I seem to be doing a lot of become-ing, lately! And it feels like really good timing!!!
You see, there’s a whole lot to process in the world, just now. I’ll leave the news bit up to you. (Well, I’ll try!)
In fact, let’s think of that as CONTEXT! The literal and metaphorical space in which all the rest is happening. Not just for me, but for all of us.
Add in jaw pain, impending dental surgery, three pots of bone broth, a whole lot of tradition-shifting, and a really large mental sack filled with varied degrees of terrifying me-as-patient memories, and it feels like quite the batch of stuff to sort.
Painting helps! Emotionally and neurologically. Keeping up with the painting also helps with the homework list which, as the old saying goes, ain’t nuthin’!
The smaller canvas, in the photo above, is known as #StarSong. She’s logistically easy to manage, though I have to keep stopping for time to let things dry.
Friday brought #Constellation of Being back to the top of the list. It’s a 48×60″ canvas “home” for a 6 month long adventure known as Origins, which makes me orthopedically nervous. I so wanted to paint. And I found myself struggling.
The actual teaching process involved what we might call scribbling. With a brush. Eyes closed! Just between us, the eyes closed thing can be a bit scary if – like me – you’re well acquainted with falling down. Eventually, I took a break and just watched along with the rest of the livestream.
Grandmother Moon was intrigued… and showed up very early Saturday morning with a dream.
I don’t tend to see images much when I dream and this was no exception. I do hear dreams. In this case, the voice of my beloved Vet, Karen. First though, memory lane, and Sarah.
Though Sarah was not the first of our Newfie Rescues, she was the first of the Studio Angels.
At way too young an age, she developed rapidly increasing joint pain and instability. We did all the things. Then, she blew a disc in her back. As she was not a good candidate for surgery, it was time for big decisions.
While Karen and I sorted the options, she told me that, “When dogs are in pain they think they’ve been bad!”
And we couldn’t have that.
The night after our trip to the Rainbow Bridge, I woke up at about 3 am and headed for the studio. I had a big canvas that was stuck. (Well, I was stuck!) I searched the paint stash for some heavy body acrylics I’d never tried before and found an expired credit card for a pallet knife.
And I quit thinking! I just let it all out with no plan other than to make it through that night.
Grandmother Moon clearly suggested that it might be time for another trip to that place.
And it was!
I noticed several things as I just let it all go, all over the canvas.
My first thought was that it’s possible that we, like our 4-footed family members, think – or feel – that when we’re in pain, we’ve been bad. Or done something wrong.
Now, I know a fair amount about these sorts of things, and it seems entirely possible that there is an ancient bit of knowing involved.
What I know for sure is that I feel better. (Well, not my jaw, so much, but ME!) And, I’m kind of glad that the canvas needs more work, though I have no idea where we’re headed. Here’s where we are now…
And some big news… a week or so ago, it occurred to me that I was become-ing a Medicine Painter. Not just doing, but being.
Then, while I was slinging paint and tears all over the place, I realized that I have also become my own Medicine Basket!
And that is, somehow, oddly connected to the notion that we can become our own Fiercely Compassionate Grandmothers! The ones we need now. The kind who believe, like Frederick Buechner, that…
The sudden flash of tears we get is the surest sign of truth we have.
And this, dear hearts, might be a really good time for that!!!
ps… my physical therapists will be thrilled, too. All that swiping paint on a huge canvas has got to count for moving!
pps… curious about become-ing? Let’s talk! 45 min. My gift. You bring your dream. And a bit of red thread, if it’s handy. The calendar elves will hook you up!