Thursday, May 27, 2010

the sea of big feelings

In response to a wonderful post on Creating Wings

i am a big feeler.

always respond to things with strong gusts of emotion, buffetted and sometimes even shifted by them...

which like a plant is tough on a sapling, but as a plant grows that buffetting makes the roots strong, creates a tree which is deeply rooted and strong in it's hold on the planet

those big emotions scare me - mostly because they scare other people. I learned long ago to value the reactions of others over my own. Not to trust the feelings i recieve but to check with others first before i decide.

i am only learning that that approach doesn't serve me. That measuring on the scoreboards of others means i am always playing an "away game". I never have my home crowd support, never play on my own playing feild...don't have a chance to develop my own cheerleader team.

i am discovering i don't need the approval of others to be safe.

If i see these strong feelings they are vast.

They are like a sea. A big sea of feelings.

And i see now that it is safe to float on this sea. I see that my boat can manage those conditions, big waves and all.

It is true that i feel scared sometimes bobbing around in that big sea of feelings but who knows what wonderful lands i might reach if i don't keep myself tethered to other people's shores.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

tell a story tuesday

i decided while i was away to make an effort to write here - really try and tell stories

because stories are the essence of life

we are all just one big collection of stories

and some of them are true

my story today is about when we got the poodle

Simon and i had gone out to the chaotic house where she was born to choose a puppy.

About 5 barking bouncing balls of fluff, in various stages of dishevellement greeted us on the muddy driveway.

We picked our way to the back door over poodles trying to act as canine tripwires and assorted toys. The breeder opened the door with her 2 day old baby in her arms and looking a little on the weary side she managed to corral us inside and the poodle army outside.

Shouting to her older daughter she cleared a spot for us to sit and we watched as the teenager ushered in a small black poodle who was looking anxiously at the box in the girls arms. A box full of puppies.

There were 6. They were 6 weeks old and their eyes had just opened. They tumbled together, unsure about the little fluffy legs and just how to lift their enormous heads. But more by good luck than good management one little one wobbled out.

i could tell which end was which because i could just pick out a tail, but as she stood their shivering we chose her.

She still shivers when she is unsure.

When i am less conscientious with grooming than i should be she still looks a little like a pushmepullyou.

But she fills our house with poodle love and every day welcomes us with utter joy that we are still in her life...

The twink they had to mark her head with to tell her apart from the others faded after a few weeks but the knowledge that we had made a good choice never has


Monday, May 17, 2010

the sound of joy

these to me are the sound of joy

skylarks singing

babies laughing

cats purring

guinea pigs chattering

tui swooping and chortling

a quiet "i love you" next to my ear

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


This month i have:

Watching my father almost die and spend 3 weeks being confused and scared, spectre of a rest home knocking at his door. (THANK THE GODDESS I TOOK HIM HOME TODAY!)

Daily contact with my mother who is corrosive to my heart

family meetings, negotiations, shouting matches

having to hold boundaries, avoid damage, ask for help

2 girls feeling the strain and not knowing why they feel tired, grumpy, scared...

A family wedding that i just couldn't be fully present for (which i got bad marks for - judges score cards- 3, 2.5, 3)

Health scares - one passing fleetingly, the other (boob issues) looming


stinky pits

no time to create

reaching 45

i have been down deep

like a diver who goes down meters into the ocean

the pressure around me has been immense

as i sit on this borrowed computer i think about decompression

(I have a friend who dives on oil rigs in the North Sea)


• noun 1 reduction in air pressure. 2 the process of decompressing.

i need to take time in my decompression chamber (ie: studio, bed, bath, beauty therapist, basking in the love of friends)

because i am going to avoid

decompression sickness

• noun a serious condition that results when too rapid decompression causes nitrogen bubbles to form in the tissues of the body.

at all costs

i love my life and i want to be well

Saturday, May 8, 2010

creativity is a bossy friend

I have already established that i have a girlycrush on creativity

But i also want to be honest about what kind of friend she is...

there is no other way to say it

she is bossy

She comes into my life when she feels like it

She interrupts conversations, dinner, showers even a trip to the toilet

she demands my immediate attention

otherwise she stalks off in a huff.

i need to be ever ready to carry out her whims, at the very least writing down or sketching her demands,

because if i don't have time right when she shows up she cuts me off.

What she says goes. She is the the one who calls the shots wears the pants holds the reins...

Oh, there are times when i really want her to come over.

I send out invitations,everything is set up to make her comfortable, make her feel welcome...

her favourite brushes ready, nice clean canvas, tools all sharp, peace and quiet

and she is just busy elsewhere...

(someone more interesting or capable i tell myself more than a little jealously)

because she does taunt me with her relationships with others...

skill and ideas and new ways of doing things that appear so effortless to other artists (i mean real artists of course - because seeing her flirt outrageously with others always makes me feel down on myself) always let me see that she is showering her love on someone else...

ok so i am pouty with her sometimes

but i am still willing to be her friend even if she is flirty with others, even if she gets all the attention, even if i am in her shadow ...

because bossy, demanding, unfaithful and snooty as she is

she makes my life better

Thursday, May 6, 2010

being the vessel

after 3 tough weeks for me i see my family taking the strain

even though i do most of my running to and from the hospital and dealing with all that needs to be dealt with when they are away at school and work

they are still feeling it

i think i am the vessel of the energy for the family

if my reserves are low, if i am depleted, if i am feeling called far outside myself

they notice

It is not conscious

they are not able to tie the things they are feeling with the strain i am taking but it is certainly there

when i am up they are more resiliant

when i am empty they are more likely to feel abraided, distressed - mostly in an formless kind of way

but it is no less real...

so more than for survival

more than for my soul

i need to plant me feet firmly on the ground, reach into the well that feeds me - creativity, connection to spirit, my beautiful surroundings and i need to drink deeply.....

for their sakes as well as mine

Monday, May 3, 2010

this is what stirred me up so much

it is called motherhood

Sunday, May 2, 2010

creativity - the dangerous friend

do you ever feel like creativity can be a dangerous friend?

you know like the one at school that always seemed more streetwise

who would smoke in the feild at school

who would have sex because it felt good

who would know more than the teacher

and let them know it.

I feel like a bit of a sychophant to creativity at the moment.

I talk about her and think about her alot.

I do courses to find out more about her.

I feel like i have a crush on her.

But this wanting to be friends with someone more knowing than i am, more adventurous than i have been,

someone who will lead me away from nice and pretty and tidy

into places where dark things lurk

has me on edge...

literally i am on the edge of stepping onto another place to stand

what will i find?

what will come with me?

what will i leave behind?

and how will i feel inside my life when i have recovered my footing after such a big leap?

The phrase "naked and bleeding on the Jericho road" from Maevensong seems most appropriate... and runs over and over in my head

i just hope creativity is prepared to take me into her temple and bathe my wounds in the spring like Maeve

and not leave me in the middle of the school quad, looking like a dork, with all the cool kids laughing at me....

Being seen

"People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered; forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives: Be kind anyway. What you spend years creating others could destroy overnight: Create anyway. If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway. The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway. Give the best you have, and it may never be enough: Give your best anyway. In the final analysis, it is between you and God: it was never between you and them anyway."

- Mother Teresa, a Saint.

Mother Teresa reminds me that no matter how unseen i feel i am always seen

even when i know no noble prize is in the offing i am seen...