Borderless Doubt

I don’t know about you, but this has been a difficult week. It is as if I have been traveling for so long that the wonders of the world no longer shine with their marvelous newness.  I know what’s happening is awesome, but I just don’t feel it.   Once there were highs with each success, now there is just a “BLAH” – done it before.

I have been doubting myself and my goals.  Maybe, I’m not good at this.  Maybe I can’t possibly make this work.   Maybe I was wrong about synchronicity and meaning.  Maybe, I need a new high? I’m good at other things, and unlike art, “proven” to be good at it. Seriously, I’m a really good teacher, project manager, designer and other things.  I’m an ideal employee.

BUT, it really did seem like when I started sharing my art that I was making not just a good choice, but one that cracked open a view of the world that made everything fall into place.  An authentically, meaningful choice.  

I’ve been trying.  I’ve been coaching myself and telling myself this:

 Doubt is a natural part of the artistic process, dance with it.  

But doubt is a sucky dance partner, all he does is step on my feet and piss me off and he won’t leave me alone!  Grrrrr….

This morning, I woke to two unsolicited messages.  Seriously, they were in my inbox when I woke up from two separate but wonderful souls.

One is a cartoon from a friend from:

Born Like an Artist -
Born Like an Artist –

And then this one:

“So since I’m still up at 3 this morning, I want to tell you how incredibly beautiful your print is, and how much it means to me. The gold details bring such life to the vivid colors. The curves and circle touch something deeply feminine in me. And the reds and oranges takes the pain and hurt that has been my life-long companion and turned it into beauty. You created art that speaks to my soul, and I will forever be proud to have your work grace my home.”

Garden on Fire Detail (C) Marika Reinke
Garden on Fire Detail (C) Marika Reinke

And there it is again; this is meaningful!  This is the right choice.  

Dang, it is hard though.  It is a boiling pot full of doubt, self-reflection, points of weakness, victory, beauty, vision and giving, giving, giving but… it is the right choice. And there are no borders – it is messy.

More awe-inspiring are two in-tuned people out there who snapped doubt back in place for me this morning.  Thank you.  Keep doing that to everyone in your life.

I think we all should.


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  1. This post brought a few tears to my eyes, particularly the last frame of the cartoon. We all struggle with doubt. Once we stop doubting, maybe we stop caring too? I don’t know, but IMO your work is beautiful and you should definitely keep sharing it. Those two messages didn’t happen by accident. Wonderful post (and you do wonderful work). This, too, shall pass. Keep the faith. <3 (Hey, and I'm preaching to myself too!)

  2. It’s a lovely looooonggggg comic – isn’t it? I was thinking the same as I wrote, that doubt is part of what pushes artists, always searching for meaning. Even when she starts to draw outside the comic strip, she doubts and that pushes her further into the borderless possibilities. Artists are searchers.

    And thank you, I appreciate it. I always enjoy seeing your work too and your constant and consistent pursuit of your craft and passion as well as your careful tending to your blog and community. (I knew it was Bill Murray BTW – meant to comment but I got distracted – as I’m letting myself get right now.)

  3. What a kind reply, thank you so much. And it’s so nice you posted these messages you’ve received, to offer this encouragement to others. We doubt, we press forward, we color outside the lines and we break the lines and fly. I just love it! Thank you again, and I hope you’re feeling the arty love/encouragement!

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