Fuck, yeah, I’m excited! I’m relaxing on a hammock with a man who thrills me, overlooking beautiful, lush greenery and a gigantic lake in Guatemala, where I will be dancing twice a day for a week! Woo hoo! Truth be told, I’ve been excited about this for a long time, and I am thrilled it’s finally happening!
Today is the final day for this module of Core Connexion teacher training. I’ve been dancing all week, going deeper, growing. Yesterday I discovered a power animal for myself: a giant snake – an anaconda, perhaps? We do many exercises apart from dancing, and one was a 5-minute poem or text based on 5 words: bones, breath, spirit, tree and movement. I finally understood what some people go through when they are supposed to do a drawing exercise, yet are under the belief that they can’t draw. My first thought was, “I don’t write poetry.” As it turns out, I am pretty happy with it. So I guess I do write poetry.
In the movement of the tree,
I see the breath of me.
In the stillness of the tree,
I sense the bones.
In the silence of the tree,
I hear my spirit.
In the body of the tree,
I feel whole.
Today I am grateful for:
- the support I get from my back, my legs, my feet
- being in good enough shape (I’m referring mainly to my back here) to dance for 7 days straight
- having the opportunity to dance for 7 days straight (I am grateful to my mother-in-law for picking up the kids and making dinner, and for having the financial means to make this happen)
- allowing myself to become fully present during dance
- from yesterday, the qualities I discovered I have within myself: stillness, fun, groundedness, rest, growth, connectedness, playfulness, flexibility, and curiosity.
- intimate connections on the dance floor
Happy Birthday to my amazing, beautiful, creative and inspiring mother, a.k.a. MA! My mom has given me so much: my love of rainbows, my competitive streak, my parenting style, my scoliosis survival, my knitting and crochet knowledge, my love of yarn and books, and the list goes on and on. Thank you Ma, for everything you do. I love you. xoxo
Today, I am grateful for:
1. My mom spending last week with us and taking care of the kids and cooking while I danced for 6 days straight during the Core Connexion teacher training! My mom rocks!
2. Spending the weekend dancing with my BFF, Angela!
3. The supportive and wonderful dance community.
4. Warm weather is back!
5. My back supports me.
6. The feeling of slipping between freshly laundered, high thread count, sheets. Oh, and our amazing mattress.
Lately I’ve been painting safe. Painting for others. Painting what I think other people want to see. What evidence do I have that staying safe will actually help me? None, actually. What evidence do I have that taking a risk will benefit me? Surprisingly, there is some; the paintings that people respond to the most, are the ones that I have painted from my heart, rather than my head. They are the ones that piss me off, make me angry, and the ones that I dislike the most. But they are also the ones that people respond to, and the ones that people want to buy. I guess it makes sense; if I’m feeling something as I paint, you’ll feel something when you look.
This is my goal now – to paint more from my body, less from my head. Paint what I like, not what I think others will like. It sounds so simple, but sometimes it isn’t easy. Using watercolors forces me to accept what is happening – they are harder to control than acrylics. I’m going to start playing more, and accepting more and using more watercolors. Oh, and dancing before I paint, to help me get out of my head.
After taking the intuitive painting workshop with Michele Cassou, I thought that I had to keep this kind of painting separate from my “work painting”. Now I am not so sure. This is all an experiment. I’ll let you know how it goes!
I just had an exciting day! I am showing some of my paintings at the Signal Hill Library for Alberta Arts Days. I was there this morning, along with many of the other artists showing their work. In the first hour, I sold 3 of my paintings! One of them is a framed watercolour for $300! I am super excited about selling that piece, because it is from last year, and I probably won’t be showing those works again! Most of them I now donate for silent auction events. What else can I do with art that hasn’t sold? Any ideas? I also had several people who took my cards and seemed very interested to purchase at a later date. I’ll be back there again tomorrow from 1-3. I hope it’s as successful as today was!
About a year ago, a good friend asked me if I would make a painting and incorporate one of her poems into it. I procrastinated and then I let the email get lost in the forgotten land of “come-back-to-later” emails. Then I recently decided to start reading email only if I am ready to take the action required by reading it (inspired by a podcast I heard over at Creative Coconuts). With this in mind, I cleaned up all the old emails, and found the one from my friend. Yikes. Had it been a commission from a stranger, it surely wouldn’t have taken so long. Why do friends and family get such poor service? It’s so easy to say, “They’ll understand”, I guess.
I think I procrastinate with commissioned work because I am worried it won’t work out, or the customer won’t like it. It’s so much easier to have people just like the work I make for myself, and that’s that! But anyway, I really wanted to do this for her, not only because she is my friend, but because she said I inspired her to write the poem. How cool is that? We used to dance together on a weekly basis at Core Connexion (BTW: my hands are in the banner of the Core Connexion website – how cool!), but she doesn’t come out much anymore. I miss seeing her there!
What I learned from this experience: nothing ever takes as much time as I think it will. Turned out that I had a painting that was all ready to go, and just had to add the poem on top! I am happy to say that my friend was very pleased with the result. Yay! Here is how it turned out.
OK, yeah, I did it. I think it stopped when I stopped searching for a guy to share my life with. The year I had twins, I am pretty sure I stopped looking in the mirror altogether. For some reason, I did it again last week, and I wasn’t impressed. I realized pretty quickly that I had two choices: 1) Keep inspecting and find all my imperfections, then begin to hate myself because of them OR 2) Accept that I have imperfections, but stop looking for them and move on. I chose #2.
Now, don’t go thinking that I have fully accepted everything about physical being, because I certainly have not. It seems like it will take a life-time to completely accept my wrinkled belly, even though I know I should be grateful for how well it served as a home to three babies. I can’t really see myself ever wearing a bikini. And my freakin’ hair is driving me nuts (it’s the growing it out phase of my hair cycle… might quickly become the shave it-all-off-again phase). But I want to be accepting of myself and how I look. I also want to accept how my body works. Or doesn’t.
My back is crooked again. This has been on-again, off-again since Dec. 2008 (my back has a longer history, though, with surgery for scoliosis when I was almost 13), when I found out about my disc problem. I am no longer surprised when it happens, but I still get discouraged. I went to dance last night (as I do every week) because it’s usually my place to release stress and have fun. I knew I wouldn’t be able to move like usual, but I really let it get to me last night, with tears and all, keeping myself apart from the group. I guess I needed that. Once again, I saw it as two choices, just like with the mirror. I decided to move on, and surrender my situation. I was finally able to dance with everyone for the last few songs. As usual, Mike’s facilitation seemed to speak right to me, since he spoke of surrender, and allowing our bodies to move without effort. I so needed those words.
It always surprises me, but I am kind of grateful for my crooked back. Because of it, I have compassion for other people who can’t physically do what they feel they should be able to do. I am more grateful for my good days, when body feels strong. I am grateful for my children for keeping me from dwelling on my suffering.
If only I could be grateful for zits.
On a different note (how else do you segue from zits to music?), I have been listening to DiRTY RADiO non-stop for the last week. Once I hook onto something I like, I obsess and listen to it to death. Proud to say it’s Canadian music! Oh, and he can hit the high notes – why do I always love when guys can hit high notes?? I might have a little crush on him (yes, hubby knows about my crushes, it’s all good). Happy dancing!