Who are we underneath the rushing and the routines? We are women – creative and passionate women. And claiming that creativity must become an integral part of our lives.
When I envisioned creating this online space for mamas, there was one part of life that I was determined to shine a light on. One part that I felt we, as women, were really needing to reconnect with if we were to finally live the life we longed for:
As author and creativity guru Elizabeth Gilbert shared in Big Magic, we are all creative creatures – every single one of us. But I would go one step further in this passionate plea for us all to find our creative spark again –
as mamas, this is essential.
Creativity is often the very first thing to go when bub comes along. Think about it – creativity requires space, freedom and spontaneous amounts of time to follow your ‘muse’. Not really conducive to feeding babies or wrangling toddlers.
But without some form of creative output, mamas, we do wither inside. It is as simple as that.
And so, that is why we are creating a monthly creativity spotlight on Happy Mama.
This is more than just a profile of someone we believe is embodying creativity in a new and inspiring way – it is about sparking the interest to explore this side of ourselves in all of our lives. No matter how time poor and resource lacking we are.
How did this idea all come about? Well, it was sparked by a creative moment amongst two mamas, of course.
Heather Robbins is the photographer and Art Director of Happy Mama Media, and the pictures to my words. When I think in stories, she thinks in art. It’s an amazing combination. And once I started to talk to her about this idea, her own creative sparks started flying.
And so, beautiful mama, here we are – the start of our monthly Creativity Feature.
Below, Heather shares why this is so important to her, and what she hopes will come from this focus.
For me, it is my prayer that you will begin to think about all you do in a more creative and passionate way – whether it is the way you create the nightly meal or choose what you wear.
You are a woman and a mother – the ultimate creator. It’s time to embrace her.
It was like any normal conversation between two Mums.
In the backyard, the late morning sun starting to feel warm – probably a little too warm to be drinking hot tea. The kids were running around us, lost in their various games and jumping madly from one thing to the next.
Usually, I wouldn’t have paid much attention to the comments that followed, but it just so happened to be a week after I had read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book “Big Magic” and, like most of my inspirational aha moments, I couldn’t wait to share it with all of my dear friends. So, as soon as I could, I broached the topic of creativity and how Elizabeth’s words had sang so true to me. “Creativity is something we all need to have in our lives – no matter who we are!”
“Yeah, I guess so” my beautiful friend replied, lingering on the ‘guess’ as if she was trying to convince herself.
“But Heather”, she said as she turned to me, “you are incredibly creative. You take such amazing photos. I definitely don’t have a creative bone in my body! I can’t draw, paint or take good photos. I remember in primary school the teacher mocked me for my drawing!”
I sat there, taking it all in, hoping to continue the conversation before one of our screaming children interrupted.
“But didn’t you just tell me you spent your entire weekend in the garden? With two children under the age of 5! You love your garden and look at it!” as I waved my tea mug around in the air.
She looked at me and said nothing for a moment. Don’t get me wrong – I don’t think my comments were a massive ‘aha’ moment for her, but it’s as if I had planted a seed (excuse the pun).
And this is what is so true for our generation.
From a young age we have been fed a BIG fat lie. We’ve been told that creativity is a set box/formula. It is either painting, drawing, taking photos, theatre or some other type of artform. This has lead to so many people really doubting themselves and their creative abilities because they may not have fitted into society’s neat little “Creative Box”. But guess what Mamas? We are all creative!
Each and every one of us.
You may not take great photos like me (or you may take even better ones!), but have you seen my cooking talents? Have you seen me try to delve into a novel? This isn’t about letting my ego take over and pointing out all that I can’t do (we’re very good at that as women, aren’t we?) But this is about being real. Creativity is one of the most vital aspects to our daily mental health – and each of us has something in our lives that uses our creativity. Even if we don’t call it that.
Which is why Amy and I wanted to create a monthly Creative Woman Feature on our beautiful online magazine. This creative “stuff” is so important that to not include it would be like saying to your best friend after she’d just had an an amazing haircut, “Wow I love your dress” making no mention of the new do. It goes hand in hand with our beautifully messy and crazy lives, now that we are Mums.
These women that will be featured are not all going to be “artists”.
They won’t necessarily be doing a creative venture to make money or even receive accolades. They are women that are just like you and I, trying to manage it all, but, somewhere along the line they realised that their creativity was SO important to their well being that they became committed to following those little daily whispers and curiosities. They have clicked that being creative has opened up their souls in ways nothing else can. It has softened them, opened their hearts. It has inspired them. It has aided them. It has equipped them to take on what life has thrown their way.
Their creativity is a mix between in the home and the outside world.
It may be in the way they hug their children, the way they run each week or swim in the ocean every weekend. It may be how they heal their own deep pain by writing poems instead of journaling. It may be that they collect weeds in the garden each week, leaving it looking inviting and open for anyone that visits. It may be the way they interact with people at work or in their local community. It may be the way they cook, always placing wholesome food on the table, the way our grandmothers did.
These women are just as they are: living in this modern, technology savvy world but with the honest and beautiful daily intention to remain connected to that creative woman inside them – no matter how vulnerable that makes them feel.
Because we truly believe that to be a Happy Woman and Mama, we all need creativity.
Read our very first Creative Feature – with poet and author Dr Rebecca Ray – here.