“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
I will admit it, the past few days I have been living in my head and letting my fears get the best of me. It might have something to do with my cycle coming up soon, but still…it has not been great. Thank God I have people in my life who actually understand this and aren’t going to run away from me because of it. I am human, I am imperfect, but life is constant practice. We just have to keep telling ourselves that.
And because I have been up in my head, I had a bit of a break down. Simple words making phrases that were intended with love and kindness turned into haunting demons from days of yore that I did not DARE speak of. It made me mull over it the entire day…to the point where I could not even paint. I felt crushed, like I was bleeding from the inside out and it came out as anger, pain and tears. I haven’t felt like that in a pretty good while. And I let it all out over FaceTime with my man.
See, being an artist is hard because you put your soul and heart into everything that you do. It is not just a painting, a sculpture, a dance, a song, a poem, or a photo. It is a glimpse of ones soul through the lens of that individual. It has emotions, feelings, and memories tied to it. Everyone sees things differently in our world and because of that everyone feels they are entitled to be a critique. People that are not comfortable in their own skin tend to be the first to say, “That is wrong, fix this, I hate this, I can do better than that, I don’t understand this, that is not art.” and so on and so forth.
When we come from a place of love and understanding, then the critique is softened and said when it is ready to be heard. Sometimes though, it can still be misconstrued and that isn’t anyone’s fault. That is just because the other person is too guarded, in which in this case I was for several reasons. Art, for me, is therapy. Most of the time is there was something going on that I didn’t know how to deal with, then I would delve into my artwork. I have ALWAYS done that. I have a hard time communicating my feelings through words sometimes and the only way it can come out is if I draw, paint or some how put it on some sort of paper or surface that is tangible to my hands. It is raw, it is very personal, and close to me.
In the past, people didn’t understand this. I was the weird art kid that always had a sketch book and would hide behind novels and note pads. It was my wall so no one could come in, even though I really wanted them to. I wanted to show them who I really was, but when I did I just was shoved off and told, “[insert persons name here] is better than you.” Or I would make a doodle for someone I really cared about and then find it in the trash. “Oh, it’s only a drawing. It doesn’t mean anything. You make these all the time so you shouldn’t be upset.” Even in my serious relationships I had, I didn’t feel like my art mattered anymore so I stopped creating things. I thought, “oh, they don’t care…what is the point of this?”
That was the depression speaking, but now that I have started creating again those little voices still pop up now and again. They are all in my head though… Sometimes it takes a lot to quiet the noise and turn up the sound. I have a lot to learn, one of them being able to separate myself from a piece. It is like a little piece of you that is no longer a part of you. Kind of like a memory…it changes with each and every time you remember it. It will come in time, but it will be slow. I am still very raw in this state with rediscovering that part of myself. I will get there one day though and when I do, I am not going to turn back. Namaste.
by: Michelle Curry
And as the Winter leads into Spring, where the flowers blossom and the trees breath in new life from the sun, I too shall thaw. And just like the temperatures and winds that are unpredictable, my soul shall be as well, for I will have a blistering cold winds accompanied by calm warm breezes. May my crown of branches and thorns make way for flowers and vines and deadened leaves become soft moss in which I am cloaked. Have the frost turn into morning dew that gathers and waters my heart and spirit. Bright Yellow and Cobalt Blue like the Iris are my colors and i shall wear them like war paint. And with each step I take, may the ground soften and ease into new life. The Holly King has gone and Jack of the Wood has come to play and I too have awoken from my slumber…and just like the song birds, I won’t be quiet anymore.