“You will lose someone you can’t live without,and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.” – Anne Lamott
Where I Am: Loss
In addition to making art, I’ve always enjoyed writing. It just made sense that when I created my website I would pair a short blog alongside my visual art. However, I didn’t ever think I would share my feelings online. Don’t get me wrong, I have the utmost respect and admiration for those that are able to open themselves up to others through the magic of technology. In fact, in the past 9 months I’ve become even more appreciative of the fearless, vulnerable, authentic people that are willing to share their life experiences, however difficult, with the rest of the world. I perceive many people do so not only to process what they are going through themselves, but also have hope that something they say will resonate with someone else. That’s where I find myself now… hoping that by sharing my experience it will help me as I move forward each day and maybe, just maybe, ring true to others.
I lost the person that I loved and hoped to marry unexpectedly this past October. I’d be lying if I said that the past 9 1/2 months were anything less than Hell. As I move through my grief I have found it unbelievably difficult to continue my work with Fine Lines. It’s hard for me to believe that I haven’t put pen to paper in over 9 months. To be completely honest my business, my Etsy shop, and most importantly, my passion and drive to create seem to have all but disappeared. Until last fall, sitting down with a pen and paper gave me peace and allowed me to recharge and reflect. I now find myself at a crossroads… As hard as each day is, I know deep down that I want and NEED to find a way to reconnect with the life-giving practice my art once was for me.
Kris would want me to pursue my passion. Outside of my parents, he was my biggest supporter and cheerleader. He never let me give up, he encouraged me when I was feeling tapped out or tired and he inspired me. He helped me find connections in local galleries. He promoted my small business to anyone that would listen and challenged me to come up with new and fresh ideas.
Where I Am: Hope
A week ago I had a thought/question that took hold of me and just wouldn’t let go: Is there a way to ease back into my art without it seeming so overwhelming? I went online and after researching different types of art therapy exercises it was actually a Pinterest post that caught my eye and peaked my interest. The link listed a 30 day writing challenge with different subjects for each day. I liked the idea of being prompted to be creative without the pressure to create something from scratch start-to-finish. I read through several creative writing lists and decided I liked some of the pieces and parts but wanted to come up with some of my own.
I made a plan. First, I would draw, rather than write, based on the prompts I came up with (that is the point, right?!) Second, I knew I needed to think of a different description that spelled out exactly what I hoped to accomplish. I didn’t want to put pressure on myself to complete something every day for 30 days. This seemed stressful and almost sent me running in the opposite direction! After further research I decided on: “30 Drawing Prompts to Encourage a Visual Conversation with Yourself.” Finally, I brainstormed and made a list of potential prompts.
My goal is to be gentle with myself and use the exercise to reintroduce art, and the joy that once accompanied it, back into my life. I’m excited to get started and realize that It may turn out that I draw something everyday, once a week or only every 2-3 weeks. My plan is to share some of what comes out of my prompts on my Facebook page as well as here on my Blog. However it turns out, I feel good about this next step!
I’ve included a printable version of the 30 prompts PDF I put together in case you’re curious or would like to give it a try yourself!