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Beginning Again

This too is a work in progress. This was the title of the very first blog I created almost a decade ago.  Over the years I've had a couple blogs, been on a few design teams, made YouTube videos and ran a couple of Facebook groups.
Recently I decided to delete my entire online presence.  Every blog post and YouTube video gone.  I closed my art group and shutdown my Facebook like page.  I've narrowed my friends list down from 190 friends on Facebook to 23.  These 23 people are the ones I actually interact with online.  I have deleted all but 2 of my social media accounts.
Why, you might ask? I needed to pare down, unplug, and de stress.  2016 has taught me alot of things thus far.  The biggest thing that I have learned is that I am not the same person I used to be.  I am truly beginning again.  That is why I have come back to this place.  The place where I started my online art journey, the place where I fell in love with it all.
Creating has always been a form of therapy for me.  No matter what I've had happen in my life, creating has always helped me.  It's hard for me to explain the effect that smearing paint into an art journal or making some decoration for my house has.  But for me it works.
Keeping up with an online presence in the art community has always been a challenge for me.  For a long time it was fun, I loved the challenge.  As things in my life that were beyond my control started to consume every minute of my day it became more difficult.  After the death of my husband and entering a new relationship it became even harder to keep up.  I knew I had changed.  I am not the same person I was when 2016 began.  Not even close.  It has taken me over 9 months to even really feel like blogging again.  Sure I have written a few posts this year, but they were mostly about my grief and sorrow of my husband passing and the challenges I face as a widow at almost 40.  I know I will always grieve his death, but I do not want to be stuck in that place of sorrow.  I feel like I need to move forward towards happiness, instead of staying in that funk I've been in for years.
In 6 days I will be 40.  Although I am not where I wanted to be in life at this point and find myself starting a whole new adventure that is so different from anything I have ever known.  When I was younger I always thought that 40 was old.  Now I am realizing that old hasn't even begin yet and is purely a state of mind.  I have also realized just how much life that I have left to live.  I am bound and determined to make my life the best I can.  All of the struggles along the way are merely speed bumps, learning experiences.
There have been so many times this year when giving up would have been the easiest thing to do.  There have been times when I have wholeheartedly wanted nothing more than to find a rock to climb under.  The only problem with this train of thought is that I don't give up, ever.  I am not programmed to and wouldn't even know what that would look like.  I was raised to be strong, I was raised to be a survivor, a warrior woman that can withstand any storm.
I was raised by parents who have survived so much in life, who don't give up, who have loved me unconditionally since the day I was born.  I am very blessed to have my parents and to have been raised by them.  They have taught me more than I think they even realize.  I would not be who I am without them.
As I begin again, I am excited to share my journey.  I am excited to be back here where it all began.  I am excited for the new adventures that lie in front of me.

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