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Ready, Set.....

by Kate Ashforth about a year ago in Teenage years
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Almost fullfilled

I was late to the party of self-confidence. You see, being bullied by my peers from primary school onwards, wore away at my ability to understand my worth. I was told I was talented; a very artistic person. Gregarious, verbose and gifted at many things. This was all fine and good, but the blinds were down and dark clouds filled my brain. Negative self-talk consumed me.

One thing I became exceptional at was masking any problems to the outside world. I was the happy kid. I was the kid that didn't complain and helped others feel warm and fuzzy about themselves. At the time, an awareness of the practice of bullying wasn't in my vocabulary as growing up in the 70's and 80's, you just put up with the mean girls. You took it. You lived with it. You kept quiet, even though deep inside, you knew something wasn't right.

Plodding along, I progressed through life knowing I wasn't quite hitting the mark. I got through. Drawing upon a disappearing memory of a shiny, young being with admired capabilities I hoped that magically, success would materialise. Someone would discover my talents. I created acceptable art; sometimes art that was notable to the few. Still, I knew that I was capable of achieving more. The problem was, I didn't know how to go about it. The seed of fear growing inside me was sprouting roots all of the time. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of failing. Fear of not being lovable. Fear of being nothing. A connection to the source of this debilitation hadn't materialised. The person that I always was, the happy, creative kid, lived inside me somewhere- I just couldn't access it.

University was a chore. Life after uni was arduous and confusing. I was in a little boat on choppy seas without a rudder, choosing to be on this directionless journey just the same. My lack of self-awareness was astounding. Wildly unhappy and discontent, I turned to journal writing an poetry and creating any type of art, in my moments of despair. Despair. A term I hate to use, and admit to. Making many mistakes, life errors and placing myself in emotionally perilous situations, I began to learn how to be. Creating art helped me to flicker of satisfaction. A shedding occurred. A metamorphosis. I kept going. I kept creating. I learnt how to breathe. I penned how to draw books, taught art, illustrated, crafted, wrote poetry, short stories, made jewelery, travelled and recorded my life.

At 51 years of age I came to the realisation that I have arrived. My place is one of knowing. I know who I am. Unpacking the past and making peace with it, I am aware that the younger me was hamstrung by circumstance, by people that chose to crush my sole to satisfy themselves A purple patch found me whilst living in Thailand. Time was my friend. Space and beauty my inspiration. I brought this back with me as a gift. A treasure discovered. I polish it with a smile whilst practising my craft. My creative understanding is alight and I am in tune to my artistry. My inner voice is speaking to me and I can call upon it at random. I can do this. My past drives me into the future. Wiser, I use experience as my fuel.

Never in doubt, I propel forward, not concerning myself with lost time. My creative evolution is at its peak. Self-belief is present. To fully realise my potential I want growth and desire progress, so I can continue to show the world what I am capable of.

Teenage years

About the author

Kate Ashforth

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