(And what you can learn from my process)
Had you asked me when I started creating this website in June when it would be ready, I probably would have said “August. Definitely by August.” In August? “Oh September. Definitely by September!” By October, I was pulling my hair out. Finally come November I was ready to to gracefully birth her: NancyLucina.com
Whew! What a process!
As I’m pretty much obsessed with childbirth, I usually find a way to relate everything back to it. But honestly, creating this site was a lot like birthing a baby. Here’s some things I learned along the way that you can apply to a creative process or to your labor…
1. Choices, choices so many choices! Was I going to use a theme? Build it from scratch? Who would help me? Which email campaign would I use? Who will host my domain? You’re starting to get the picture. This is often how newly pregnant women feel, overwhelmed with choices such as: Natural birth? Hospital birth? Home birth? Birth center? Water birth? Hire a doula? Hypno-birth? And the list goes on. My advice: find an expert to help you sift through all of the choices. If this expert is good, not only will she help you to see what all of your options are, but she will also help you tap into what is most in alignment for YOU and help you choose based on that.
2. Connect with someone who can truly listen to you and help you with the details. Do you think anyone who visits my website will notice that the mandalas found throughout the page are actually inspired by the pattern that Venus makes when it orbits around the Earth? And that I chose that because Venus is a symbol of the Goddess, the feminine, and childbirth? No, of course not! But those kind of details mattered to ME. Building this website was like revealing my heart and soul to the digital world and I couldn’t have done it without my amazing graphic designer who listened deeply to my visions and helped me manifest those in ways I never could have alone. Similarly when you can find someone to be a part of your birth team who truly listens to you and keeps your preferences in mind, you can get help with the details that make the birth of your child sacred and special. Often this is a best friend or doula who will take time to decorate your birthing space, take the perfect pictures, light special candles for you, or make sure a certain song is sung as soon as your baby enters the world. It may not mean much to others, but all of these details will make a world of difference to you when you look back on your birth.
3. OMG! I can’t do this anymore! When I was about 95% finished with this site, the last 5% was FULL of tiny details that needed to be dealt with that I simply had not thought of before. There were a few times where I felt, “I’m done…this is never going to happen!” Welcome to “transition” my friends. “Transition,” in the birthing world, is the name of that magical and sometimes terrifying space that usually lasts around half an hour to an hour (though it definitely varies) but feels like an eternity. This is usually right before the mother enters into the “pushing phase.” Even mamas who are extremely committed to a natural birth may say, “I give up. I’m not doing this anymore. Give me the drugs.” During this phase it is extremely important that you have at least one person around you who won’t take you too seriously when you say things like this. Rather, they will look you in the eye and say “You ARE doing this. You can do this. You will meet your baby soon. I believe in you.” And sure enough, meeting the baby is right around the corner. So don’t be fooled by those murky thoughts that reside within “transition.” Your project will come to a completion and you will meet your baby. I promise.
4. Baby comes when Baby’s ready. After telling myself and many others that my site would be ready months before it actually was, I felt a little defeated after a while when people kept asking me how it was going. Similarly, birthing mothers feel the same way when their “due date” comes and goes and everyone is calling and saying, “Well????” All I can say is baby will come when baby’s ready. Forget launch dates, goal dates and due dates! Stay connected to the process and trust that it will all manifest exactly as it should. Due dates should really be called “due months” anyway.
5. Surrender to the process. It always comes down to this: how much can you let go of resistance to what is and completely surrender to let life flow through you? What I’ve learned in the process of birth, website building and daily living is that life doesn’t seem to care so much about your attachments and expectations. As a matter of fact, it seems to always find a way to destroy them so that your true essence and your presence has the opportunity to shine through. If there’s one word of advice I could give to anyone birthing a project or a baby, it would be: surrender. Trust that it will be completed and you will meet your baby in exactly the way you are supposed to. Anything else than surrender creates suffering.
How do you deal with your creative process? Have you noticed any of the things described above during project building or birthing a baby? Let me know in the comments!