Childhood Inclinations.

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What did you enjoy when you were younger?

And are you doing it now?

The chance that our natural inclinations or leanings were evident at a young age is high. Did you love to sing or dance? Did you love to play sport? Or do jigsaws? Were you passionate about bird-watching, or whales, or baking? What made you tick as a kid? And is that in your life now?

For me, when I was little, I can remember four main things- writing, drawing, making crafty things, and dogs. I was so passionate about dogs in fact that I wanted to be one. Alas not all dreams can come true! Art, however, I knew even back then was intrinsic to being. I would draw just for the sake of it, make things just for the love of it, without any expectation of the outcome. The point was the making; the doing.

Somewhere along the way I forgot all that.

The turning point had come with having to do my Leaving Certificate (final school exams). I had studied art all the way through school with the guidance of a brilliant art teacher (thank you Sidella O’Brien) and I really loved it. However, when exams loomed suddenly the enjoyment was substituted with ‘I need to get lots of points for this to get into college’, and something flipped. Once I sat my final exams my drawing days came to a sudden halt- it is there my portfolio ended as my focus shifted to college, and more exams. Academia seemed to push away the core my creative expression and as the academic system took a bigger hold on my life, I had less and less time for sketching and playing with clay figures -just for the love of it.

Unbeknownst to me I was pushing back a vital part of myself.

That is, until last year when something else happened which shifted it all again, beautifully so.

You see, I’d had a health scare. Awaiting test results and sitting in the unknown of it all,the vitality which I had pushed away however came suddenly and surprisingly running towards me, calling me back to this forgotten part myself. A deep urge arose, inviting me to my pen and paper, to draw again, just for the love of it.

I was skeptical at first and initially pushed it away. But the urge was strong, so I started to listen. As I did something else started happening too- a sense of calm arose, and much less fear. Time almost stands still when I’m drawing. Hours and hours can go by without me really noticing- I get absorbed. And so it was that I was fully distracted from thinking about test results. Boom. There it was again, that feeling from childhood, which had been with me all along but which I had chosen not to notice. But when I needed it the most it came, as a gift, like a familiar friend- the simple act of drawing.

I’m lucky. That scare turned out to be just that, a scare- thankfully.

But in the jolt was a big lesson for me- to tune deeply into what nourishes and vitalises my creative spirit, just for the sake of it.

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And so it is that these little creatures have started to visit. To me they are welcome guests, each bringing me healing, hope and giving my inner child a home again. I am happy also that a little doggie by the name of Finn is in my life now too, a steady companion to the creative process- in a waggy tail kind of way. She is a dream come true too.

What did you love to do as a child? And are you still doing it?

 

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yes I said yes I will yes

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Today I took to the polls, for today a big Tá was in order. That was a yes to equality, a yes to diversity and a yes freedom of speech and expression. Mostly it is a yes to love, in whatever guise it comes in. For love is love. Love does not have a gender. Love does not have a moral conscience. Love is the gravitational force that keeps this all together. And when I say ‘all’, I mean all of us.

Today, thousands of Irish citizens have taken to the booths and a wave of emigrants have come back to the island, #hometovote. It is an emotional day, which thousands more have fought for and even given their lives for. Oscar Wilde has been on my mind today. I vote too to honour him. His legacy set a train in motion. Today it feels like a new threshold will be passed. Whatever happens when the results come in tomorrow, there has been a shift in consciousness. Equality has been redefined.

Cycling through the streets of Dublin over the last few days, meeting Yes canvasser after Yes canvasser, seeing people of all hues and colours wearing Yes stickers has made my heart burst open and a few tears be shed. We literally are reconstituting the world.

My heart is moved by all I cannot save:

so much has been destroyed

I have to cast my lot with those

who age after age, perversely,

with no extraordinary power,

reconstitute the world.” – Adrienne Rich.

And through the ordinariness of our lives, and through the power generated through our collective power, here we are, reconstituting.

yes I said yes I will yes.”


One Wild Life: The Evolution

Hello and welcome.

It is so exciting to be here. For those of you who have been following my missives and musings for a while, you will know that I have been writing and blogging under the website and banner of One Wild Life. It was a great online home for a while, but I had been sensing an evolution brewing. What you see here has emerged from those 7 years of blogging and a lot of amazing experiences and connections. So it is farewell to this view, and a welcoming of the new…

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I decided not to carry over my previous blog. It was time for a fresh start, and a chance to let go of the past and allow the future to emerge. Starting with a blank slate has been wonderfully enlivening and I am so excited to get going on this new iteration of my work.

For those who have been following along all these years, I so appreciate your support and I hope we can journey together over the coming years. And for those new here, you are so very welcome. Have a look around and be sure to sign up to my newsletter for updates, happenings and free resources.

Onwards.