Sunday, November 16, 2008


I decided to postpone Random Panic - number two until next time. Today I was helping Kate with her snow crystal science project, and I thought, "My God. Snowflakes are the most beautiful things on earth." So just for today, I think I will focus on the beautiful, and lovely. And I will remember the blessings, and not the panics.

Her project made me think that we are all, in a sense, exactly like human snowflakes. All beautiful, and not one is the same.

I have been asked to speak to a large group of students at the University. As I have been thinking about what to tell them, I have decided that I want them to remember that we are all born with certain gifts. Surely they know this, but many times I think we try to be another kind of snowflake because that's what our parents expect, or that is what we think makes more money, or we are shamed into thinking our snowflake is defective (Like that poor, little, imaginary warrior dude in Role Models). I want them to know that if they are in a major that they hate, that they can stop. It's never to late to start over. They need to allow their own snowflake to be exposed. Even if it seems unconventional.

I was the artsy little girl who slaved away for years in accounting, statistics, and business classes. I believed my parents, and bosses, and teachers when they said that design and art is not really a good idea. That I wouldn't make any money, and couldn't "go places." And so I spent many unhappy and unfulfilled years daydreaming storylines while selling real estate etc... Thank God I came to my senses before I was too old to dream :-)

I don't know what the point of this oddball-snowflake-inspired post is? But just to say that-- just like when you hear writing people say that no one else can write the book you will write, because there is only one you... I'd like to add that no one can do ANYTHING you were born to do, because you are an individual. And if you stay true to your own gifts and desires, you WILL be successful, no matter what. 'Cuz just like the ICE, you are one of a kind. Unique. And beautiful....



Hardygirl said...

Ahhh. So true. I hope those college students really take you to heart.

I was like you--always the "creative chick" in high school--writing for the literary journal and painting everything that didn't stand still. When I got to college (a liberal arts school--thank God), I resisted the pull to major in art until I had a mini epiphany, and I scrambled, took every art class I could, went to Parsons in the summers . . . and I majored in fine art.

Then, what did I do??? I went to law school. I know why I did this--my parents divorced when I was in my early teens, and I realized how important it is for a woman to be able to take care of herself and her family financially if life throws you a curve ball.

I'm just thankful to have a very supportive husband who encouraged me to chuck the law career (before I had children--which is when many woman lawyers quit the grind) and try to make it as an artist. And, now a writer.


Christy Raedeke said...

Ah. This post really talked me off the ledge of my own Random Panic today. Lovely and so true.

Irene Latham said...

Hi Katie AND Sarah Frances! The snowflake post reminds me of two bits of wisdom that I revisit on a daily basis: Be the Best YOU you can Be (this is especially helpful in the oh so competitive world of writers and artists, where are all striving, where we are all unique and deserving with our own special stories to tell, yet some folks get the glory and others don't) and a Dr. Seuss quote: "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." Words like those really help when you are pursuing a dream that may make no sense to anyone but you.
Anyhow, I loved seeing Sarah Frances the other day and hope to see Katie again very soon!

Katie said...

Hey guys!

SF, I love that backstory of your life.

Christy - glad to help out :-)

Irene - HI!!! I tried to facebook you yesterday and it didn't work? I'll try again. SO good to hear from you and thanks for the great quotes! I passed them on to my daughter :-)

Corey Schwartz said...

Excellent advice. So glad you finally followed your heart and pursued your dream of writing.

Corey Schwartz said...

P.S. If you've never read The Artist's Way, you might to pick up a copy. Its kind of a workbook that gives you exercises to foster your creativity and nourish your inner artist.

Katie said...

Corey, thanks for the book idea! And the encouragement!

Disco Mermaids said...

Thanks, Katie. Great post.



Graeme Stone said...

I loved this post. I also realize that I start every comment with a one-word exclamation-pointed word. But it's true, enthusiasm just bursts forth.
At first the snow-flake analogy sounds so banal, but it really, really is true. Each and invididual and each unique in his or her own way, and beautiful to boot. Hard to imagine billions of us all unique, but it's amazingly true.
And careers, and paths that lead to dead-ends. My parents (God bless 'em) were on for the practical push in college and I got a fairly useless Communications degree that was so generically appropriate it became appropriate for nothing special. Meanwhile the writing has endured for decades. My boyfriend is a painter and against all advice (and with no parental support) has pursued it into a career that sustains him. He's been invited to do book covers, a CD cover, has shown all over the states, and just got into Art Basil this year. He pursues his dream and lives it all the time.
Your post was so inspiring and so in tune with the groove I've been trying to dance to. And the Artist's Way was Corey Schwartz' mention and she's so right. No one can write the story that is within each of us...but us. So here's to unearthing dreams and living our truths.

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