A Different Kind Of Celebration

cupcake 2Three years ago this day, two passionate, excited, naïve bloggers propelled into cyberspace a project they had dreamed of since their most serendipitous first interactions together online.

The bloggers were, of course, yours truly and my partner in crime, Tallulah “Lulu” Stark.  The project was what you see here, A Canvas Of The Minds.

I don’t think either of us had a clue of what it would eventually become, which was key.  We had ideas and hopes and dreams, but I’ll tell you all now that I never expected then to be where we — and I — are now.  I think a little blind naïveté is just what we need sometimes.

I wanted very much to write this year’s “birthday” post — I really do feel more like Canvas is a child I have had the privilege of helping to nurture and raise, so to me words like “blogoversary” or “anniversary” just haven’t the proper fit that “birthday” does — back to the point, I wanted so much to write about all of the amazing people who have and do write here with me, past and present, and what I have learned from them.  I truly have learned so much.

But then life happened, as it has a way of doing.  Right now I’m in a tumult — my life is honestly an absolute tempest, to get down to it.  As I alluded to in my most recent post, there are things going on both around and within me over which I have little to no control.  The last straw was a migraine as I sat to try to write this earlier.  The deadline was drawing near, and I couldn’t move without feeling like I wanted to die.

cupcake 3And that’s when I realized what I have really, perhaps, finally learned after 34 years of life and three years of this gig.

I learned to have mercy for myself.  To treat myself with kindness, as my wonderful co-authors (and readers, and the blogging community I have been so fortunate to be a part of) have always treated me, and encouraged me to apply to myself.  I finally let go and understood that the sky was not falling, Chicken Little.  No birthday post need go out at all.

I have known for a good long while that I was the only one who would really feel like I had failed in some sacred duty if I did not get something written.  I know the rest of the world wouldn’t even have noticed, but I set standards and metrics for myself so exceptionally high as to be quite absurd, when observed from a distance.

In any case, the migraine quelled just enough for me to pound this out.  I truly don’t know but that it isn’t a bit of a mess, but you know what?  If it is, that’s alright too.

So here’s wishing our little baby, now standing and walking and well to speaking, speaking with the voices of many: beautiful, clear, strong, voices all, many happy returns of this day.

Canvas birthday banner - Copy

I hope yet to write that post about what my fellow authors have taught me, perhaps when things have stilled a bit.  But for today,  I must be content to say (as a poet once said), “and I love you, fucking all.”

cupcake 1

Those who feel the breath of sadness

Sit down next to me

Those who find they’re touched by madness

Sit down next to me

Those who find themselves ridiculous

Sit down next to me. . .

~ James – Sit Down


© Ruby Tuesday and A Canvas Of The Minds 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ruby Tuesday and A Canvas Of The Minds with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


20 thoughts on “A Different Kind Of Celebration

  1. Happy Birthday Us!!! You know three year old’s are very special little beings. I should know! They are full of fun, laughter and don’t forget cuddles. Their little personalities are starting to shine through, and they’re not so little after all. Their likes and dislikes are plain to see for all who are greeted by the armful of toys they come running out of the bedroom to show you. See? Three year old’s are simply the best. Yay!

    • Three is a very special age, I certainly haven’t forgotten that. . . Though I love that you brought it to my mind. 🙂 Maybe that means there’s something pretty wonderful ahead in Canvas’ third year.

      One way or another, I’m so grateful to be sharing this experience with you, dearest Cate. ♥

  2. Happy birthday! Thank you, Ruby … I have the same high, silly expectations for myself, and I am working so hard on being half as kind to myself as I am to every one else. This is a beautiful labor of love ! Celebrate !

    Love, Taylor Arthur

    • Thank you, Taylor, for your very kind words and your feeling for Canvas. And I hope you succeed in cutting yourself a bit of slack on the expectation thing. Goodness knows it can be difficult, but you deserve it.

    • Janet, thank you! And thank you for being so constant and stalwart and supportive. Your presence over the years has meant (and continues to mean) so very, very much to me. xo

    • Cat, on behalf of everyone involved, thank you! We couldn’t be what we are without the kind support and engagement of wonderful bloggers and readers like you. 🙂

  3. Woo hoo! Happy birthday to your baby, Ruby (and Lulu)! You’ve whelped a wonderful lively being here, and I’m so glad to be a part of it. Hoping the tempest of life calms for you soon.

    • Ha! From now on Canvas shall be referred to as “our little whelp!” I love that.

      Thank you so much for all you bring to the project, Sid. I’m so grateful to have you as part of Team Canvas!

    • Faith, you make me glad to be on the internet whenever I find you (or when you find me). You’ve a very special presence and you light up the darkest days. I am so grateful to know you, and the whole of the Canvas family is blessed to have your support! xo

  4. Reblogged this on Sunny With a Chance Of Armageddon and commented:
    This brought tears to my eyes. Congratulations on such success!

    Ruby is unquestionably Canvas’ mother, dedicating her life to nurturing this project into the beautiful, wonderful success, as only a mother could do. For that, I’d like to thank her. There are a great many times I’ve felt like an absentee father in this respect, seemingly only having scarce moments to pop in at the grandest occasions. I’m so grateful that Canvas could be headed by one of the most fantastic souls I’ve ever met in my life.

    And I’m also so very grateful for everyone who has taken part in the ongoing life of Canvas. Thank you!

    • Lulu, you are so very, very wonderful. Without you there would be no Canvas, no Blog For Mental Health, and my life would certainly be a whole lot less wonderful. Your spirit is always here, and I think we make a pretty perfect pair between us. And now with all the authors who have joined us through the years, adding and sharing their own stories, their strength and wisdom and beauty. . . We really created something special, between all of us. I think it’s pretty amazing and definitely cause to celebrate!

      And you know what? The wonderful thing about how the site has grown and what it’s turned into is we can each of us easily take time away and come back to write again when it works in our lives. Any time you pop your wonderful self in makes me smile!

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