All posts filed under: Read

How to Keep On

Living a Creative Life Maryn & Darrée  Darrée: When I’m teaching all the time, I struggle to make space for my creative hobbies…and when I’m creating all the time, I wonder if I’m really contributing to society. Even though I know better, I find myself weighed down by the narrative that says doctors and teachers are contributing members of society, while artists and musicians are not. I mean, if you tell a stranger that you’re a teacher, people respect that. But when you tell them you’re an artist, they quickly mask their scorn for you with an “Ohhh, that must be nice…” or “I wish I had the time to be creative all day.” An art degree and 32 years later, I am still struggling to justify that being an artist is an okay way to spend my life. I’m on my way to carving out a path that is mine, but the voice inside (and outside) telling me that who I am is not okay, still reigns. Until I learn how to quiet that voice, I think I will always struggle with …

What Comes Next?

Metastate began when we realized we had been ignoring our creative selves for a long time. We started connecting with people who found the courage to listen to their hearts and take a different path than the one they were on. We shared their stories, started to rewrite our own, and hopefully sparked a small change inside of you. Over a year later, we’re asking ourselves what parts of our story need to be scrapped and edited to move us toward the kind of ending we really want. The hardest part is giving ourselves the permission to follow our gut when we spend most of our days pulled in different directions – work, bills, relationships, friends. It’s easy to find ourselves in a kind of holding pattern, succumbing to the demands around us and losing the momentum and sense of purpose we once had. This next chapter is about tipping the scales back and making an effort to live each day guided by our core instead of the expectations of others. It’s a continual process and we need to be reminded of …

Discover Yourself

Finding a New Normal Cheryl – Honolulu, HI Metastate: You recently made some life changing discoveries about your past. What led you to these revelations and can you tell us a little about your journey? Cheryl: Almost 2 years ago I discovered I was transgender. Although I have always felt that I was a girl and later a woman, I have spent a lifetime trying to deny these feelings. The denial has resulted in a lifetime of depression, unhappiness and loneliness. But I could never link my depression with my true feelings of gender. Then, two years ago, I had a chance encounter with a former friend, Daniella. Daniella is transgender and I asked her about her life. The more she talked about herself, the more I felt she was talking about me. I told her that I thought I might also be transgender, but I was unsure. (The truth is, I did not want to be – anything but that!) She gave me an estrogen patch and thought it might be helpful to try it. …

Where Do I Belong?

Metastate is about honoring each other’s stories, no matter how different, and creating a more complete picture of our hopes, our fears, our dreams. We’ll share our conversations here and invite you to add your voices to the discussion. Pull up a chair and join us as we recount the stories and lessons of our lives… Maryn:  I’m curious, have you ever felt like you were part of a community? Surrounded by people who were really your kind of people? Darree:  I’ve been thinking about this question since last night and I want to say yes, but to be honest, I’ve never really felt like I was understood. Being understood is a huge part of whether I feel connected to something or not. Even when people have nodded to my opinions, interests, choices and questions, I always had a feeling that they were secretly thinking, “She’s weird.”  Maryn:  I know what you mean. I have been a part of some groups where I felt like I could “play along.” I had fun and shared certain things about myself, but as you say, I didn’t feel …

Having it All

Motherhood and a Dream Renewed Eden – 40, Washington, D.C. Metastate:  Have you ever felt as though you were living up to expectations that were not your own? Eden:  Everyone has an opinion about my life, especially family. I was pushed to keep going back to school to obtain degrees, whether it helped me to do what I wanted or not.  I eventually distanced myself from my family and community because none of them thought I could succeed. Even today, they are surprised by my success. Metastate:  Was there a time when you began to question their expectations? Eden:  I always questioned people’s expectations of me whether good or bad. My voice may not have been big or strong, but I protested in my own way. I rebelled against what others felt my life should look like.  Metastate:  Do you remember the moment when you began to live life on your own terms? Eden:  Once I moved to Washington, D.C. it was clear that I was taking steps to be my own person. Even moving to New York for graduate school; these were all decisions I made without the support of my parents. I was taking better care of myself and developed …

Follow Your Heart

 Change Your Mind and Your Heart will Follow Neema – 31, Woodbury, Connecticut Metastate:  Did you have a vision for yourself growing up?  Neema:  I had a great imagination, curiosity and sense of adventure, so whenever I met someone who did something that I found fascinating, I wanted to do it.  Metastate:  What advice would you give to your younger self?  Neema:  I would say, “Listen to your intuition, it will never fail you” or in the wise words of Esther & Jerry Hicks from The Law of Attraction, “The more you look to others for their guidance, the more removed you are from your own wise counsel.”  Metastate:  You recently made some big discoveries about your past. Can you tell us about that experience?  Neema:  I just had a very honest moment of reflection that caused me to question everything I knew. It began when I was laid off and the trajectory of my life changed. I didn’t realize how much of my identity was attached to a job description. In college I thought I would graduate, get an amazing job, and everything would be …

Finding the Call

Healing & Pursuing the Call Angela – 32, Brooklyn, NY Metastate:  Did you have a vision for yourself growing up?  Angela:  As a young person, I didn’t have a plan for the future. I had no idea what was in store for me. Metastate:  What advice would you give to your younger self?  Angela:  I’d tell her not to be afraid to express herself creatively. I’d tell her to speak up and let her voice be heard. I’d tell her that she is just fine the way she is.  Metastate:  You recently made some big discoveries about your past. Can you tell us about that experience?  Angela:  Through a lot of reflection (and some good therapy) I’ve worked out some issues from my childhood. My parents did not work well together. They were incompatible in many ways. My dad followed his father’s example in dealing with marital conflict. He was abusive. My mom stayed with him “for the sake of the children.” I’ve been led to revelations about my past and it has been wonderful to examine them in a completely …

Something to Prove

Becoming an Adult & Having Something to Prove Connor – 24, Pacifica, CA Metastate:  What comes to mind when you hear the words “American Dream”?  Connor:  Honestly, not much. The American Dream is more relevant for past generations. Kids these days live in an already discovered world. There’s not that same danger of venturing into the unknown that inspires huge leaps of faith. But, there are remnants of it still in existence. That part of the dream — working your tail off to get what you want — is still here.  Metastate:  Was there a particular experience or individual that had an impact on you? Connor:  My fraternity brother in college known for his drunken rants and aggressiveness told me one night that I wasn’t investing in myself. At the time, he was right. From that moment on, I stopped fooling around and started looking seriously at my future. Metastate:  When was the last time you made a change?  Connor:   I made a change simply to become better. Every morning I wake up and talk to my higher powers. I’m not sure …