I’ve been in a car accident.
I start to go into shock, as I stare out the windshield in front of me, and the thought that rises is,
Am I going to die today?
My whole passenger side bashed in, I’m up on the sidewalk, spun facing the wrong way.
I look down and see my legs.
They are ok.
I look down at my arm which hurts,
but is moving.
Behind me the driver of the huge Jeep that hit me is getting out and moving towards me screaming angrily.
I slowly get out of my car and a man hands me a small bottle of water, asking,
Are you ok? I’m a cop. I’ve called in the accident. Help is coming.
As I walk around to the passenger side of my car, I see the entire side crumpled in…..my car is totaled.
I am BLOCKS away from my home….and the craziest part is,
I just left the scene of another accident I was in. Literally 15 minutes ago…I rear-ended a car that stopped suddenly on the highway.
I was in two accidents back to back on the same day.
WHO does this happen to?
HOW could this happen?
Am I going to die today?
I usually refer to 2013 as my Year of the Flame. It began with a devastating divorce, and then turned into a raging bonfire where I lost my home, was robbed twice, lost a dear friend to a heart-attack, and then this day; the day I was in two car accidents back to back.
It was November, and I was still in shock over the loss of my friend in September. I had gone up to visit my best friend just north of NYC, and had spent the day playing with her twins, and being outside in the vibrant fall leaves, taking pictures of them gleefully playing in their swings.
I left her house smiling, so grateful for the time, and soon was entering back into Queens….and then BOOM.
When the first accident happened, it was more startling than anything. Everyone was ok, and I immediately called my insurance to let them know. The other drivers were pleasant, but I drove away shaken.
Coming into Astoria, just blocks from my apartment, the intersection was blocked by a double parked van, and I couldn’t see. As I came into the intersection, a speeding black Jeep came barreling down and completely took me out.
After the shock wore off, I found myself faced with a larger problem.
I was scheduled to drive to my alma mater, Penn State the following weekend to see my mentor’s one woman show, and now I had no car.
I knew I could rent a car….but could I drive?
Did I feel I could?
Two days later, I went to see my acupuncturist to tell her about the accident, as I was experiencing back issues.
It’s a good thing you came in right away. Fear and trauma will store in the muscles. This way we can move it.
I lay on my stomach, and she placed a needle right in the heart of my back muscle that took the brunt of the accident, and I immediately started to weep.
My fear pouring down my face.
My anger, my sadness, my shock.
Have you ever had a huge accident?
Have you ever had a huge disappointment that took you out of your Art?
When we create from the deepest parts of ourselves, it can feel like a huge black Jeep pummels us in the face of rejection or something not turning out as we wanted:
The rejection letter from the publishers
The booking agent saying no
The gallery not responding
The show that barely sells any tickets
Not to mention, an actual life accident that leaves you really questioning,
Am I safe?
Can I do this?
What do we do in that moment?
I remember really questioning whether or not it was a good idea to drive to Penn State, days after the accident. While I did have some bruising, the biggest piece was my fear.
I was scared to get behind the wheel again.
My best friend and my mother both encouraged me to drive again, otherwise the fear would set in. It would become something larger.
I would make it permanent, and start a new belief that wouldn’t serve me,
I’m a bad driver.
And what would be possible with this belief?
Not much….I would probably never drive again, and not experience new roads.
And for you?
What is the belief you have formed in the face of your accidents?
Is it serving you and your Art?
Is it allowing you to get back behind the wheel, back in the driver seat and receive the acclaim you desire?
I fully admit, I was terrified to drive again, but I rented a car and drove to Penn State with no incident, and you know the biggest gift I received?
That I could DO it.
That I was CAPABLE.
The only way you will know this is by DOING.
We can spend hours, days, YEARS stuck in a belief and wake up one day staring at gorgeous Art that has gone nowhere….and realize we let fear be the driver.
But, what if you got back in the seat?
What is possible for you in your Art then?
What is possible for this ONE life you have?
The first step, is to FACE your fear head on.
Love this part of yourself.
Indeed, this part has believed it was keeping you safe.
This is not a moment of shaming or saying you are wrong…this is when you LOVE this part of you as much as possible. Allow yourself to feel.
Hand over your heart say,
Even though I feel terrified, I deeply love and respect myself.
Watch the fear rise and then fall.
And then get back in the driver seat.
You CAN do this.
You are CAPABLE.
Turns out the accident didn’t kill you. The rejection didn’t kill you. It was painful….but here you are. You are still breathing, and with that breath, you have the whole universe.
So take your car out of park, and enter your new road.
This is your Creative Life, how do you want to live it?