That would be the one word that describes a part of my personality. Not that I come to each moment in robust pride and over exaggerated self-confidence, but something in me stays true to who I am deep within, regardless of the expectations of others. Especially when it comes to my creative nature.
My father had a hard time accepting my creativity because, of course, all artists are starving...right? And the last thing a parent wants is a dependent child who puts their art above being a self sufficient contributor of society. My mother was the compassionate supporter and did her best to balance the frustration of my paternal caretaker. Almost to the point of codependency. While I faced one challenge after another, I stayed true to the creative person inside of me all the while trying to be a responsible adult for everyone around me.
Creativity became my outlet of self-discovery. No matter the emotion or issue, I would write, sing, dance, act, film or compose music to process my emotions. It was a way for me to take my thoughts and feelings outside of myself and work my way logically around the situation before putting it back in my head. The amazing thing about this process of using creativity to sort out the mysteries of life is how many people relate to the piece created.
Being a creative person facing tragedy and severe loss can propel you into turning around your own circumstances through that creativity. According to an article written in the Huffington Post:
"An emerging field of psychology called post-traumatic growth is suggesting that many people are able to use their hardships and early-life trauma for substantial creative growth. Specifically, researchers have found that trauma can help people to grow in the areas of interpersonal relationships, spirituality, appreciation of life, personal strength, and — most importantly for creativity — seeing new possibilities in life."
Some people have not understood this creative process of figuring out life. I had a grief counselor tell me that I had exacerbated the grief process by writing and filming A Bit of Forever. On the contrary. I prepared myself mentally, emotionally and physically for the journey I had perceived was coming. And when that time and moment came, my mind was set that tomorrow would be a better day than today. That film has touched many lives both through the making and viewing of it.
Tenacity was the beginning of my journey into writing, design, music and filmmaking.
So I encourage you, continue in your creative efforts of self discovery and expression. It may just change your perspective all the while touching lives of all those around you.