The strange pull of what you really love.

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“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.
It will not lead you astray.” -Rumi

The 2014 World Cup changed our lives.

Nico started watching with Matt, peering over his shoulder on the couch, asking about various players. Which guy is the fastest? What team is the best? Is Messi the goodest? He started playing soccer constantly. Talking about it obsessively.

He started wearing shin guards every day to school.
He wore cleats to bed.
He didn’t want us to cut his hair.
He put on his Messi uniform every day even if it was filthy.
He instructed me to write a number in Sharpie on the back of every single shirt he owned to make them “soccer shirts.” Otherwise, he refused to wear them. (I totally obliged.)

Years ago I read a story about Alfred Steiglitz, the renowned photographer from the 1930’s who was married to Georgia O’Keefe. In the article there was a photograph of Steiglitz at maybe 4 or 5 years old. He had fashioned a necklace out of a photograph and wore it around his neck.

Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.

When I think of my life as a treasure hunt it makes a bit more sense- the way I am always feeling my way toward the light. The way there are people and colors and joys that are like sparks for me and I remind myself that it’s okay to not know exactly where I’m going. That I can get all the way home, even if my path is only lit a few feet in front of me.

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I’ve been painting lately. Little studies here and there. Strolls through the aisles of the art store. My heart skips a beat when I smell the oil paints and see those spectrums of color on the wall. The other day, I bought a big block of cold pressed watercolor paper and lots of paint – expensive, but I didn’t care. I lay all those tiny tubes of pigment on the counter with a hunger I haven’t felt in a long time. The way the bristles feel when they brush against my palm, the way the pigment bursts on the toothy paper like a shooting star with just a drop of water. It’s a kind of bliss for me, one that I forget is available as I opt for more practical things like laundry and email.

I write this as a kind of reminder to myself and also to note that there is something about color and paint and using my hands that has everything to do with where I am going.

What is the strange pull in your life?

I heard a great interview with Maria Bello yesterday on Fresh Air. She was on track to be a women’s rights attorney when she took an acting class. She knew instantly that was what she wanted to do. She went to her friend + mentor Father Ray Jackson in tears and said, “Father, I don’t know what to do. I thought I was supposed to be of service in this world; acting seems like such a selfish profession.”

And he said the words that would set her free: “Maria, you serve best by doing the things you love most.”

What have you always loved? 

 

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Hi, I’m Andrea

On this blog you’ll be learning with me how to use our voices, share our creative superpowers and live life in full color.

As an artist, photographer, life coach + mentor, I’m redefining what it means to be a SUPERHERO — ‘cause in my world, it’s got nothing to do with capes, spandex or sidekicks and everything to do with tenderness, intuition & baby steps of bravery.

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24 Comments

  1. Anna

    What an excellent question. I have been rolling it around too much lately. And I still don’t know. But I want to find out.

    Reply
  2. Rachel

    So beautiful. Trusting that strange pull of what we love is such a gift. Even as we don’t know what comes next, we can trust that walking towards that pull is where we need to be.

    Reply
  3. Tiffanie

    Wow. Thanks always for the reminder. This really hits home. ❤️

    Reply
  4. Tiffanie

    “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”
    – Howard Thurman

    This one has been guiding me lately. ❤️

    Reply
  5. belita

    It is so wonderful to receive your writing today, Andrea. Thank you so much for posting this. You are an inspiration. You & Jen taught me how to dare to dream, and I will always be grateful to you both for that gift. Thank you for reacquainting me with my dreams, the practice of listening to my heart and for reminding me that my dreams and my heart and all that I love are the most honest and wisest guides.

    Reply
  6. Barbara

    I have a huge pull to sell my house and move into the central city near our university and buy a small bungalow and create my new nest. I’ve been working months on both the selling and the buying parts. Each part is proving really difficult. I can’t buckle. This is all too important to me. I’m 75. Sometimes this just doesn’t make sense.

    Reply
  7. Andrea Scher

    So happy this is resonating for you guys! Big love to each of you.

    Reply
  8. Elisa Mikiten

    My favorite post ever.

    xo

    Reply
  9. michele

    Resonating. Thank you!

