What’s the through-line?!

Courageous Art is a monthly gathering of reflective souls who are unfolding in real time. 

We engage in reflective art around a theme. Typically, as the facilitator of the experience, I identify a theme ahead of time and communicate it to the registrants via email confirming their registration and providing information about how to join. 

Last month, the theme didn’t come to me as it normally does …I was stuck and sensed a need to invite the group into the theme identification process. The only thing that had come to my mind was something about “transition.” 

We started the session with our normal introductions & sharing what mediums we had brought for our creative reflective process. Then I tasked us with a freewrite in response to “what is on your mind tonight, what do you need? ” OR  “when I consider transition, I think…..” We freewrote for about 2 mins and then reported out. 

It seemed everyone had some sort of transition in mind. Given that it was the end of the year typical transitions were discussed in terms of one year ending and another beginning. But also there were themes around job transitions, role transitions, and self-discovery types of transitions. 

I won’t go through a play by play of all that we did that night, but I do want to share some of the profound takeaways that I had from the evening. One of the things I love about doing these sessions online versus in person is that I get to play along and benefit on a different level than I have in the past as a facilitator. (A perk from the restrictions of COVID). 

Takeaways

  • There is a liminal space between where we’ve been and where we are going – some folks talked about it as a hallway, or visualized it as a foyer or lobby area before entering the next room. This space is important and not to be rushed through – there is work to be done in the “in between” – some of that work is rest, some release, some baby steps forward, some taking stock of what you have in that liminal space and what you want to continue carrying. 
  • There is a through-line that connects the before, not yet, and now – that through-line is you. You are with you, your experiences, your feelings, your filters, and your beliefs all travel with you as your journey continues unfolding. For me, on that night, the through-line was a wave which represents “this too shall pass”  – the good and the bad will pass, it will not always be this way. It brought me back to a tattoo I got on my 40th birthday with the same wave and sentiment. 
  • The before, not yet, and now are fluid spaces, not rigidly traveled through never to be touched again, but rather they are places that exist in you, your inner landscape and serve to bolster you along the journey. Bringing you comfort, rest, lessons, and courage for what is ahead.

As I reflect on that night now, more than a month later, I am grateful. Grateful for the opportunity to slow my mind and really take stock of my current stop on the journey. Grateful for the community of other reflective souls who unpack and share their journeys allowing us all to learn and grow from one another. And grateful to be seen by others, seen in their stories, and seen in my stories – recognizing the common reflection of humanity.

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