We hear the word “creative” being spoken about all around us, yet it has a different meaning to all. It makes me think of artistic abilities, and a strategic approach “outside of the box” thinking pattern. It never dawned on me that there was more meaning behind such a versatile word.
You see I was always creative from a tender young age starting my life out as a dancer, learning creative techniques and choreography to express myself through the love of music for over 20 years. Fast forward to my life as a mature young woman; I found myself faced with an opportunity of a lifetime. A position with the world’s leading cosmetic brand, MAC Cosmetics! Although I had a passion for makeup throughout my dancing career as the two go hand in hand, I was not able to make the connection at the time as to why this door of opportunity would open. I’ll be honest, I was not able to list any prior cosmetic retail history and my passion for makeup had everything to do with how it made me feel, not because I was “experienced.”
I would soon learn that my creative ability to apply color through highlighting and contouring certain aspects on other’s and myself would make a significant impact on my life. Within months of completely feeling confident in my role I was struck with tragic news. I received answers that I had been searching for since the age of 14, a diagnosis of bi-lateral Primary Lymphedema in my lower extremities. I could not even make sense of what this meant for me, all I knew is that I couldn’t pronounce or even spell the word.
How could this happen? I was young, healthy and a dancer my whole life; now looking at my legs which at one point were my greatest strength, now my greatest weakness. Rather than speak out and highlight the truth I chose to contour my emotions by utilizing makeup to hide behind my Lymphedema. Quickly my creative passion was dwindling because I had now placed more focus on controling every aspect of what I had and not surrendering to it.
It wasn’t until 2013 that I hit a breaking point within my journey and that is when I completely surrendered to my past and asked God to show me the purpose and plans He had set out before me. So if I start at the lowest point of my body, He gave me the ability to utilize my feet to express to the world who I am and my creative talents of dance. He then showed me that I was capable of utilizing my hands to touch lives through the power of color. He is now continually opening doors of opportunity for me to use my voice and has increased my capability to bring a creative approach to Lymphedema awareness. My voice is a reminder to no longer view my lower extremities as a weakness, but once again my greatest strength. His purpose for me is to share my passion filled story of how my creative life began and that the legs and feet He placed on my body have and will continue to carry me throughout my journey.
Living Creative with Lymphedema,