Art heals

I have said it before, and I will say it again…

ART HEALS

It heals boredom in children, confusion in teenagers and pain in adults.

It reaches more than that, certainly, but that is a good start. I think the hard part is convincing people to try. With the current wave of coloring books all over the shelves of book stores and art supplies stores, I believe that the general population is taking notice.

Thursday evening, I had the great honor to invite women facing the dragon of breast cancer to my studio for a creative evening. The evening was focused on the well being of spirit. These wonderful ladies have faced heart breaking diagnosis, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation and more. They have faced darkness. They have faced fear.

While each had a unique journey, there was definitely a commonality there. I admired their strength. I admired their views on life. I was inspired by their world view, their desire to move on with life and cherish each moment.

We began the stormy evening with some simple drawings with white ink on black paper. They were like children in a candy shoppe. I so enjoyed watching their faces change and their shoulders relax. This seemed to open the door for them to share. as well as a certain wonderful calm. They didn’t want to stop! I needed to silence my need to push through to the next agenda item. I allowed them the control and took my cues from their desire.

1bccr 2bccr

Next we moved through a mediation I had written for them. It was oddly perfect even though I had never met any of the participants. It was meant to be a moment to breathe, to inspire some joy and to allow their spirit a moment to rest.

We moved on to a mandala after this. It was interesting to see the various ways they were created. While I gave a few guideline, I really wanted to allow opportunity to create without rules.

The conversation got very personal at different times. I almost felt as if I was intruding. The wisdom shared, the reality that appeared, the hope that was still fully instilled in these ladies was inspiring.

From all of this I took away two message.

  1. Life is short- do whatever the heck you want.
  2. ART HEALS- each and every participant shared their appreciation to me. Each remarked that they did not want to stop drawing. Each created beautiful art.

So…. I will continue the mission…. to share the tools of art- to open up Create Art 4 Good, and to be faithful to the view that everyone is an artist and it is good for us.

Be blessed this night and always.

Love & Peace,

Susan

So it’s a snow day

It’s interesting- today I woke up to several inches of snow blanketing the ground, when at midnight there was not a snowflake in the sky. By 8 am I couldn’t open my front door without pushing several inches of snow forward. The front porch stairs were a mound of snow, no longer definable.

Some people go absolutely crazy when this happens.. I suppose the “doers” feel trapped and frustrated. Truth be known, I  too felt a bit trapped. Especially when I had difficulty even getting the front door open. We get all bent out of shape because our lives have to slow down a little because we have to deal with the 22” of snow that is falling rapidly from the sky.

Then I started thinking about the fact that sometimes things are put in my way to slow me down a little bit. Perhaps today was the snow.

While it is true that I don’t always have a fond appreciation for slowing down, I am reasonably certain it is a necessary thing for most humans. I will refrain from saying all because that is just too blanket a statement and well, I try to be fairly accurate with my statements. For me the act of slowing down is vital, I actually forget to breathe (good thing it is an involuntary action)-

I was sharing with someone today that I am consciously trying to be aware of all that is around me. This lends itself to an appreciation as well as a deeper awareness. I am even trying to be aware of my breathing. It sounds silly I know, but try it. Concentrate on even the intent and sound of your breath. I promise you, that you will feel differently after you begin to do it.

But I digress. We were discussing slowing down, big storm all that. right. 

So what would you do if you did slow down?

For me, I didn’t get down much on my to do list. I pretty much had a week of work scheduled for Tuesday. And guess what? The world did not stop spinning. It continued, just as it always does.

Except I was blessed to have art supplies firmly in my hand, and peace in my heart.

Breathe… slow down a bit…. everything will happen in just the right time.

blessings and love,

Susan

Doodle 1

this sacred journey

Recently, I have taken quite a bit of time to work on me. I have faced some demons, embraced the light and perhaps started to understand a little more about me, about my mission as a human being on this earth.

No, there weren’t rays of sunshine blinding me from the heavens, but I have to say that in many ways this transformation really was just about that obvious. No, I probably don’t “look” metamorphosed, but as one friend noted recently, I am “calmer, more content, definitely more at peace.” I’ll take it.

One lesson I have witnessed repeatedly (and hopefully learned) is that we each have a mission or a calling. Just as each of us has a unique fingerprint, it is also true that each of us is blessed with unique gifts and abilities. I now understand why my mother constantly encouraged me to “not hide my light under a bushel” but in fact, to shine like a star. I really misunderstood- It wasn’t a pride thing, it was really a just use your gifts thing. I couldn’t understand that. I mistook confidence in one’s mission for arrogance.

The work I have done has not always been easy. There were many lessons to learn. There were many questions I struggled with and I had to sit and wait for the answers. They weren’t always revealed all that quickly, but truthfully each seemed to arrive in the right time. The mission has been one of joy, but also hard work. It seems self-actualization could actually be within reach.

Why am I bringing this up? Well, so many reasons. I want you to experience this great and amazing gift.

One of the lessons I have learned is that the more vulnerable I am, the more open I am and honestly the more successful I am. When we are born we are completely vulnerable. Nothing protects us when we leave our mother’s womb. Yet our needs are very simple and we don’t really know to self protect.

ah HA! Exactly

The more I ALLOW, the more I am present, the more joy that rains down on me.

This is not an easy thing. As we grow and age we learn to protect ourselves, we allow addictions to keep us from our fullest potential, we even INVITE these things into our lives on purpose. I am not speaking of addictions as someone completely incapacitated in a gutter with a horrific drug habit. I am actually speaking of the little things that are subtle, that sneak into your life and rob you from actually living.

I invite YOU to actively explore. Maybe go off the grid for a bit. Explore, learn and grow.

I pray you are patient and discover as I have – the wonder of this sacred journey.

with peace and love,

Susan

Sacred Journey