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Fostering Creation: An Introduction

Welcome to the Fostering Creation blog!

I’m so excited to have you along.

This blog serves as a space for me to share my writing, my voice with an active audience. This is a workshop space for me to create new stories, share old stories, and perhaps branch out to share other things that inspire me and my writing work.

If my audience is not so active and doesn’t have anything to say that’s okay. We’ll just watch the stories unfold together and see what comes from Fostering Creation.

Thank you in advance for being part of this. I hope you enjoy!

Barbara Foster

New Segment: Did You Know?

For over a decade I have been trying to understand myself and purge all that does not belong to me. This blog became my saving grace. I started this blog September 2019 just after I graduated from college. It was a place that allowed me to process myself, but also safely share what I observed in the world and my creative writing ability. I have been grateful for the small following on this blog that has allowed me to be myself, and write what Divine Inspiration encouraged me to write. Now that I am becoming clearer in who I am as a person and as a writer, this blog will now offer new content.

Perhaps some of the old kind of writing might weave itself through this blog, but I’m going to try something new. Each week I will be doing a piece called “Did You Know?” Each one will feature a different person that I will do research on and write about them in my own words. Many of these people that I will be researching are ones that I have quoted on this blog. Such as, Glennon Doyle, Maya Angelou, Marianne Williamson, Kim McMillen, Rumi, Rainer Maria Rilke, Elia Kazan and many more! I look forward to bringing this new segment to the Fostering Creation Blog!

An Actor’s Vow by Elia Kazan

I will take my rightful place on stage and I will be myself.

I am not a cosmic orphan.

I have no reason to be timid.

I will respond as I feel; awkwardly, vulgarly, but respond.

I will have my throat open,

I will have my heart open,

I will be vulnerable.

I may have anything or everything

the world has to offer, but the thing

I need most, and want most,

is to be myself.

I will admit rejection, admit pain,

admit frustration, admit even pettiness,

admit shame, admit outrage,

admit anything and everything

that happens to me.

The best and most human parts of me

are those I have inhabited

and hidden from the world.

I will work on it.

I will raise my voice.

I will be heard.

The Call of the Soul

For decades I have been searching the corners of my mind and looking through every outside source to figure out how to make all the pieces of my life work in such a way that would be pleasing to the rest of the world. I have tried to do this with myself too. How do I become someone that everyone wants? How can I make my heart beat in such a way that others will understand? How can I make my body move at a pace that is in rhythm with the pace of the world and that looks stunning at the same time? Is there a way to avoid looking clunky, awkward and strange? How can I get all of the important adult tasks done and still allow my soul to breathe? How do I let my soul have it’s time to express itself while so many other things are calling for my attention?

The world gave me an answer to the latter a long time ago. The answer was “It cannot be done.” It is impossible to do all the creative things and practice adulthood at the same time. The world seemed to scream at me, “It’s all or nothing!” So, my soul just burrowed under a pile of unfinished stories, half painted drawings, and many burned hopes. It was dark, cold, and full of ashes. My soul lives there still.

I continue to search and research, and dig to find out how to fit into the lightning speed of the world? How do I make myself operate the way so many have asked me to operate or the way I’ve observed so many operating?

It’s hard to tell if my life is really mine. Is my life mine? Or does my life belong to the world to manipulate it and me forever and always?

The moment you open your mouth to tell me who I should be, how I should be, offer a suggestion, a well-intention piece of advice or any other comment regarding me and my life, I have already thought it through. I have felt all the nuances of the possibilities and felt my way into each situation. I have mentally scoured and researched all the various ways to get the thing I need, create something in an affordable way, make something happen, feel better about myself in the world or what have you. I am living the life I must breathe into and walk through the best I can. And I’m doing it every day. So please, world, either take time to see me or give me space. Dear world, you have to fucking slow down because people’s minds are close to bursting. People’s hearts and bodies are begging for love and attention. And people’s souls are slowly dying.

For decades people’s souls have begged and died for freedom. When will my soul fly free? When will we all get to feel like free souls? Inquiring minds want to know. Exhausted bodies want to be tenderly cared for. Desperate hearts want to feel into themselves and just be.

“But it’s dark down here”, My soul observes, “Alive, alive, alive! I just want to feel alive, rested and well…but here I sit in this cold place. There’s no one to care for me, except myself. The world sends out so many mixed messages that it’s hard to filter through them on your own. It’s hard to let the things people say roll off your back the way water rolls off the back of a duck. It’s hard to release and let yourself be completely in a world that has so many opinions, judgments, and unhealed heartbreaks of their own. Somehow there is not enough time in the day to come together and let each other be. It’s no mystery why many are always apologizing for what they do, and others are going insane. And before you open your mouth to say, “Yeah, that’s tough.” or “Well, that’s life.” or “Welcome to the world.” or “Yeah, well, it’s a cold world out there.” I implore you to just think about it. Sit with yourself. What about yourself needs healing or improvement? What about yourself or in your life do you need help with? Have you ever asked for help? Have you ever asked for help but felt like a burden to the other the whole time they were offering their help? Have you ever wanted to ask for help but felt too embarrassed to ask, so you never did? How many times was that successful? Did you feel good after doing it yourself? Or were you just tired as you thought about how nice it would be to have someone support you in the endeavor? Just think about it…” My soul waits patiently for attention.

