My name is Elizabeth and I am a retired Marketing Director that left the workforce to pursue a life that feels like it's worth living. A friend had me do an exercise where I imagined my last year of life and I found it very profound (listed in resources at bottom of post). It turns out working in marketing isn't a part of my perfect life fantasy and I decided that perhaps one of the reasons I felt dead inside is because I wasn't pursuing my true dreams. You know? The one that is stuffed deep in your gut... the one that is stupid or crazy or will never happen because you have to do everything else first. The one you tell yourself lies about so you never have to try it and be crushed if it doesn't work out. You have one of those? I know I have a couple!
It has taken a bit of time to quiet all the "shoulds" and the "cant's" I have been carrying around for forever to find what it is that I truly want to be doing.
After some time and walking through some very dark places I now feel like I know myself enough to tell you about me and start carving out a place for the true me in this world. If you are not there yet, or perhaps you are, I hope you can join me on my journey and find your own creative inspiration in it.
OCCUPATION: painter, writer, wife, mom
THINGS I LOVE: good design, gardening, painting, plants, coast lines, hiking, photography, the smell of the forrest floor, my family, painting, the human spirit, my two pups, and writing.
THINGS I DON'T LOVE: malt balls, loud noises, mean people, incorrectly sized images on websites and social media, bad font, folding laundry, and feeling lonely.
THINGS I STRUGGLE WITH: depression, anxiety, ptsd, gossiping, perfectionism, returning phone calls, and spiritual/emotional/physical sobriety.
SURPRISING THINGS ABOUT ME: I didn't graduate highschool, but I did graduate from the University of California, Berkeley. I used to do amatuer boxing (my knees hate me for it). I lived in China for a year and studied there for another 3 months. I can speak some Mandarin. My voice sounds like a sweet 5 year old's but I can be very far from sweet. ;)
WHAT IS THIS WEBSITE ALL ABOUT? This is a place that I carved out to share my journey in recovery and to explore trauma, addiction, and invite you into my brain through paint + ink. It's a blog, a safe space, and unofficial art therapy. I create imagery with paint (and sometimes photography) that gives you an window into what’s inside my brain. I'm sure this space will continue to iterate, however at it's core it will always be about experiencing the world through creativity and all the bumps along the way. I hope it becomes a place that you can relate to and if I’m lucky, my own honesty/struggles will shine a light on the fact that you are not alone… because as I’ve heard from others, addiction and mental illness thrive in the darkness and together we can bring it out into the light.
THINGS THIS WEBSITE IS NOT - A plan of recovery or alternative to therapy. I myself am not trained in therapy, psychiatry, or addiction. I am in two 12 steps programs and I see a licensed therapist and psychiatrist. I am one person with my own experiences and thoughts. My opinions represent my own truth/experience and may not coincide with research or your experiences. I cannot help with your trauma, addiction, mental illness, or life struggles. I will not answer requests for advice because I am not your sponsor or your therapist. If you are moved to share with me please do and if I am moved to respond I will.
Last year of life exercise found in this wonderful book | Gentle Path Through the 12 Steps