    Reply
  10. Mollie

    Perfect timing to see this post! As a kid I collected rubber stamps… and today I am a printmaker/artist. I still question my direction and struggle with guilt daily- but I would not be happy if I couldn’t create. Thanks Andrea for staying inspired! Xo

    Reply
  11. debbie in alaska

    Dance. I just started at the age of 41. Ballet, Tap, Jazz. I am a smitten kitten. I practice every day. I dance in the kitchen while waiting for my food to cook. I run through routines in my head before I fall asleep. It’s exepnsive. I don’t care. It brings me so much joy. A small part of me wishes I had the chance to start as a child — back when I dreamed of being a Solid Gold dancer … I think I would have been great. But better late than never.

    Reply
  12. vickiO

    Beautiful, inspiring post! And such a great reminder. It really made me smile and feel connected to my little girl inside❤️ Thank you!

    Reply
  13. lynne

    Your insights and observations always sit so deeply in my soul. Thank you for being you.

    Reply
  14. Elizabeth

    Love this. Because yes. Things always make sense in retrospect, but I like things to make sense in the moment! (On a related note, who knew that my serious love of coffee shops & latte art would lead to me becoming a part-time barista. Ha. I did not see that one coming at all!)

    Reply
  15. Jen

    Photography. School is out and the last two days I’ve made time to shoot. And as stressful as the last week has been, as stressful as it will be, for awhile it all fades away. Writing comes a close second but really – it’s photography.

    Reply
  16. Karen

    OH i love this!!!!!! What perfect timing for me. I have been feeling pulls, not knowing what to do with them… i really can’t even articulate, but i tear up every time i walk into an art studio.

    Reply
  17. gracy

    Yes Andrea, thank you! I felt so lost for years about how to live out my passion. I felt like my main talents were hanging with awesome women, having a deep conversation over a cup a tea and enjoying my life. I started a coaching business based on female support, self care and real life balance and it’s grown so much just in one year. You’re such an awesome role model for living out your passions–it’s awesome you can recognize that in your boys too! When I was 11, I found this funny book about ayurvedic lifestyle by 70’s chic Vidal Sasson and read it a bunch of times. It’s funny how it does start so early! Our spirits are so wise, as are you. Much love, Gracy

    Reply
  18. Kathleen

    Andrea-
    You resonate the melody of lives…in just a few words…you crack it open and expose real truths for yourself and for all of us…you will paint if it calls you…but the reality of all of this …is that you create beautiful paintings in your thoughts and your truths…and you make so many of us say..yes-what is my love? What am I pulled to right now–what is keeping me from what I love? I know the answer to that question…and I know that my resistance and my delay will never go away unless I am confronted repeatedly with the truth…thank you for the truth… you are amanzingly beautifull~
    Kathleen

    Reply
  19. Kathleen

    Andrea-
    You resonate the melody of lives…in just a few words…you crack it open and expose real truths for yourself and for all of us…you will paint if it calls you…but the reality of all of this …is that you create beautiful paintings in your thoughts and your truths…and you make so many of us say..yes-what is my love? What am I pulled to right now–what is keeping me from what I love? I know the answer to that question…and I know that my resistance and my delay will never go away unless I am confronted repeatedly with the truth…thank you for the truth… you are amazingly beauti~full~
    Kathleen

    Reply
  20. Kathleen

    sorry I said it twice~ but maybe that was necessary…xxo

    Reply
  21. Marya

    This post really resonated with me (enough to copy that Father Jackson quote to straight into my journal.). Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
  22. Lisa

    I nearly flipped out when I read this. Would you believe I’m having this exact same intense, almost intense 13 year old love affair/ obsession with watercolor, too? Yep, I just bought a bunch of daniel smith and m grahams and I’m figuring it out too, finding inspiring artists. .. and I feel so full of life . . and this all just happened when I wanted to find a portable art medium. I had never liked or been interested in watercolors, but when I found some inspiring artists, I became hooked!

    Still shocked that someone else is having this same exact experience at the same time as I am. Also shocked because I don’t check your blog regularly, but I did tonight.

    I’m going to take that as a good sign for both of us to follow our joy. 🙂

    Reply
  23. Leah

    This happened for me–I wasn’t even trying or looking for it. I had finally settled into family life, which was the one thing I always *knew* I wanted for myself, and once that piece was in place, it was like the true calling was waiting all along, and I’ve pursued it aggressively and taken risks in a way I have absolutely never done with anything in the professional/creative realm ever before. It’s a wild trip and it’s so great.

    Reply
  24. oprol evorter

    I just couldn’t depart your website before suggesting that I really enjoyed the standard info a person provide for your visitors? Is gonna be back often to check up on new posts

    Reply

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