When Your Masterpiece Sucks

Darling,

I’m so glad you’re here. I’ve been thinking a lot about you over the past few weeks. Settle in. Let's talk.

I need you to imagine, for a moment, that you have everything you want: Booming career, fulfilling relationships, shiny hair, rockin’ body, gorgeous family, lots of friends, financial abundance, and a generally flawless life. Does it fill you up? Does it feed the hunger that gnaws at the edges of your heart?

And what happens then, after you have everything you want? Are you done? Do you live out the rest of your days watching sunsets on adirondack chairs, like you’re living in a Cialis commercial? 

Or, darling, are you still hungry?

Does your body still ache for something else, something more, something true-er, real-er, bigger, better. 

You see, my love, it is the human condition to reach.

To look at a tool and say, “I can make this better.”

To ponder our lives and think, “I can live this better.”

We are makers, my love. And that is beautiful.

But here’s the catch (and it catches many of us): what if you’re making the wrong thing? 

What if you spend your life making your masterpiece, and at the end of all the days you step back and say, “What the hell? That’s not my masterpiece. I don’t even like that masterpiece. This is what I’ve been building?” 

What then?

We spend so much time reaching and building and blasting through glass ceilings, that we tend to lose sight of why we are doing all the work. And then, when we finally reach the thing we’ve been aching for, the silence that expands in the wake of all that building is cavernous. Deafening. Terrifying.

Because maybe, just maybe, we are dead inside. 
 

***


I need to tell you about the last few months of my life.

It began with a crisis of faith, as I started to question the masterpiece I’ve been making. Do I want to have this career? This relationship? This whole life trajectory? Is this what I want? I had no answers. My inner guide was silent, white noise instead of what was usually clear direction. I panicked. And darling, when I panic, I run.      

So I hopped on a plane to California. Actually, 2 planes—all the nonstop flights were sold out. 

And on the second flight, I met myself. Well, I met a version of myself 20 years in the future. Let’s call her Miranda, because I’ve always liked that name.

Miranda asked me where I was going and what I was doing, and I told her I was going on walkabout, to find my spirit. That I was questioning everything. That I’d recently gotten engaged, started a business, battled an episode of crushing depression, and that I was starting to feel pinned under a rock of my own making. 

I told her I was questioning the things that I wanted, and more specifically questioning whether I wanted them because they aligned with my spirit, or because they aligned with what I have been taught to want my whole life, she said, “Oh good! You’re doing exactly the right thing.”

And then she told me her story.

I should probably mention that Miranda is beautiful. She had—based on what I could see—my dream wardrobe, skin, car, apartment. Materially, she has everything I could ever want. A fabulous career. Respect and admiration. Love from her friends and family.

But the first thing she told me was, “I wish I had done what you’re doing. I wish I had traveled more and met people and asked questions. I wish I had focused more on love and less on career. I wish I had started a family. I wish I had asked myself what Itruly wanted. Given the chance, I would have lived the last 20 years of my life differently.” 

Her words broke my heart wide open. There was no sugar coating, just pure regret slicing through the air. It rattled me. Materially, Miranda had adorned her life with beauty and fun and friends and accomplishment, and spiritually she was empty. She looked me in the eyes and said, “Don’t do what I did."

I’ve rolled her words around in my head for the past 6 weeks. I’ve stepped back and looked at my masterpiece. I’ve walked and meditated and written and cried. I’ve gotten bolder and a little brighter. I’ve also gotten stung by a yellow jacket.

And then, I got out the white paint, and I painted over certain parts of my masterpiece that just weren’t working. 

I painted over resentment and guilt, scarcity and judgement, and the need to be right. There’s a good chance I’ll need to paint over a lot of this stuff again, but that’s fine. I’ve got lots of white paint, and no shortage of resilience.

And then I got to work. Over here at Marielle HQ, I’ve been busy building. There have been lots of late nights and early mornings.

I’ve signed a lease for a brand new Marielle HQ. I’ve had a birthday. I’ve fallen deeper in love with life,  my pets, my partner, and silk. 

There have been brilliant bursts of insight, waves of energy, and unstoppable excitement. Because, dear one, I’ve been building things for you. I’ve been creating an incredible course to help you shine with all the light that’s hidden inside you. 

Know this: with everything we do we are making our masterpiece. So, darling, I want you to be sure that the masterpiece you’ve been making is truly yours.

It’s okay if your masterpiece doesn’t look like anyone else’s—in fact that might be good.

Be unafraid of transformation. We are, after all, dynamic creatures made to create the future. Welcome possibility with open arms, and the biggest, most tender heart. And most of all, pay attention to your desire. It will show you the way home. 

 

With love and light, always,

Marielle