Winter colors. Gray, white. A big silvery moon. The stark frigidness of the first day. Reminding me if I can step out today, I can any of the 364 to follow. Yet today, today I want to stay inside. Not hiding, per say. But certainly not venturing far.

Inspiration is motivation. Which sounds like a silly quote someone typed utilizing a modern font on a filtered background featuring a mountain the particular “someone” has never actually seen, much less climbed. Sorry if that sounds judgmental.

I visited multiple art museums last week while in Chicago. I could be incorrect, but I’m going to say four. My children can inform me if I’m wrong. I enjoy seeing art. And of course, there are certain artists whose work I particularly like. An occasional surprise is good as well. Something unexpected.

Chicago Cultural Center

I will not make this a report on my favorite painters, though. I will make it a brief synopsis of what I sometimes need. Which is inspiration.

The meaning(s) of the word:

1. the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.

2. the drawing in of breath; inhalation.

Let’s be real for a moment. The past year was, shall I say, not the easiest. Which doesn’t necessarily mean tragedy befell me. It doesn’t mean I heard horrific news that affected me personally. But it does mean that the in and out, daily grind and minutiae was straining. There were difficulties. Good things, sure. My son graduated from college and moved onto grad school. My daughter continued to succeed academically while at the same time accomplished meaningful work. I had milestones. Even some particularly wonderful moments. Yet. When I reflect back, my mind is weary.

Tired, I find myself ill prepared. Hence the needed inspiration. Mental stimulation? Yes, please. But also the drawing in of breath. I’m thinking of the word….”gasp”. To be so surprised, so taken aback that my breathing is altered.

van Gogh

The constant battle between being even keeled and outwardly joyful. Between balance and living all in. Inspiration sort of pushes me. Beyond the me I comfortably fit into. Maybe towards an extreme version? The me I wish I was? The me who gasps at beauty seen and heard. The me who searches for joy even when bogged down and struggling to catch a glimpse. Stimulated enough to feel; do something creative.

Chicago Cultural Center

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