Wednesday, December 29, 2004

western society and over abundance

I have really weird and changing sleep patterns. I don’t remember ever being a solid sleeper even when I was on antidepressants for six years (yes, perpetuating the stereotype that artists are depressed people, I know..). I should be working today…. I feel out of my body today. I wake up over and over throughout the night. The recent tsunami disaster has really effected me. I so internalize images that they become their own life in my mind and its like I was there. I have to be diligent about what I allow myself to see, hear and think…it can consume me and I spiral completely out of control.
I have been thinking about our well off western society and our over abundance and consumerist way of life and how that way of life creates in us an weakness, an inability to understand the suffering of others or at least we are able to momentarily feel and then just as quickly turn it off and go to Starbuck’s. In thinking about what to DO…what I can do about this tragedy over and above contributing financially to aid, which is the American way…write a check and its fixed….I found that by entering into the grief of the people who have been a part of it I can do something more. Sympathy is a big thing, isn’t it? And somehow in my high walls and soft clothing when I can enter into that pain God sees it and the incense of that grief goes up before Him and we enter into the human condition of the destiny of inevitable and certain loss

Monday, December 27, 2004

living in reality

Living in reality is a challenge for me. I am a realistic person, but my creative mind takes me to all four corners of my brain….at all times. Dreams are intensely detailed and colored.. much like novels. Constant imagined places, people and situations ebb and flow in my mind naturally while awake. It is a difficult gift to get control of and I can quickly dissociate from any reality I am in. I don’t lose touch I just go somewhere in my own mind. And honestly I prefer it to reality.. though none of it is real. When I am not sleeping well there is a strange unsettled feeling and I have a hard time staying focused, so getting painting or anything else done is virtually impossible. I have never been able to discipline this imagination and quite frankly it is who I am as an artist. As an artist this ability is essential to my work but guilt that comes with it in a conventional society is at times overwhelming. I still struggle to accept this gift a gift. Apparently my personality type comprises a very small percentage of the population. I was relieved to read the studies about personality types. I can see that its true and have know that from early on. Always thinking that I am the weird one or the outsider and why is everyone else so normal. So, all this to say that I have produced little real work today… I am in the zone.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

I knew this person in Atlanta who was a bit of an environmental nut. Her blood would begin boil when she saw anyone driving an SUV. I have to confess that I too have a rise in my blood temperature at the sight of one of those obnoxious, huge consumerist fuel burning machines (which by the way are usually driven by a woman who doesn’t know how to handle it). And when they have a few of the myriad of environmental stickers on the back its even more ridiculous. So, those SUVs are like lepers to her. Everyone has lepers in their life. Each of us has something that we are absolutely unwilling to touch or accept or forgive even. Mine would be the act of anyone throwing trash out of their car or worse yet flicking a cigarette on the ground. I have a fond memory 8in my B.C. days of following someone to a traffic light and throwing the offending butt back in through their car window stating, "You dropped something". I have more self control now, but it is something that I never could understand or comprehend. It is, in my opinion, the height of arrogance, laziness and inconsideration and something that says VOLUMES about a person. Sitting in Panera the other day I watched a woman take one last drag out on the sidewalk and throw that lit cigarette into the sidewalk before coming inside. You know how you make movies of yourself? I made a movie of myself like Jesus in the temple. I jumped out of my seat and started the grand confrontation about the offense…..sandwiches and soup bowls flying everywhere……in my indignation. And she felt really bad about it and learned a lesson.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

new home

I am glad we moved. I regularly heard from others that have relocated how hard it is. We have not had that experience. The essential element of faith put into practice has rescued us from any tangent pathway and kept us firmly on the destiny that God has for us. It is so obvious to me now.

I have found people to be interested, friendly and relational here, an environment we lacked for the most part back in Atlanta. I have gotten to know more people here in the last month than I ever did in the last five years there. I now feel like a Virginian (once again). The amount of interest in my work has been encouraging too. So it comes to light that all the concerns I have written here and said so many times are unfounded and through countless small things I have seen God meet me in answer to each one.

To most this seems a small thing, but I regularly lamented about the dark apartment we lived in for four years in Atlanta.. an old complex. I always felt that sunlight had a great impact on how I worked and felt. We looked out at the other building across the parking lot. This is what we get to see now on the third floor out of our huge sliding glass doors each morning as the sun comes up and streams in to our home. So, this very small thing that mattered so much to me God took notice off and remedied.