Just Me

On Friday I shared some thoughts about the ebb and flow of the "openness" of a heart--both in blog-land and in real-life (although I would maintain that blog-land is quite real, or can be if we let it). Many of you shared some amazing thoughts as well in the comments section (thank you!), inspiring thoughts that I've been chewing on all weekend and working into a series of posts.

This is the one that's resonating with me today:

dont always have to be profound
Cindy was one of my very first "blog friends." She writes and creates at 12 Tribes.

Ebb and flow happens in nature. Some kinds of flowers open in the daytime and close at night, as if to rest. It's completely natural to have seasons with an outpouring of words, inspiration, vision that are followed by seasons of quiet. We are often just too hard on ourselves, especially we women. I know I struggle with the "I'm too much and I'm not enough" syndrome myself.

So today I just want to be me.

Girls on Baltic Sea
It's true that I often tend to take lifemyself and others too seriously. I am a firstborn, a dreamer, a deliberate and thoughtful person. At the same time, I would say that I am quite funny and quirky. Silly even. Not everyone gets to see this side of me because I can be shy. But if you were to meet me in person for the first time, I really doubt that your impression of me would be the same as the impression I might give in my writing, which gets quite wordy and deep at times (just in case you hadn't noticed ;)).

If we were to meet over a cup of coffee for the very first time, this would probably be me:
  • Wearing a messy ponytail or perhaps two braids. I don't often go to the trouble of fixing (a.k.a. one hour of flat-ironing) my hair. As a kid I always wanted to wear two long braids like Laura Ingalls Wilder, but my mom always kept my coarse, thick, naturally curly hair (my new hairdresser recently christened it "explosion hair") chopped short.
  • Ordering a Chai Latte and then stealthily eating some sort fruit-and-cheese snack from my bag. I'm not cheap, just gluten-free. Unless (please, puh-lease) you know of a delectable (or even a mediocre) gluten-free bakery in or near Hamburg, Germany?!
  • Sporting a t-shirt, or something very much like a t-shirt. Fancy for me is a bit of embellishment on a t-shirt or a scarf with a t-shirt, or maybe a skirt with a t-shirt. Plus jeans and tennis shoes, of course.  I'm not super stylish, although sometimes I think I would like to be. 
  • Smiling a lot. Smiling a lot, a lot. After I spend an afternoon with someone over coffee, my face always hurts from smiling. 
  • Talking a lot, maybe waaaay to much, depending on the kind of talker you are, of course. I used to talk very little, which is why I developed the habit of smiling a lot. Now I talk a lot and I smile a lot.  I'm still a bit shy, but I can really open up when I'm one-on-one.    
  • Listening a lot too. I'm pretty sure I'm a good listener, or at least that I used to be when I didn't talk so much. Now I always second-guess myself because there's a bit of a re-learning curve in calculating the talking-to-listening ratio. 
  • Spilling something, inevitably, or dropping some messy food down the front of my shirt. This happens to me whether my kids are with me or not. I just get so caught up in all of the talking and listening and smiling that I lose track of where I am and what I'm doing and the whole how-to-eat-properly thing.

Ok, this was fun. See how my silly side is coming out a little? :) 

What would YOU be like if we were to meet over a cup of coffee?

I think of myself as a pretty simple girl. But I love how even the simple things in life can have profound depths--like Kathleen Kelly says in You've Got Mail (one of my favorite movies!), "all this nothing has meant more to me than so many somethings." Maybe that's why I love art so much--pretty pictures, "art for art's sake," can uplift you without words. I think my artwork is very much like me on first impression--bright and cheerful, breezy and not overbearing. But art also invites you to delve into a deeper story when you are ready to go there.

Anyway, that's me. *Sigh.*  Just me.  Saying "hello" to you, my friends.  Practicing no pressure to be profound. 


  1. I miss you alot. I miss not being there with my neices and brother and law and experiencing life together. I miss not being able to know all the new things going on in my amazing sister's life as they happen. I miss Sunday lunch with everyone. I miss Playstation with Tobi. I miss Penny whom I've only seen as a baby, and I miss Winny whose pictures regulary melt my heart. You are loved, and you are missed! I long for the day we are together again, if even for a few minutes.

  2. Too cute! I too love chai lattes! I have been spotting headbands a lot lately because I do t want to flat irony mess mine is short but as I get older it's been getting curly. Plus the red dye! I have been called conversant when our social worker did our home study! How embarrassing! I feel very deeply, I will be the one that can't sleep at night because of someone else's crisis. I take life away too seriously and know we have grace in our lives to help me loosen up and learn how to play

  3. It's funny, I think of myself similarly. Are so many of us alike? Do you find that you see yourself in other people's writing?

  4. Hi, I've just stumbled across your blog - It was just what I needed to read today. I'm fairly new to blogging and find it difficult to fill in the spaces between photos! Maybe I need to relax a little! Love your artwork, will pop in again.

  5. What a great post! I feel like we just had cup of coffee together. Although I would have had a diet coke- never did get into the coffee taste (but the smell is something different- love love love the smell!). My hair would have the 70's flip like Shaun Cassidy- not something I love about my hair but I have yet to find a flat iron or curling iron that can outsmart my devious hair so I usually don't bother with them...I'd probably have a matching spill on my shirt too. My family jokes about how much stuff I manage to spill no matter how careful I am. When I am arting in the studio I always end up with paint on me or at least in my hair. Happy 4th of July!

  6. This is the greatest post. First off I want to thank you for my comment from last week. It means a lot to me. ...So I am nearly always in some sort of pony or little messy piggie buns. I have crazy hair, and yes, a whole hour to flat iron is a wicked waste of my time, although I LOVE the outcome when I do! I am pretty casual, like you. I love tank tops and skirts and flip flops, but also toe nail polish and make-up. Casual, but still kinda girly! I would have a soy coffee drink and love to talk too! Woot! Yes, meeting a friend and catching up does hurt the jaws! :D

  7. I just saw this post! My heart is pounding and tears springing to my eyes...thank you so much for the name of "friend"! Ah, those words look impressive with your treatment{smiling}...

    What would I be wearing to meet for the first time over coffee - messy ponytail, cup of black, strong coffee {sumatra is the best!}, a listening ear, a smile, anticipation and a bit of nerves...and I am sure to either stammer, spill or drop something {I think God has an angel jostle me(!) just to make sure I don't take myself too seriously!}

    Blessings on this fall day...I am sure I would be vintagely bundled if we were meeting in Germany, here in Texas? Capris and a white T-shirt!

    1. Cindy, I totally meant to send you a link to this post since I wrote it inspired by your comment. So sorry, I must have forgotten! Thank you for sharing your "just me." Maybe someday we really can meet for that chat and cup of coffee! I love that you say God has an angel jostle you to drop or spill something, just so you don't take yourself too seriously. I will remember to smile and think of that angel next time I do something clumsy--which will definitely be sometime in the next couple of hours! ;)


Thank you for being kind with your words and generous with your time!