Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I Can See Ghosts

I woke up thinking about that movie, "Ghost Town" where the dentist, who just wants to be alone, has a near-death experience and can suddenly see ghosts. And they want his help. Kind of like "Sixth Sense" but not as scary. That ability would be a blessing and a curse. Sure, you would have the chance to help put things right for people so they could move-on - and heal some wounds they may have left behind. But you would also never be alone and anything you did for yourself would seem selfish since you could be helping someone else at that moment.

What if, instead of seeing dead people, you could see the unborn? You know, people who have not yet come into existence. The Possibilities. I guess that is kind of like the old TV show "Voyagers" where Phineas Bogg (?) and the 12-year old kid travel through time making sure history happens the way it should. One tiny little change, and history spirals out of control. But what if you were responsible for making sure that people were born? Not actually having the baby, but making sure the right people meet and all that. Oh, "Early Edition" was kind of like that too - fixing things that aren't supposed to happen. I think the biggest curse in each of these storylines is that the hero can't "turn it off". There is no way to take a break and just be normal. It is very hard to enjoy the moment, smell the roses, just be... all that.

Why am I dreaming about this stuff lately? Yeh, good question. In the past few months I have gone from one amazing adventure to another, met fascinating, creative people, and had many basic truths challenged. I've moved away from my safe wall and dared to open my mouth and talk to people. (Very uncomfortable!) In return, I've heard this comment from alot of people: "You are SO creative! What a blessing to be so talented." Well, I don't know. Yes. I love to be able to create. I am never happier than when my hands are making art. But... how would you feel if you were responsible for every unborn idea? Or every idea, artwork, or possibility that had been realized, but not properly. Things that should be redone. Problems solved. Pain you could fix, maybe. What if one of your ideas could save the world if you could only buckle down and create it. What if every one idea you sketched opened up unlimited numbers of doors and possibilities? What if all these ideas were always present, jostling to be seen and brought into the real world? The inside of my head is like an enormous room filled with television sets of all sizes and types of reception - all showing different channels. In front of the tvs are billions of ping pong balls bouncing and ricocheting off every surface, never quiet. Honestly, it is exhausting, depressing, and delivers anxiety attacks that no amount of Lexapro could quell.

I walk into a store and my mind redesigns the layout, the signage, the flyers, the individual products... without my realizing I'm doing it. I can't remember why I am came in. I read a book and I wander around for days worrying about the main character and thinking of ways I can help her. Like Ella in "Ella Enchanted" I am obliged to answer any creative request made in my presence. I honestly dread talking to people who say "Oh I have a great idea! You should...." Thank you. I needed another one.

My son and I decided a long time ago that everyone has some kind of super-power. Not all are easy to recognize - the ability to sooth cholicky babies might never be noticed if one is never around babies! But the person who can look into a mostly empty refrigerator and pull together a delicious, healthy, dinner for four... well, THAT is a more useful super power than, say, x-ray vision!!

I have two super powers (that I know of). One I discovered when I was very little. I can see a scene from a different perspective. For example, while riding my bike down a steep hill, I could suddenly see myself riding down the hill from the vantage point of my mom standing at the bottom. Not very useful, and a little freaky. But I can also do it for situations. It's kind of like walking in someone else's shoes. It is confusing and uncomfortable.

My other super power is, I think, much better, but, like Clark Kent's, one that I usually keep to myself. Recent books and movies like "The Secret" and "What the Bleep?!" have helped me to understand it a little, but my husband, and most people I know! think it is a load of @#$%! I can see ghosts. I see visions of things not yet created. I have done it so many times, I think my husband ignores it (probably because he doesn't understand it). I can look at a house, a room, a business, a canvas... and know what it will look like. I see it so clearly, it might as well already be there. For example: think about a renovation you have done, like your kitchen. You love your new space and as years go by you forget it ever looked different. But one morning you walk into the kitchen and you suddenly remember that the window was over there and the fridge was brown and next to the door, etc. You get a very clear image of the way it was. I do that in reverse. It's almost like (my first super power) I am standing in the future, looking back. It's not a hallucination - it's more like an overlay.

This power can be very useful - when I was setting up my store, Wingdoodle, I saw it finished - the playroom, the colors, everything. And that helped me to keep working towards my goal even when people said it would never work. But, sometimes, knowing what the finished product will be, takes away the challenge and the thrill of the unknown. I say, "What's the point?" and file the sketches away. And, if an idea cannot be accomplished (lack of money or emotional support), it doesn't just fade away. It is always "there" reminding me of my failures - just like people-ghosts.

Since I am not crazy (yet?), I am always reading about creativity and spirituality and trying to find ways to control everything or at least ignore some things. And since I know that I cannot control or change those around me... I find that I fantasize about finding an "Alice". The Brady Bunch family is not my ideal, but Alice is. I dream of a motherly type person with a great sense of humor, who would keep my house under control, take care of my kids, feed me dinner, listen to my ideas, give gentle advice, reassure me that I am doing great, and tell me everything will be OK.

We all dream about finding our true love, soul mate, best friend, yin-yang... or the person who completes us - whether they be spouse, friend or housekeeper. I think I will know mine when he/she says "What a great idea! Let me take care of that for you." (And then DOES!)

(PS Thanks for reading this and helping get one more idea/ping pong ball out of my head! :-)

2 comments:

  1. Yes! And oh my, do I want an Alice, too. Not so much the housekeeping (although that would be nice) but the "let me take care of that for you."

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  2. Wow, what an amazing post! I so get you. I also have a bajillion ideas bouncing around in my head. I'm limited by time and my propensity for losing track. Losing track of what I was thinking about, of important stuff to get the job done (where are my KEYS darn it?!), even the whole plan. I write stuff down, in the middle of the night, at traffic lights... and then I might lose my notes.

    I'm a disorganized ping-ponger, I guess. Yet some of those ideas do make it to fruition, and some make it to a REAL notebook for potential future exploration... or not.

    Hey, I saw your article about Zentangles in Cloth Paper Scissors this month and have been perusing your blog(s). Your website looks great - I assume you used iWeb to do that? I'm still ping-ponging options for my own website.

    In the meantime, I am planning a post about Zentangles and, well, you. I think I may publish it on Saturday. Swing by and take a look if you like. ;)

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