In elementary school, I was enamored with art.

In art class, I happily recreated Picasso’s self-portrait and then created my own self-portrait (see above and below). (This is the Picasso self-portrait I was recreating; not exactly a replica, but it was my work.)

I doodled in Mickey and Minnie coloring books, and went to the MOMA store with my grandma. (I still have the set of pastels she bought me during one of our stops.)

I fell in love with the arts when I was just itty bitty. Ballet, Broadway, art books. I still have dreams about learning pointe.

Like Joy said in her inspiring creativity post, the visual arts aren’t the only avenues to creativity.

They just happened to be mine.

And I loved them. I loved art supplies, and my Picasso drawings, and my poems.

But I started losing my connection to creativity as I got older. Gradually, somewhere between my adolescent angst and self-image struggles, it began dissipating.

I was involved in musical theater in high school, which I was passionate about. But I allowed my insecurities and stage fright to overwhelm and quiet that passion.

I continued to write and get giddy in museums and listen to Broadway (don’t judge; you know you love it), but I’d lost that sense of wonder within myself.

That’s it really. It was losing that sense of childlike wonder as I matured and other things got in the way.

Slowly, I feel like I’m getting it back now, as I’m learning more about myself, as I’m being kinder to myself and trying to let tension go.

As I’m figuring out what I love. What drives me. What gives me purpose.

I’m reading more about creativity. I’m trying to unravel my layers. I’m trying to take some thoughtful time for myself.

Like I said in my initial post on creativity, creativity is in our bones. It is in our hearts.

It is in the photos you take to document a silly smile, a fun family outing, a celebration, an anniversary, a favorite thing.

It’s even in your cereal.

It’s even in my amazingly amateur photography.

Creativity is curiosity. (I love this quote from Albert Einstein: “I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” It’s featured in my new favorite book Creative Is A Verb by Patti Digh.)

It’s wonder.

It’s the joy of learning. The joy of living.

It’s beauty rediscovered in the old and unearthed in the new.

It’s writing something that’s breathtakingly relatable. It’s playing with your kids in the park. It’s baking a batch of cookies.

It’s solving a math problem (something I, unfortunately, know very little about). It’s picking out flowers to give to a dear friend.

Creativity is having a feast.

Creativity is always there, within us; we just have to reconnect to what’s been hiding but never really lost.

What does creativity mean to you? Are you rediscovering your creativity? Where do you see creativity?

P.S., Check out Christie’s meditation on creativity on her new website, Abundant Self Care, to help spark a few ideas for your creativity posts or to enjoy a mid-day relaxation break. It’s soothing, thoughtful and fun!

If you’re writing a post or paragraph on creativity, don’t forget to email me by next Tuesday (18th). Email me at mtartakovsky at gmail dot com.

Thanks so much to everyone who’s participating in this month’s word and to everyone who’s reading!