So as you might already know … I’m having a baby that’s not actually a baby, but a tiny, sweet thing.
It’s a playground. The Playground. A real-life studio for everything that my duck and I teach.
And now it’s being born.
There is the waiting.
The waiting. And the waiting.
There is the not being ready because you can’t be ready, but what the hell you’re committing to stepping into this new role anyway.
The knowledge that everything is changing.
The double-checking of everything.
The stashing of supplies.
And of course, preparation happens on different levels simultaneously.
So there’s physical preparation. Energy preparation. Emotional preparation. Mental and spiritual.
There’s preparation in the hard (everything I do that is tangible, that can be seen and touched).
And there’s preparation in the soft (everything I do that is symbolic, subtle, part of a process).
All happening at the same time.
A short list of some of the elements in my own preparations:
It all started with the baby blanket.
As soon as I knew I was metaphorically having this baby-like thing, it was clear that toys were needed. Toys!
So I bought us a beautiful baby blanket (yay, Etsy!) and kept it in my workspace to remind me that everything I was doing was connected to bringing this being into form.
Help from metaphor mouse.
Whenever I find myself not wanting to do something, it’s invariably related to internal stucknesses that need attention.
And I often play with words and their meanings as a way to soften resistance, so we have had many visits from Metaphor Mouse, my beloved caped superhero.
Which helped me name things.
Having an attorney was kind of intimidating, which is how my barrister became Jerry the Bannister.
My CPA is a pirate! And even The Playground had already named itself. Fun-brewing instead of “fund raising”. And everyone who was helping me?
The fairy godmothers!
My group leaders at the Kitchen Table were the first to hear the news, and they immediately formed into the best cheering squad ever.
I’ve been doing huge amounts of energy and emotional preparation with my pretend-sister Hiro, who has been the most amazing source of strength and guidance. As well as my giggling partner in crime.
Many sessions of mental preparation with Carolyn, who has been gently zapping stucknesses right and left.
And of course I can’t forget Hope, my real estate witch.
And everyone else who is rooting for me.
My gentleman friend.
My favorite uncle.
My friends and clients and students.
My commenter mice and Beloved Lurkers who have been crossing extremities and sending love.
The collecting of literal tangible things, beyond the baby blanket.
Sometimes practical, useful things. With boring names like “beverage dispenser” and “trash receptacle”.
And sometimes symbolic things that provide a sense of protection, safety, specialness. Things to give love. Things to help the space feel loved.
Like this perfect, playful mezuzah that I bought from Jennie.
The singing bowl from Nepal that Hiro gave the Playground.
The pirate ship wheel that you’ll read about tomorrow or the next day.
The many Very Personal Ads.
The very first thing I did when it dreamed itself up inside of me was to begin writing it love letters. Many, many love letters.
Tiny ones on post-it notes. And long, rambling ones that took up pages and pages of my notebook.
And then the mind maps and the extravagant Charting of Flow (because of course I suck at flow charts, but if you chart flow than somehow it’s easier).
I gave over my office to Project-ing this. The floor got covered in index cards and maps.
The walls are for the fun-brewing charts.
We arranged for a fake stage so that I could pretend to be teaching at the Playground during my Shiva Nata and yoga practice.
And the play.
The figuring out what is stuck, using every technique that I teach.
Where I’m going with this.
Oh, who knows. I’m too excited with the waiting to find out if we got the lease.
The lease! The John Cleese! The flock of geese! The queen’s niece! The Witherspoon that is Reese! Oh boy oh boy oh boy oh boy!
But I will say this:
For me, doing things in the soft is just important as taking steps in the hard, and I try to make sure I’m always doing some of both.
Also, this creation is all about play and fun and goofiness. And about how these qualities are part of transforming things.
So I need my process of creation to be an experience that is playful, silly, light-hearted, pleasurable.
Which is hard, because so many parts of the creative process can be so completely painful and agonizing (did I mention the waiting?!)
Reminding myself (several times a day) that the point of a playground is having a place to play (and to ground) has been ridiculously helpful.
Comment zen for today.
You are welcome to bring the baby playground gifts in the form of love and excitement and good wishes.
Because I consider you one of our symbolic good fairies too.
And I’ll just add that I’m not ready right now to hear what-ifs or uh-ohs or anything that isn’t full-on enthusiasm. Because this is my tiny, sweet thing and it is sleeping. Shhhh!