"What constitutes play is not the activity itself but the motivating force behind it. Is it self-chosen, as opposed to externally imposed? Is it naturally engaging? Does it create a sense of flow where the process of the activity is more important than the end result? If yes, then it’s play. For me that might be traipsing around in the woods with my camera, or spreading paint on a canvas. For my husband that might be fingering scales on his guitar. Play has been shown to have many benefits for adults as well, such as increased health and decreased levels of stress."
In that vein, one way that I've been playing lately, both by myself and with the girls when they are interested, is through art journaling. We've done some of the free sessions offered by Woman Unleashed Online Retreat . All of the videos are available through the end of July. I'll share here some of my doodles and creations inspired by the sessions.
from the Opening Session
with Amber Kuileimailani Bonnici
Ayla joined me for a session. We laid out a selection of basic art supplies. At one point Ayla decided that we also needed maracas and a handful of clovers.
Ayla's creation above and mine below
from the Muse Manifesta session
with Shiloh Sophia
from the Sacred Self Care session
with Amy Ahlers
Ayla's spray ink creation
my spray ink creation
from the Lightness of Mind session
with Tamara Laporte
Sylvia's spray ink creations using the face-drawing info
from Shiloh Sophia
more doodling with watercolor added
my inner critic and inner child
from Healing Your Not Enoughness Ritual
with Dr. Mary Pritchard
My inner critic looked so very worried. It helped me understand her better.
My inner child was (and still is) wild, messy, and free.
from the Going Deep to Tell Your Story session
with Devorah Spilman
Let Your Heart Light Shine
Camille's creation above and mine below
from the Mandala Magic session
by Flora Bowley
I'll end this post by copying out some of the scribblings in my journal:
You do not need to be an "artist" to create meaningful beauty.
You do not need to be a "swimmer" to let yourself glide through the cool water.
You do not need to be a "writer" to let yourself share your words with the world.
You do not need to be a "dancer" or "athlete" to move your body energetically.
You do not need to be one of the "brave ones" to move past your fears.
You do not need permission to allow yourself to play and feel joy.
You do not need a PhD to work towards healing, both in your body and in your community.
Begin where you are.