You are free

January 8, 2004

copyright 2004 * christine castro
You Are Free, an illustration I drew for Measure Magazine

My friend Daniele is doing something very cool this year. She’s doing everything that scares her.

I love that idea: Taking wild, courageous leaps into territory we’ve never gone before–territory we assumed was blocked off with yellow tape and orange cones. I want to do more of that, too. It’s why I made a couple of concrete resolutions, like learning how to sew and completing a book. Because if I don’t do it now, I never will, and if I don’t even start, I’ll definitely never finish.

Rama said something to me last year that has echoed in my ears since. “Christine,” he said, “you’d be really good if you were more brave.”

He was talking about my artwork, but it’s true of a lot of things. It is so much easier to show hints at brilliance — short snippets of writing and half-done sketches — than to finish a piece and let it stand on its own two feet. What if it’s not as good as I hoped it would be? Worse, what if it’s really awful? What if I discover that all this time that I’ve been carefully treading, I’ve been on the completely wrong path to begin with?

It’s possible. Everything is.

Maybe I’ll surprise myself. Maybe I’ll end up creating something beautiful. Maybe those dreams tugging at my shirttails are trying to tell me something I need, and deserve, to hear. That I can do it. That I always could. I just had to try.


  • I'm Christine, and this is a slice of my life—a sweet, rich, wildly indulgent slice that would taste really good with a scoop of Breyers vanilla bean ice cream. Read more >>

  • I run a darling, friendly, little graphic design studio.
    I look on the bright side.
    I take photos. Lots of photos.
    I wish on stars and on websites.

  • I built my first web site 7 years ago and got 15 seconds of fame. (It changed my life.)
    I launched, then relaunched, an online magazine.
    I admitted to several embarrassing crushes.
    I consumed more bacon than any human should and lived to tell the tales.

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