Wednesday, June 22, 2011
When in doubt, paint
I'm distracted today, pulled in several directions all at once.
On the one hand I can't wait to put on my newly painted chacos, walk around. This is my mother's legacy; a periodic urge to paint. When that feeling comes over me, I will paint whatever is at hand with whatever paint I have handy, just as my mother did. Yesterday I came across a metallic paint, "warm silver" it's called, in a box in the closet. Oh what a gorgeous color. I painted some picture frames with great results. After that I painted a small statue of a Chinese terracotta warrior, then a severed padlock. (It used to lock a big ole gas grill to a pipe in the grotto outside my front door. I love looking at the broken lock - a perfect visual symbol of liberation. It's even better now that it's painted. Really it is!)
Eventually I turned to my shoes. I used to paint all my shoes, even the "nice" shoes, whenever I fell into this frame of mind. I remember when my ex housemate Manuel asked me to hand over my fabric paints so as to keep me from ruining yet another pair of shoes. It was a loving intervention.
It's a compulsion, I guess - though - it could be much worse. I'm not shoplifting or doing drugs, after all. Also want to say, in my defense, that the chacos I painted are not "nice" shoes. I bought them for $1 at a yard sale: no harm done. Actually I am quite pleased with the way they look, including the warm silver cheetah spots around the edges of the soles.
Perhaps I was overcome by the urge to paint because I'm thinking about a couple of clients, dear ones, people I have been working with for many years, both of whom are facing very serious medical crises. One of them has a definitive diagnosis - not a happy diagnosis but at least she knows what she's facing. The other client has no idea what's happening, but it is not good, believe me.
One thing I forgot about during my recent experience of heart opening is that, with an open heart, situations like the predicaments of my beloved clients really get to me. I've always cared deeply for my clients and wished the best for them, but at all times I have remained relatively unmoved emotionally, even when clients died. That kind of emotional distance has its advantages.
It's not as if I'm not being clear, strong and boundaried - indeed my behavior is identical to what it would have been before all the recent heart opening. But I'm worried. I'm feeling how much I love these two women, really feeling it. Yikes! So this is why people close off their hearts!
Not that I'm about to try to reverse the miracles of recent weeks. No chance of that. I know I'm headed in the right direction, or maybe I should say "hearted" in the right direction.
Still - this is hard!
I think I'll post this now, drink some more coffee, then maybe paint some more, yes? I say yes.