Our souls wait on the edge of their cold cages, but healing needs to happen individually first. Sit with it. A little healing for one person brings healing and redemption to mankind.

Quote from Untamed

“When I think about my human experience, what honest people have told me about their human experiences, and the experiences of every historical and contemporary human being I’ve ever studied, we all seem to function in the exact same way:

We hurt people, and we are hurt by people. We feel left out, envious, not good enough, sick, and tired. We have unrealized dreams and deep regrets. We are certain that we were meant for more and that we don’t even deserve what we have. We feel ecstatic and then numb. We wish our parents had done better by us. We wish we could do better by our children. We betray and we are betrayed. We lie and we are lied to. We say good-bye to animals, to places, to people we cannot live without. We are so afraid of dying. Also: of living. We have fallen in love and out of love, and people have fallen in love and out of love with us. We wonder if what happened to us that night will mean we can never be touched again without fear. We live with rage bubbling. We are sweaty, bloated, gassy, oily. We love our children, we long for children, we do not want children. We are at war with our bodies, our minds, our souls. We are at war with one another. We wish we had said all those things while they were still here. They’re still here, and we’re still not saying those things. We know we won’t. We don’t understand ourselves. We don’t understand why we hurt those we love. We want to be forgiven. We cannot forgive. We don’t understand God. We believe. We absolutely do not believe. We are lonely. We want to be left alone. We want to belong. We want to be loved. We want to be loved. We want to be loved.

If this is our shared human experience, where did we get the idea that there is some other, better, more perfect, unbroken way to be human? Where is the human being who is functioning “correctly,“ against whom we are all judging our performances? Who is she? Where is she? What is her life if it is not these things?

I got free the moment I realized that my problem isn’t that I am not a good enough human; my problem is that I’m not a good enough ghost. Since I don’t have to be a ghost, I don’t have a problem.

If you are uncomfortable – in deep pain, angry, yearning, confused – you don’t have a problem, you have a life. Being human is not hard because you’re doing it wrong, it’s hard because you’re doing it right. You will never change the fact that being human is hard, so you must change your idea that it was ever supposed to be easy.”

-Glennon Doyle, author of Untamed

In the Process of Being

I am learning to live by myself. I am learning to live by myself for myself. This is hard. This is very hard in a world that is littered with overstimulation. This overstimulated world moves at a pace that is faster than the human heart can beat.

I am learning to breathe. I am learning to breathe by myself. I am learning to breathe by myself for myself. This is hard. This is very hard to do in a world that is littered with overstimulation and moving at a heart bursting pace.

Decades of heart racing social interactions, oxygen sucking schedules, and unrealistic success standards made me fade…very fast. My heart inflated and stayed inflated. It was always  just on the edge of bursting. My lungs cinched themselves shut, and my mind went fuzzy. I felt everything. I felt too much. I forgot how to think for myself, I forgot how to speak for myself and among all the too muchness of the world I held my breath. My body was running on nothing but observation and impulses. Catch and react. My eyes would see a behavior. My ears would hear a tone of voice and the two outside sources would jumpstart a gut impulse. Catch and react. I was always racing, always hoping, always trying to be like what I thought I saw from the outside world, but there was always an intense sting as I fell short every day. Catch, react, and push back.  

I wanted to feel like I was enough.  I wanted to be enough. Although just being seemed to make someone not enough of one thing or another. The world wouldn’t allow one to just be. So I didn’t allow myself to be, either. This forced me to attach myself to something outside of myself and I just tried to be that one thing. So my fuzzy mind picked the character called “Good Girl”. Then for over 20 years every piece of me rehearsed the role of “Good Girl”. Though I felt I was falling short in this role it seemed easier than to fall short being myself. Through all the trying to move at a heart bursting pace in an oxygen sucking world it’s no wonder I fell short trying to be a good girl. I was not myself. I lost myself.

After decades of not breathing or living for myself I am coming to and snapping out of my daze. I am allowing the shock of the world to clear. I am letting old ideas of success fade. Then I can breathe a little easier. Then I can breathe for myself and not for the world. Turns out I have never been able to breathe for the world. That’s too much air for one person to take on. I am only one person. I can only breathe for myself.

As I learn to breathe for myself then I can live for myself. Once I am able to live for myself nothing about me can be cinched, fuzzy, or close to bursting. No more trying to be a good girl. No more forgetting how to be. I’ll just get to be…

I will be enough. For now, I’m in the process of strike. I’ll be under construction for a while. I’m in the school of unlearning. This is very hard, but this is very exciting…

And as I venture through this process, every moment I am learning that I am enough… right now.