One of the biggest lessons that I have learned from working with Amanda on the Long Way Home Magazine is that we all deal with self-doubt. As creatives, it seems to be part of the package. We want to create on one hand and on the other we question our ability. We question our right to achieve and we wait for someone to tap us on the shoulder and say, " Hey! You don't belong here".
I see this in different forms from the artists who contribute to our magazine and our blog. They question their ability to write. They question their self-portraits. They question the images they have submitted. We willingly hold their hands and encourage them to take the next step. We know this self doubt in our own work and we deal with each concern with honesty. It can be a roller coaster ride of emotions for each issue.
Yet in the end, we have a magazine with articles that portray a small part of the artists story. Each article , in my humble opinion, is filled with beautiful words and stunning images. We then send out the magazine and this is the best part. The reactions we receive always fills me with joy. For many, this is a goal on their journey as an Artist. This is a tick against the goal to be published. They celebrate this achievement and we celebrate with them. I have personally let out "woohoos" and danced in my chair as I celebrate for another artist. I have felt elation when they share their story of success and the mountain they climbed to reached it with us. I have shed tears and felt goosebumps.
I realized that this feeling of celebrating the success of another artist is wonderful. It is addictive and I happy dance in the kitchen as I read posts and comments on their page. I never expected to feel this joy when we started but I am happy to receive it. I enjoy my own success and love to receive recognition but sharing this joy with another artist is a gift. Sharing our journey, both the high and lows, is vulnerable but I feel connected to our community when we share it with like minded people. I hope one day that I get to meet some of these beautiful artists, and I have my fingers crossed for this day. Until then, I will continue to happy dance in my kitchen and shout "Woohoo!".