One of my favoirite books as a kid was Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson. For those of you unfamiliar with it, it's a story about a little boy named Harold who literally creates his own world with his purple crayon. When there's is no moon in the sky, he draws one. When there is no path to walk on, he draws one. When he gets into a dilemma, he draws his way out of it. Ultimately when he's tired, he draws himself back home to bed. Man did I want that crayon when I was a kid. Oh the things I would draw. As a kid, my dreams of persuing a creative path had been shot down repeatedly by a father who was convinced that I had "the mind of an engineer" and that was the route for me. He gave no credence to my many creative talents and sometimes dismissed them as flighty; telling me I was too smart for them. I also went to Catholic school where we were constantly taught to think inside the box and when I questioned anything (which I did all the time) I was literally called "Jezebel" and sent to the principals office then labeled a rebel who had problems with authority.

Instead, I should have been taught that my independent spirit was because I too, like Harold, had a "crayon" that was mine to use at will and that I also possessed my own spiritual road map. A road map containing all the things I came to the physical world to work on and experience which I would use my intuition and gut to read. I had no interest in being an engineer and grew to believe that a creative path was all types of wrong and I would therefore go on to feel an undercurrent of being a failure for decades to come.

When I had JD, my son (now 22) like most new parents, I didn't know very much. What I did know though, is that I wanted to do it differently. I wanted him to feel good about himself and above all to be happy. I thought about things long and hard and concluded that he didn't belong to me, he was on his own mission here and had his own things to work on and experience. My job was to nurture him and guide him as best as I could but ultimately, he was the only one who would ever know what he needed to make him happy.

It was in that moment of pure, unconditional, universal love for my son that I received one of the greatest gifts ever. The realization that in fact we are all born with our own "purple crayon." And that often times, parents and other influential adults (with quite possibly the best of intentions) think they know what's best for us and therefore either don't teach us how to use our crayons or even tell us we have one to use. It comes from their own fears and their own failures and from them being taught not to use their "crayon." I realized that I wasn't a failure at all. In fact, I knew as a kid exactly what I wanted and what made me happy but out of fear I had put my "crayon" away.

That was the best and brightest moment for me. The realization that no one can actually ever take away my (or your) "crayon" or my unique "inner map" for that matter. They are mine and mine alone and it was me that I (unknowingly at the time) put them away (in attempt to get my father's approval.) But what that meant is that at any given moment I could take them back out. I have been happily drawing MY life ever since. Is it perfect? Nope, I draw something else. Does everyone approve? Nope, it's not their place to judge my life. Am I happy? You bet I am!

LISTEN UP PEEPS: You were born with a "crayon" and an internal map of your own. No one, no matter who they are, ever has the right to take your dreams away or your "crayon" away unless you give it to them! It's yours and anyway, no one can ever draw your life as well as you can. Do not give anyone that power and if you already have, take it back. And parents, if you want your child to be happy, please teach them (from a place of love, not fear) that they too have their own crayon and inner map that they came to this physical earth plane with and that they can use them over and over to create their own reality. Focus on helping them learn how to create, not what to create. You have your own crayon and map for that.

Do not share your dreams with naysayers, they don't deserve it. Keep them locked inside you safe and sound until you are ready to draw them. Remember as powerful as naysayers may seem (because most of them are big mouthed, opinionated bullies) they are not doers! They are just the judgmental wallflowers of life who just stand there and watch everyone else dance and criticize them because they don't have the courage to get on the floor themselves. They have put their crayon down and are taking their frustration out on you. Don't follow suit. Pick up YOUR "crayon" right now and start to create YOUR world. Follow YOUR internal map and YOU will surely draw yourself right to happiness.

What will you draw first? Holla at me!