by Susan O'Hara
Whatever Covid-19 has done to restrict us, we must not, as artists, let it stop us, control us or limit our creative natures. For all of time, human beings have created even- during war, famine, or when imprisoned. Adversity has been a great generator of creativity. Our minds keep creating and producing story through whatever medium we have at hand.
This pandemic is a new way in which we can stop and consider the gifts of talent we have been given. We need to create out of those gifts meaningful substance that will heal others. It is a well-known fact that stories heal. By healing others through our art, we also heal ourselves. Individuals and whole communities heal and thrive through their stories.
Our young children need stories. They grow by learning to speak out in story. Our Youthful Voices participants learn to appreciate their own ideas and talents as they begin to speak out and develop a sense of community. They raise their voices and remind adults to cherish where we came from. We were, after all, children too.
Beautiful butterflies lay their tiny eggs on the underside of leaves. They become hungry caterpillars who eat and eat, sometimes destroying lovely plants. They spin unsightly cocoons that eventually become beautiful butterflies. It’s a process.
We too are like a butterfly in the making. We make mistakes, stumble and fall. Our chrysalis isn't always pretty. We pick ourselves up and learn from our mistakes, failures and successes to build really great stories for others to hear. We might always look (or feel or think) our best, but we are works in process!
I wonder what great stories Covid-19 will inspire? Stories that will explain what we learned about ourselves? Were we frightened, or brave during this time? Did our time behind the mask strengthen us or turn us into a softer version of ourselves? Did we become afraid to stretch out and learn something new? Do we become bolder? Did we learn a bit of humility? Did we learn something life changing?
At Storyhub, we have seen how service to others helps people get through these difficult times. We have continued to help others with their stories and projects. We have grown and have made new friends. Those who truly have the passion to create and develop, continue doing so. It takes time and a team to build an artistic endeavor. Gather about you a team of dreamers with the talents to make things happen, put in your own best self, and create! Our circumstances will change, and you will have a new body of work to share.
So don't give up or give in. Have integrity and be your best self. Reach out to like-minded creatives, support your peers, and produce. In coming together as a community, we continue to create, and grow. Turn your isolation in to incubation!
Keep on the path and journey on! Your story is counting on you!
Susan O'Hara resides on the east coast of Florida. She has been practicing the art of storytelling for 23 years. Susan also loves to coach the youth in stories and loves Youthful Voices! Susan loves incorporating puppets in her storytelling. See them on YouTube Storyhub channel. You can contact her at StoryArtistry.net/contact-us.