“She was strong, and oh, so beautiful. And every once in a while, she would relax into the leaves that held her, trust in them, and then, well then, she’d take your breath away.”
The above quote, by Jodi Hills, accompanies her painting of a white calla lily. I love calla lilies, but more so, I adore Jodi and her seemingly endless ability to marry her stunning art with stirring words. Â http://www.jodihills.net
I have told the story before, but will recap it here. In 2011, I was about to take off on a trip that was scary and wondrous. Iâ€™d been invited to join a group heading into the Ganzi region of Tibet, and all the stars aligned to make it happen in short order.
The thing is, Iâ€™d never traveled solo before. Yes, I would be with a group once I arrived in China, but until then I was on my own. What if I missed my connecting flight in Tokyo? What if I lost my passport? What if, what if, what if.
And then, in a woo woo way, Â a bit of Jodi Hills magic came to my attention via a black and white magnet. I packed her words in my purse and used them as a nightlight in the dark unknown times. Whenever a moment of doubt started to bubble up within me, Iâ€™d read her prose and regain my purpose. Regain my sass.
Here are the words that held my hand when I was far from home:
I donâ€™t want to live timidly. I want to be bold in thought and kindness and gesture. I, we, must stretch in giving, reach in creativity, and enthusiastically attempt! Letâ€™s not live in fearâ€¦when our only fear is to not really live.
Hereâ€™s the crazy part. A year ago, or so, I went to Jodiâ€™s Facebook page. I just wanted to see what she was up to with her art. She had become this titan woman in my mind, accessible only through layers of marketing and mystical timing.
Being a complete Facebook dork, I accidentally messaged her when I intended to leave a general comment. To my shock, she responded in real time! She told me she was very much in love and about to get married. Once my “Oh my gosh is she really talking to me” stupor dissipated, and my fingers could move again, I shared the story of how her words carried me into a grand adventure and back. I wished her all the happiness she had given me…if that was even possible.
Jodi lives with heart, shares what is in her heart, and has touched mine. Â Jodi Hills? The best part of my day!