived in a big city, she had lots of friends and parties and a job that paid the bills. then tragedy struck her family and the girl moved across the country to be closer to them. over time, she grew to love the new city…making friends, attending graduate school, and getting married. but she was growing apart from the family who originally brought her to this place. she had so many dreams, this girl; she wanted to spread her wings and fly in a different direction from those she had known. she longed for someone to understand her, some connection to a community larger than only she and her loving husband.

one day the couple were driving to a nearby town and something terrible happened…the girl could not move her legs. she was terrified and felt as if her whole body was becoming paralyzed. she screamed out for her husband to save her. she gasped for breath, flailing like a fish out of water. she thought she might die in that emergency room in a distant city. but slowly, she regained movement in her legs, and over time, the terror lessened and she could breathe again. the doctors were baffled, they could not understand what had caused these events, the tests proved nothing.

so the girl went on her way, but quietly worried that she might be going crazy. she could not believe that she—an emergency room social worker—had visited one as a patient. she googled "nervous breakdown" and guess what she found…

p   a   n   i   c       a   t   t   a   c   k

she met 9 of the 13 criteria for a severe attack. she could not believe her eyes. could it be true?

i am proud to say that i am in my second month with a very capable therapist. i spend more time journaling my feelings than writing my beloved blog entries. and i am trying to understand the events—and emotions—that led up to such a horrible experience that weekend in august. i am taking baby steps with myself and acknowledging that i am a work in progress. that i still have a lot to learn, and that i am committed to embracing those vulnerabilities that make me so imperfectly human.


draw on yourself

in lieu of the tattoo i suggested and david vetoed...i went ahead and penned this one myself. today was the last day of my unlimited month of yoga (a gracious gift from my little sister)...and my intention was simple:

to be peaceful.

i have also drawn it on the walls...am i getting better at this being a kid thing, or what??  okay, it wasn't the walls, it was my bathroom mirror (with dry erase marker)...but it felt a bit naughty anyway. it makes me think of coloring outside the lines, decorating my mom's hallway in gorgeous crayola hues, all of those things we created and colored and drew all over as kids. doodling in school notebooks, maybe even on the desks, perhaps a bathroom stall in college...no, not me!

but why not break the rules a little bit? do something unexpected. stand facing the back wall of the elevator when you get in. take your kids out of school for the afternoon and let them choose something fun to do. shock yourself with your creativity.

what's one thing you've always wanted to do...but thought you might get in trouble? your homework:  DO IT.  and then let me know how much fun you had.  happy friday!