t-minus 32 days and counting

Hadiya Williams, Pyramid Atlantic letterpress calendar 2011My husband, Ian, and I looked at each other today and gasped: 32 days until we move our entire home, pets and lives to Germany! We've been so caught up in talking about, deciding about, planning for, and now managing the myriad tasks of an international move, that I'm missing the point.

This blog is titled Designing a Life for a reason. I started it three years ago because I wanted to explore and document my journey of intentionally creating an authentic life. By that I mean making choices and taking action to live wide-awake, and doing what I must to keep the spark alive, feet on the ground, and soul satisfied.

(Re)discovering my artist self has been a big part of the life redesign, well-documented here. While the art is an expression of my transformation, I've left some things out. Not that I need to share my every thought here, but I think that a huge part of "life design" is conjuring the courage to carve an intentional path in the first place.

Which that brings me back to art and Germany. Each of these decisions alone is asking more of me than I could have imagined. Together, they're making my head spin a little, but in a good way.

Nobody could have prepared me for the "stuff" that's getting stirred up by leaving a well-paying 25+ year career in business to hitch a ride on the train of soul-feeding creative opportunities that feel so right I can't believe it. I came of age in the 80s when women wore power suits and many of us out-earned our spouses.

Nobody could have prepared me for what it feels like to be in the enviable but terrifying position of sitting down to face my new professional self, an artist, every day and do the work.

Nobody could have prepared me for the angst of choosing to leave a well-grounded, rich, happy life in Alexandria, VA in exchange for living without regrets by choosing to go on this adventure with my husband.

While my identity appears to be shifting at the speed of light, this has been years in the making. Current events such as shutting down my consulting practice, terminating my lease at Printmakers, and the enormous dog crate in our living room only make it feel as if life is spinning quickly into something I don't recognize anymore.

I don't want to miss a minute of this, though. Instead of just "getting it done," I owe it to myself to pay attention. One way is to start writing about the whole story here. To focus on the art and the backstory that inspires it in the first place.