My big, crazy dream…

I have this big, crazy dream.

I’ve had it for a while.

Due to my experiences… as a creative creature who lost sight of herself (for many years) – and then – found herself again… I have wanted – for a long time – to use my specific talents and gifts – in helping and encouraging others (whether kids, teens or adults) to EMBRACE their beautiful uniqueness and to love and accept themselves (exactly as they are right now).

And so… I wrote a poem.  And (kinda like Dr. Seuss likes to do)… I illustrated it too.

Here’s a titbit (PS: read the words on each page out loud for the best effect):











“You need to stop day-dreaming!  Work hard at school!

You must pass your tests and obey all the rules!

Study your maths and your accountancy

You’ll need them one day in a job – wait and see!”

“Stop playing those games!  Stop fooling around!

Stop laughing so loudly.  You need to calm down!”

“Your art’s just a hobby, your jokes are not funny

You need to pass science if you want to earn money!”

“You need to be cultured, refined and mature

and dutiful, dainty, discreet and demure.

You’ll get a good job and you’ll marry one day,

life will work out – IF you do what we say”…

And Hat started thinking:

hat pic

“I’m sucking at schoolwork.  I’m just getting fatter.

I’m good at the stuff that does not seem to matter.

Perhaps if I *fix* myself – all will be well,

’cause people want “normal” from what I can tell.

If I tone myself down and re-program my mind,

then I’ll be like the others… and all will be fine”

And thus, on that day, Hat resolved to reform

she would be like the rest and conform to the norm.

She tossed out her weird stuff and went on a diet,

she banished her dreams and became rather quiet.

She even threw out her collection of hats.

She stopped writing poems…

and she stopped popping rats.

Out went her artwork and prized peacock feather…

then “Hat” was abandoned…

she called herself… Heather.


Okay – so, there you go.

That was about 1 third of the book I’ve made.  Update:  it’s finished!!! 🙂

My Big Dream is two-fold.  Firstly – I’d like to see this poetry-picture-book published – and distributed far and wide… with the hope (and the big-fat-dream) that it will help somebody to think twice before attempting to mould themselves (or their kids) according to other people’s expectations and ideals.

The second part of my Big-Fat-Dream… (and probably the part that most excites me, because I’ve been dreaming about this for bloody ages)… is to create a unique little short-film… of this poem.

So – there you go.

I’m putting that little dream “out there”.

Do I attempt to crowd-fund this thing?  Update:  That’s exactly what I did!  Thank-you, backers!! 🙂

Do I put a “donate” button on my website?  (uh… no)

Do I brown-nose friends-in-high-places… (not that I have many of those).

Or… is this just another one of those well-meaning little projects that gets tucked away in the cupboard and kept as a cute little heirloom for my future grandkids…. (?)

I dunno.

Any thoughts???

Drop me an e-mail:

Hat x


UPDATE:  11th November 2015

The book is finished!  80 full-colour pages of illustrated poem about finding misplaced MUCH’ness and having the courage to be *SEEN* for who we truly ARE!

You can buy a copy from Amazon here, if you want.  🙂

LOADS and LOADS of love, gratitude and hugs to all the amazing people… blog-readers… crowd-funding backers… who made my dream come true!

Now on to Book #2 (the “lite”, kid’s version…)

And… the film!  (Squeeeeee!)

We ALL want the freedom to be ourselves

So… something new happened on my blog recently.

A post of mine went a bit viral.

Not viral (in terms of the internet)… not *truly* viral… but certainly viral for ME and my lil’ ol’ blog.

I usually get around 100 visitors (to my blog) every day.  That number triples or quadruples on days I post something new (by the way – I only checked my stats yesterday.  Usually – I never check stats).

But 3 days ago… my in-box started pinging wildly with new folk signing up… new twitter followers… and, when I looked at the blog… I realised that 3 days ago, I had 28 000 visitors to my blog.  Yesterday it was 36 000.  This morning, it’s steadily climbing at 15 000.

The post – in question – is pretty short (especially compared to some of my long, ranty posts).  Mostly – it’s about a story from Ken Robinson’s book “The Element” – that deeply moved me.

And the reason why that story deeply moved me… is because I related – in so many ways – with the story of the child who just didn’t *fit* into school… into the System… into the box.

In so many ways – I identified with the all-too-common situation of being a unique, creative individual – up against a school-system that continually tried to box me, mould me and force me to be something I’m not.

