Without a doubt, this year has been the turning point for me and my writing. Joining Hive in June '21 has been the best thing I have done in years!
Not only has it reignited that spark of creativity within me, but the connection with kindred spirits and the friendships that are growing from those connections within the confines of a virtual world both on the blockchain and in the related Discords is something that is incredibly special to me and something I never would have thought possible before now.
My Hive Highlight for 2021 has to be about one thing, and one thing alone: CONNECTION
The timing of this Community Challenge by @guiltyparties is uncanny. Almost exactly a week ago today, I wrote an article in response to @snook's Blockchain Journey Challenge called Connection in the Cosmos - The Journey Continues and I feel like I may spend part of this article of mine either quoting from that article of mine or alluding to some of its themes 😂 but I will try to keep quotation to a minimum and will give a reference where I do.
Some time back, quite a few years now actually, I watched a film that truly touched me, called Life as a House. Now it wasn't groundbreaking cinema for most people and it had its critics, but it spoke to the rebuilding of lives, of family, of reconciliation, of trust, of love, and of connection, and it used the metaphor of a house rebuild at the centre of the storyline, to carry the full force of its impact.
The premise went something like this,(well this is my interpretation anyway) that Life is like a house. Sometimes we need to break it down completely or to be completely broken, in order to be able to rebuild it again to our own liking. We need first to experience the destruction, the devastation, to enable us to experience the subsequent joy that can follow, if we allow it to enter. Just as a house has foundations, structure, supports, entrances, windows to let in the light, and a multitude of rooms, each having its own purpose, so our lives are built on relationships, knowledge, and understanding, and we allow others to gain insight into our multi-faceted personas through sharing, and connection, but we can't do that without opening the shutters and letting in the light. Without the solid earth foundations or the cement between the bricks, a house would just be a pile of blocks stacked on top of each other, waiting to topple over in the slightest of storms. Similarly, a life that is not imbued with true human connection and friendship, a meeting of the minds and hearts and human spirit, built on strong foundations of trust and empathy, knowledge, compassion, and understanding, where we choose to let in the light of others, is a life that lacks the richness of human relationships and meaning.
In the film, one of the main characters, George (played by Kevin Cline) has just discovered that he is dying of cancer, and he is trying to reconnect with his estranged 16-year-old son Sam (played by Hayden Christiansen). In one important scene, he implores Sam to rebuild with him (both the house and their relationship):
... change can be so constant…
That you don’t even feel the difference….
Until there is one.
It can be so slow that you don’t know…
That your life is better or worse till it is.
Or it can just blow you away…
Make you something different in an instant.
It happened to me.
Build this house with me.
And this is kinda how I feel about Hive, how I have experienced it as a community of living breathing people during the course of the 6 months that I have been on the blockchain, and how I relate to those here who are special to me.
In terms of my own writing, I look back at how I am growing day in and day out, improving all the time, honing my craft...because I am here on Hive and so many opportunities present themselves to enable me to pursue this passion that I have for writing. It's a process and I will continue to learn this art of words, and travel this writing journey, probably until my dying day.
On the other hand, I have also been blown away...by connection! Connection with like-minded souls that I happened across because I took the time to linger in the comments; to engage meaningfully and to seek out that which fed my soul. I came seeking connection, and I found it.
In coming to the focus of my Hive highlight, because I can't just leave it as a generalisation, there is a spark that leads to creativity, and one that leads to connection, and often they combine to bowl you over and leave you reflecting deeply on what just happened.
For me, that happened with a few people on this platform, and I have to single out 2 of them for being the truly special people that they are, as it is the connection and friendship that I have found with them that has proved to be my true Hive Highlight of 2021. It was not something I had expected to find on a blockchain when I set out to connect with people here, and I am immensely proud to be involved in their respective projects today and to be part of their respective teams/teems.
In the order in which I met them 😂 and here I will partly quote from my previous article as it feels silly to reinvent the wheel ...
The first person is Cal @calumam
I met @calumam in late June and my time on Hive and Proofofbrain became quite joyous. I had come across one of his older articles whilst browsing, interestingly named GRAPHICal 002. If you read that article, and if you understand me at all, you may understand what sparked an immediate connection for me, both with Cal and his article and with my own creativity. So many things happened at once for me at that moment. I decided...sod it with trying my hand at writing about topics I had no real understanding of just because I was trying to make sense of it all and trying to relate to what I thought people wanted to read! It was not bringing me any joy. I was doing it almost out of duty to myself because I had promised myself I would write regularly again and had been struggling to get my spark back... and then Cal came along...Off the back of GRAPHICal 002 I was inspired to write again from within me, I relocated that spark, and I am grateful to (him)... for that; the timing was perfect. And this was my response The Lake of Imagination. From there I discovered Cal's POB-WOTW...I absolutely love this contest and it is still the creative highlight of any week for me in which it is running source
We connected in the comments and then through WOTW. Cal challenges me creatively and intellectually and makes me laugh so much. He is so enthusiastic and committed to making life on Hive (more specifically Proofofbrain and Vyb) better for everyone and has more energy than any of us know what to do with 😂 I try to keep up but am always left playing catch up! Love you and appreciate you Cal💗
The second person that made a huge impact in my life this year on Hive is Leah @dreemsteem
Connecting with @dreemsteem and joining her Dreemport project and Dreemteem. I have never met anyone quite like her. She is one special person with depth of character and warmth of heart. A fantastic author, motivator, mentor, leader, and friend. Her love for people can be felt in her posts and in the comments, wherever she touches down on the blockchain. source
I feel truly blessed to have her in my life. I haven't laughed and shared so much with a new friend in years, but then some things just require true connection to enable the love and energy to flow effortlessly. I can't believe I get to land on your mountain in a few months' time, Leah. Special times ahead indeed and I think it's safe to say that that visit, connecting in person with you and the others in that little group, will become my 2022 Hive Highlight, without a doubt💗
Finally, I wanted to edit this post to include one of my comments made below because as I was writing it, it really dawned on me as to what an impact this person has had on my journey here in respect of connection. So, @wrestlingdesires
My friend, you are 100% a big part of my journey. Love you @wrestlingdesires 💗🙏 You are truly one of the best people I have connected with here on Hive. If anyone wants to see how that chain of events unfolded, I gave my experience of it all here. I feel like with you, I was just kinda hanging out chatting with people, trying to find my way, and enjoying the connection in the comments, ...and then you stopped by and offered to take me on a ride... I wasn't sure where we were headed but I was in a new environment, and your enthusiasm and kindness blew me away so I jumped in the car so to speak. I had no idea where I was going but you seemed to have a pretty clear plan and have mapped out a wonderful journey for yourself ever since... I've enjoyed the ride...perhaps too much hehe....you've taken me to meet amazing people and included me in some awesome writing experiences ... always encouraging and supporting each other. It's been so much fun !LOLZ ... and in case you haven't noticed... I haven't got out of the car yet!!! !ROTFL 🤣🤣🤣 You have introduced me to some of the best that Hive has to offer...and there is always something new and interesting that one of us finds as we pass through and engage with the various communities and events on Hive. Revisiting our faves, sometimes on our own, sometimes together. And along the way ...I often receive from you or send you a ...
...hey...have you seen this? 💗🙏
Long may the ride continue ...