When I was 11 years old, I survived a heavy car crash. A car, driving 120 km/h, drove on the back of my bicycle. There were rumors that I would have been dead, that one leg was amputated or that I’d been paralyzed in my legs. Fortunately I survived, with a heavy concussion and a flesh-wound on my right leg. After 6 weeks hospital I returned home, after half a year I was sporting again. In hospital at 11 years old, I started to think about life and death, about the meaning of life.
That’s also when I started to feel special. Why else would I have survived the accident? It was my way to look for meaning for this accident, for the pain. Feeling-special also put quite some pressure on me. I had to accomplish something big; I had to earn the right to have survived the accident. It had to be something really big, like becoming the first female pope. The pressure was so big, that I couldn’t deal with it and escaped by reading books. The pressure of having to accomplish something very special, blocked me in living and in being creative. Reading made me feel special again without the pressure, so I preferred to read a book over playing with friends.
I know some artists struck in the same kind of vicious circle: they feel special by their art and the admiration of their fans, at the same time they doubt if they can ever deliver, they doubt if they are worth the admiration. I will not mention any names here, but I’m sure you know what I mean. They don’t trust their own art and often they choose for drugs or alcohol as a way to escape.
Some years ago I started to celebrate the day of the accident as Hilde-Is-Alive-Feast. In the first years it was very emotional and very ambiguous. Though I felt less special by destiny, the pressure to accomplish also diminished. I started to appreciate myself much more as how and who I am. And I started to accomplish much more than before!
Escape is always temporary, it’s never the solution. If you know this contradicting feelings and are looking for a way out of it, it starts with accepting yourself as who you are, right here, right now. There are methods to help with it, think about yoga and mindfulness, J. Cameron’s 12-week program to get in touch with your inner creative source (The Artist’s Way), or the five aspects of centered leadership of J. Barsh. I’m experienced in these methods and can accompany you. Just ask for information. Thanks.