A system that continually told me that I ought to *fix* my weaknesses (like maths, science, accountancy)… instead of truly invest in – and focus on – my strengths (like art, music, storytelling).

A system that told me that the highest qualities to aspire to was loyalty (usually to another system – like government or religion)… obedience, patriotism, following-the-rules, fitting-in, being “sensible”, “practical”, “responsible”, “respectable”, “acceptable”… and being a good, obedient, dutiful, un-questioning little citizen (and later, raising good, obedient citizen-children).

It’s not just the school-system that does this, by the way.  The school system is where the moulding begins… but, in many way, our toxic westernised society simply endorses and strengthens these unspoken rules.

We’re told that life works a certain *way*.

That there’s a “right” way… and there’s a “wrong” way.

The “right” way works like so:

  • Go to school for 13 years (or more).  Obey the rules.  Pass the tests.  Impress the powers-that-be.
  • After school – go to university (regardless of whether you even know who you are – or what you actually want to DO with your life).  Get a degree.
  • After university, get a job (doesn’t matter whether the job is fulfilling – or whether it makes you happy – or whether it plays to your unique strengths.  Or whether the work is something relevant and important that makes a difference in the world. What matters is The Money.  You get “a job”… for… “the money”)
  • And – after all – you need the money… because now you’re already in debt (usually student-debt… for a start).
  • Buy car.
  • Buy stuff.
  • Get married (with big, expensive wedding and short, expensive honeymoon)
  • Have children.
  • Buy big new house.
  • Buy new stuff for new house.
  • Maybe get a promotion at job (money used to buy bigger house, bigger car or more stuff).
  • Send your own kids to school prepare them for the ‘zact same process.
  • Save for “Retirement” (on the bet that you can buy yourself the freedom to live the life of your choosing – “later”)
  • Get into more debt.  Buy more stuff.
  • Exist on a routine of working, eating, sleeping, TV-watching, shopping and bill-paying.
  • Until – eventually – you’re old… and (maybe – if you’re one of the fortunate ones) you retire with enough money to chug around your nice retirement village in your golf-cart.
  • Die.

But… y’know… what if this “Right Way”… doesn’t work for everyone?  What if there are people who are different?  Or who want something different out of life?

  • What if there are people who don’t want to send their kids through the System of School (usually because they – themselves – were damaged by that same system)…(?)
  • What if there are those who couldn’t give a steaming turd about things like “status” and the accumulation of more *stuff*?
  • What if there are those who would rather live in the *NOW*… than spend their lives fretting and what-if’ing about the future? (The Top 5 Regrets of the Dying is a useful wake-up call in this regard).
  • And those who would rather travel the world than ‘settle down’ in the suburbs?
  • And those who don’t give a damn about the-latest-fashions… and what’s on-trend… and what’s-hot-right-now… and the latest celebrity scandal… and what’s on Reality TV…?
  • Or those who just – want something *more* than rush-hour-traffic, dull-routine, suburbia, shopping malls, soap operas, office cubicles, fitting-in, measuring-up and being “normal”…?

And… I think that for me… and certainly for most people – deep down inside of us… fighting to be *heard* amidst the din of societal expectations… is a very human desire for freedom – and the right to just *BE* who we are.

And I wonder why that’s the reason why my post has been receiving so much traffic.  Perhaps we’re all just searching for ways to embrace the unique individuals that many of us lost sight of… after years and years of forced compliance.

My natural self… my *real* self is creative, adventurous, spontaneous, messy, wild, un-tamed, slightly potty-mouthed, risk-taking, idealistic, considerably stubborn – and brimming with questions.

Here’s a photo that pretty-much sums up the Real Me (taken on my 8th birthday):

tramp party

But – for so many years – I conformed to the expectations placed upon me by school, church and society.  For so many (miserable) years – I completely lost sight of who I was!

And life became about fitting-in, obeying-the-rules, being sensible – and “normal” – and doing what was expected of me (and it almost killed me… in more ways than one).

Here’s a photo taken during the I-Must-Fit-In-And-Be-Normal years:

sad heather5

I am SO done with that now.

And maybe you are too.

And maybe we can journey forward together… and find ourselves again.

PS:  I host creative workshops and send out downloadable “Hatbooks” that tackle this kind of thing in a unique, hands-on way.  For more info, send me an E: