Friday, September 21, 2012

Saying YES

Yesterday was one of those days that sucked every last ounce of energy I had out of me. Nothing particular happened. No horrible events, news or catastrophes. 

Well, the cat pee'd on the bed to start the day off. But that seemed like small potatoes in the bigger scope of things.

It was a day where I felt done. Tired. Enough. No more. This ride called being human had worn me out. Not that I was in a space of removing myself from this life. No, nothing like that. But I was just so exhausted of the sameness, the slowness, the conflicting messages of "hard work" vs. "let it unfold," the need to strive and have goals vs. just be and listen to your inner voice, that there are lessons to be learned and the shit will just keep happening until you learn them...  Really? Seriously? Which IS it? Is THIS why we're here on this planet? To navigate again and again through the never-ending layers?

No thanks.

So I called a time out yesterday. Nope. Not gonna buy into ANY of it. I'm just gonna let it suck. Close the curtains, turn off my phone, stay away from the computer, and watch a couple movies. Let the world do what it needs to do but I no longer want to participate.

That was yesterday.

But it felt like I needed to just let go. That my only choice was to throw in the white flag. Surrender to it. Fine. 

Luckily I got a really good night's sleep.

Today started out better. The mood lifted, the muck felt released and purged. Mostly.

So this morning I did what I know deep down inside I need to do (and often forget), I painted.

And I cried. And released some more.

I also asked out loud for help, and wrote it down.

Then I decided - from where or from what depths I have no idea - but I FINALLY felt ready to paint on one of the gi-normous canvases I had bought last spring. Three feet by four feet!!! HUGE in my book! I ripped off the plastic, set up a space for it, and said out loud (partly out of exasperation, partly out of desperation, but also holding onto a sliver of hope)...

"I'm ready to go BIG! You hear me? Ready!!!"

And so I did. 

I started.


I also got a phone call that the short sale on our house was approved. 
It took less than a month!!! 

Miracle?

Perhaps.

Movement forward for sure. 
Some serious "unstuckness" occurring right before my very eyes.

Ok.

Thank you.

I believe.

And I'm gonna keep painting.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Mapping My World

Time to share what I've been creating the past couple months.

I feel like I don't make enough time for painting these days. Or that there just doesn't ever seem to be enough time for painting. But I realize I could say that about exercise too. Ha. Yet paintings have been created, retouched, finished, started...they have come into existence! The exercising? Not so much.

Part of me feels that I'm being kept so busy to stay out of my own way. That my Soul, my Gorgeous Deeper Self, is silently guiding to me to the exact right place. But it needs to keep me distracted and busy because otherwise I might steer us wrong. I might take us off into boring old directions. Well-worn paths. Been-there-done-that kind of things. Instead, wild adventures and opportunities are in the making, bigger than I could ever have dreamed up.

Yah. That's what I'm thinking.

In all my busy-ness.  

Sure.

Keep convincing yourself Ms. Indi. Ha!

I am also feeling a bit of a rebellious streak coursing through my veins these days. You see, one of my stories is that I have always been the "good kid," the well-behaved one. The polite one. The one who does her best and sees the silver lining (at least for others if not always for herself). The one who is never late. Who always finishes her homework. Eats her veggies. The compassionate one. The conscientious one. The reliable one. The one who leads by example. Blah blah blah. Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to make myself out to be super perfect or anything, oh no. I've done plenty of things that my mother never needs to know about. But the word RESPONSIBLE has often been attached to me.

And I'm a bit bored with this.

I want a break. I need to change things up.

I'm ready for some high heels, red lipstick and decadent food. I have no interest at the moment in giving a damn. Self-improve all you want, save the planet, seek enlightenment, be present, find your soul's path, dream your big dreams, create the world you want to live in. 

Whatever.

Give me a glass of wine and a good time.

So. Giving myself permission.

Just so you know.

It might get ugly. Or better. Who knows! Aren't you tempted to join me? 

Mwa ha ha....!!!

~~~

Okay. That being said. On to the paintings.

I got into a dripping phase. Dripping paint down the canvas. Two paintings ended up being defined by these drips. One I shared earlier but I'll share them both here now together.



They have an eerie quality to them. Spooky, yet powerful. I don't know. What do you think?

The other phase that I have gotten into (yes, two paintings count as a phase) are dots . Although I have dabbled with them before in the past.

Dots. Lots of 'em!

I am drawn in a very powerful way to contemporary Aboriginal art from Australia. The works are perhaps described as more representational or symbolic. There is a style that involves many many dots and symbols unique to that culture and place, yet are also universal. Images that represent actual physical locations on Earth and also ethereal places from the Dreamtime. I don't know if I am describing it very well, you can learn more about it here.

And while my dots and symbols are quite different from those in Aboriginal paintings, they are of course from my life and my own experience in the Dreamtime. Through my paintings and my dots, I am mapping out my world.  We'll see what shows up. Or where these maps take me.



This last one? My favorite I've done so far. 

So that's the painting being done. More in the works.

Stay tuned.

~~~

By the way, Happy Birthday to all the FABULOUS Virgo's out there. 
We're a pretty awesome bunch.

I started celebrating over a week ago. And I will be celebrating all weekend. And beyond. I think a month is the minimum for honoring our incredible selves, n'est-ce pas?

So that's the news in Indigo Land.

What's happening with you?


Thursday, September 6, 2012

On the Meaning of Life and a Kick-Ass Pair of Shoes

Getting rather philosophical today. 

All over a pair of shoes.

~

I LOVE these shoes!


They are a bit out of my budget range at the moment. But that's okay. I can be patient.

But I'm a little confused and freaked out.

I mean, come on. For years I drove a vehicle (a beat-up but well-loved Toyota truck) with the bumper stickers "tree hugging dirt worshipper" and "I {heart} Strawbale Houses." I have spent the last two decades immersed in the world of environmental advocacy, sustainable agriculture, permaculture, natural building and eco-living. "Live simply so that others may simply live" has been my motto. Tread lightly on Mother Earth, my spiritual path.

Yet last Sunday I spent over an hour in Nordstroms trying on expensive perfumes and drooling over thousand dollar handbags. Not to mention the shoes.

WTF?

What's happening to me?

Now, a little background here though. I have always loved beautiful things. Well-made, hand-crafted, artisanal items will always get my love. A fabulously arranged table, a tranquil garden, a perfectly decorated room... The graceful curve of a hand-thrown vase, the exquisite brush stroke detail on a canvas... I have always appreciated this side of life.

Consumerism? Greed? Cheaply made products in the name of a bigger profit margin? Material hunger that fills the void of an unexamined life? Not so much.

Yet here I am. Coveting THINGS. Beautiful things. Well-made things, yes. But THINGS.

How can I go from wanting to save the earth to wanting so spend what would be in many parts of this world an entire year's salary on a pair of shoes?

What's going on?

So I've busted out my journal, scribbling fast and furious with all these thoughts pouring out onto the page. I've pulled out the paints and let the canvas and the brush have a visual conversation around these feelings. And I've sat and stared at the stars, listened to the birds in the trees, felt the wind on my face, and savored a hot cup of tea in my hands...

All this, to help me understand this change that is taking place within me.

Why all the angst? Why not just embrace the change and go for it? Well, guilt for one. There are people starving... War and bloodshed... Poverty... Destruction of ecosystems... Exploited and depleted natural resources... I can go on and on. You get my drift.

Yet these perspectives? ~  The simple life. The extravagant life. The impoverished life. Whichever one I see as "right" or "better" or "worse," these are all judgments. Assumptions that one way is prefered over another. Attaching myself to one way over another then implies that I am better for the choices I make. Other choices and other people are wrong. Or for those that are not able to choose, who are dis-empowered, well I can empathize, and advocate, and, well, proselytize. 

Yes. Preach.

Convince others to change what they think. Come over to the other side. Reconsider their choices.

And adhere to a better way. It can be religion, politics, life styles.

But it's all attachment.

All of it.

And so what's wrong with attachment? Isn't there good vs. evil? Rich and poor? Isn't there black and white? Isn't there a great universal moral code handbook that we should all be following? Isn't there a better way we should all subscribe to?

So I ask. Who would write this book? Who would have the authority about what to include or exclude? Would every single culture and inhabitant on this planet have a say about what went in it? Would it be human-centric? What about the animals? Would they get a voice? The trees? And would it change over time? Wouldn't history show us the error of our ways? Wouldn't it need to be updated? How often?

The anthropologist-geek in me sees life through this multi-faceted approach. Wanting to consider the voice of others. How would they describe the same thing I see? How would their perspective differ? How would the lens through which they see the world result in a different set of ethics than my own? 

So how can any one person or group claim the right to decide how others should live?

Whether it's over private property rights or the right to hug trees, how can one group or person be right all the time? Is there a "right" anyway? Will their ever be universal agreement?

These are the thoughts that I am holding up to the light these days.

How in the world do they relate to my new-found desire to buy expensive shoes (you may or may not be asking yourself at this point)?

Personally? I am currently healing a very deep wound around lack. Releasing the old mantra that doing without for the greater cause is my duty. That I deserve no more. That simplicity is the better path. Because I am realizing that simplicity has many definitions, depending on who you ask. That my going without does not in fact lift others up. It's a twisting, winding path. Not straight forward. And hardly simple.

Basically, for me, here's what it boils down to. I am one girl. One woman. One person. Doing the best I can to live the life I am here to live.

I am doing the best I can.

And so is everyone else.

No matter what it looks like from my perspective.

"Walk a mile in someone's shoes..."

All I can do is release the judgment I hold against myself and others for how they are living their lives. How I am living mine. 

All I can do, is walk in peace. And let others walk peacefully as well.

With compassion. With kindness.

Without judgment.

But dammit, I can walk in kick-ass-sexy shoes if I so choose.
  



Sunday, September 2, 2012

Blogging has taken a back seat once again.

It's been an odd couple of months, blogging wise. Wanting to share. Not sure what to share. The boundaries between being open, vulnerable, authentic... and yet respecting others' who may not want to read about their lives here. Finding the balance? Not really. So just stayed quiet.

Ready to share again.

It's been a busy time. Lot's going on. But I have been determined to not let the many facets of daily life - the day to day details that must be seen to - get in the way of adventure, creativity, and time for myself.

A little recap of what's been happening...

Here is a painting I finished recently. It's very sparkly because of the flash. Actually a fun effect that I wasn't aiming for.

(new painting)

I also needed to have some travel fun. It feels like travel has fallen way down on the list of priorities over the years. It used to be number one. I miss it. It's partially due to finances. But also seeking other paths and exploring different avenues. Time to move it up on the list again. I took my son to visit my brother and Los Angeles. For Ian it was a the chance to soak up big city life. He loves him some skyscrapers. Fortunately my brother lives right in the middle of the historic district of downtown LA. Heaven for one little 7 year old.

(Ian with his Uncle Scott, on the rooftop of my brother's apt. building)

For me it was a bit of a nostalgic visit, having grown up in Los Angeles. We drove around all the the familiar sites and scenes - same yet different - with 80's alternative rock as the background soundtrack. Took me right back.

We did big city things...  

Hanging out at cafes.

(cafe time)

Took in the art scene.

(second Saturday art walk, downtown LA)

 Had sushi in Little Tokyo.

(Ian's favorite sushi, he always amazes me)

And we did touristy things too...

That's the Hollywood sign back there on those hills.

 (I grew up looking at those antenna towers on the top of those hills, but from the other side)

 We saw a movie in Hollywood too. But no movie stars.

(no one more famous than the muppets)

And we had to go to the beach, of course.

(nothing like the beach)

All in all, a very successful visit! 

A fabulous get-away before school started up.

And this is my son. Love him.

(Ian's desk at school)

As if all that weren't enough going on, this handsome fellow ended up moving in after all (long story).

(Misty)

Unfortunately, The Queen...

(P.C. The Queen."P" standing for precious, pretty, princess, precocious... "C" for cat)

...she is SO not into him. It's been an adventure and a half keeping the peace around here. Territory issues. Feeding issues. Howling in the middle of night issues.  Exhausting. But what can I do? Love those kitties.

And before summer disappears completely, one more adventure. The aunts were in town. We got to spend the afternoon on a boat on the Sacramento river. One of them is not doing so well, so it was a bittersweet day. But the beauty of the river and the joy on my child's face filled me up. Health is something to not take for granted, a reminder that is both hard to remember but so worth remembering.

(on the river)

And finally. 

FINALLY! 

Got a gift of a superb table - thanks KW! Art studio is at last starting to take shape. So I've been dabbling with paint and art journaling (it's been forEVER!).

(Misty gives his blessing of the space)

And generally basking in the goodness that this space holds.

Full moon - blue moon. A blessedly good space.

(view from studio, full blue moon)

Have missed this blogging place.

It's nice to be back.

And VERY excited to be heading towards autumn. 

My most favorite time of year!