Spilling Open: The Art of Becoming Yourself is a book about self-discovery, a book about growing up – more than anything, a book about learning to love yourself – even your flaws.
The book’s creator, Sabrina Ward Harrison, is an amazing woman, an amazing artist and, above all, an amazing writer. “Spilling Open” is her journal – written during her 23rd year – a year of growing and developing, not to mention being on her own for the first time.
Sabrina, a beautiful, young (originally) Canadian writer speaks what her heart cannot say. Through her book, she speaks with a voice so pure and beautiful that it is unstoppable. She speaks in words of poetry and prose and connects each line to drawings and photographs that display the words that she cannot express.
Sabrina writes her journal with an amazing amount of courage and honesty. She speaks of sadness in a way that makes the reader truly feel her pain, with lines like, “I feel sad on the inside of my skin,” and, “A storm hit yesterday, the moon was so bright that it wouldn’t let me sleep. The day felt invisible like time couldn’t make itself known. I want to twist away from this loneliness, there seems to be no place for it in this world around me. Where does everyone else put their sadness?” These thoughts resonate throughout this brilliant compilation of words, famous quotes and artwork.
All through Spilling Open, it is quite obvious that Sabrina is writing for herself, but her audience would most likely be young girls and young women who feel the same pains of growing, the hardships of maturing and becoming women.
Sabrina shows the whole world her insecurities in lines that most everyone can relate to, such as, “I’m afraid to show you who I really am, because I am afraid you might not like it – and that’s all I’ve got,” and, “I have noticed that I have spent a lot of time comparing myself to other young women my age, watching for traits they possess that I feel I lack. It’s very exhausting.”
This book is not just a girl’s journal: It is a journey for the reader. While reading through the pages of her days and the words of her sadness and loneliness, the reader cannot help but relate and feel what Sabrina speaks. This book is a beautiful work of art, a beautiful representation of a girl who wasn’t afraid to be completely honest with the whole world.
Above all, this book is one of hope and understanding of one’s self.
I think Sabrina sums up her entire book when she says, “The truth is we all ache. We all have growing pains and wonder if we are okay and enough and loved. The thing is we really are. Without the silver shoes and the leopard print sheets. We are enough without all the things we buy to make us much more than we are or need to be. We are simple. We are complex. We are rare. As is.”