Tag Archives: Self care

Getting Brave

As I work through therapy, a lot of things have come up. One of them is challenging the overwhelming messages I received as a child that I wasn’t good enough. In therapy one of the questions asked was what I would do if I felt I was good enough.

Taking my art more seriously was my first answer.

Overall I am pretty confident and strong. I learned over the years to be true to myself, to not let even the most overbearing people erase who I am. Yet still, certain messages persist – trepidation about criticism because I have received so much of it.

I want to move on completely from my childhood. Some things are just toxic, and sometimes beneath the surface of the beautiful pond is something grimy and filled with leeches. Sometimes things don’t work.

Yet to truly move on I have to get rid of the negative emotions and negative ideas I got from those years of my life. In most childhoods there is something good to be gleaned and that is true of my own childhood as well. I received an upbringing of good manners, as well as an emphasis on academic excellence that served me well as an ambitious student. There were definitely positive things about my upbringing. However, many of the messages I received were critical, unkind, and demoralizing. My basic needs were met, and I am grateful for that, but I was not liked or even particularly loved.

It’s time to take my art more seriously. And in answering the prompt in therapy about what I would do if I knew I was good enough I actually ended up coming up with a list of over 40 items. Some of them were very big and important and some of them were very small, but there were over 40 things I would do if I could get past the echoes of my younger life. It’s time to start doing those things. I am 30, and I don’t want to spend the rest of my life stuck in the same headspace I was in in middle school. Tomorrows are never guaranteed, so I want to make the most of today.

I go through my day expecting censure and ridicule. But is that really fair? It’s no way to live, and not everyone is going to be out to criticize me. And if they do criticize me it doesn’t matter. I’m not trapped in a house with someone who criticizes me all the time nor am I economically dependent on them. If some random stranger on the internet or a local mom I don’t know that well has something to negative to say about me oh, who cares?

There are so many things on my list to go through. Another major thing I need to address is my inability to trust people. That’s pretty important. Some things on the list are just small though, but they would make me really happy. For instance, I always really want to wear glitter on my cheeks or my arms. That’s not the most important thing in the world, but it would feel so nice to do it. As a kid I loved the idea of body glitter, but when I received a bottle of it from a friend in middle school I was told even then that I was too old for it and shouldn’t be wearing it and that it was silly. It’s time to get past the point in life where I really care who thinks it’s silly. It’s my body and my money and I’ll wear whatever I damn well please. To reiterate the point, whether or not I can wear glitter is not a life-or-death issue and is not earth shattering. It’s glitter. But the idea behind this is very important. I’m not doing something I really want to do, something I would have fun with and enjoy, because of the criticism of others.

I have a lot of things I want to work through and so far therapy has been helping. I was in therapy years ago and although it helped me with certain issues, it did not help me with everything I would have liked help with. This time around it has been really productive so far.

Incredible Cloth Planet

Our wonderful babysitter came today to take care of Angelica and give me a break. I used the day creatively, and I have discovered a new favorite place.

I decided to look up local fabric stores because I wanted a transparent fabric to use as a screen over my camera lens. It’s probably a silly idea but I really want to experiment with some different things and that’s one of the things I want to try. I found a local store on the other end of town and I decided to give it a shot. The place was magical! Fabric prints I had never even imagined. Beautiful buttons. Sequins and other embellishments. Sheer curtains that I can use a screens. Solid cloth that will make excellent backgrounds for still life and book photos. I cannot sew or quilt but this place was Heaven.

I wanted to buy a few things to bring back to the house and play around with, but it is a store owned by an older couple. I was wandering down the aisles in joyful shock when the old gentleman came and said that they had shut down their computers and we’re closing so did I need anything. I went out to the car and found out it was 15 minutes before they were supposed to close. They just decided to close up shop early! I will have to go back. I’ve never seen such an amazing fabric collection. I am used to big chain stores. This out does those by a long shot.

I am so pleased to have found some place new that I like to go, and I got some pictures while I was there. That isn’t the only creative thing I did though. I tried out a park on the north side of town that is supposed to have beautiful ponds and beautiful views. I got a few good pictures, but the north side of town is still coated in snow and driving through the park just wasn’t safe. I couldn’t even figure out where the ponds were. I’m happy for the few photos I got but I am definitely going to have to come back in better weather. That was too rough to be driving around in. Snow, ice, mud, gravel. Nothing paved.

While at home I decided to start altering photographs that I have had printed. I’ve been using watercolor and alcohol ink. I might use some acrylic paints or a lighter later this week. I’ve been altering them and then scanning them to my phone. I don’t know if any of them are turning out well but it’s interesting to do.

Trying to Raise My Mood

Now is the time to put my new planner to the test. I was doing pretty well this morning. We did homeschool lessons, I painted with Angelica, I did housework Etc. I was productive and really enjoying myself. Then I started my afternoon low. Now I’m trying to come back. I feel like my soul slipped out between my fingers. I’m staring at the TV. It’s one of my favorite shows. I still feel like a piece of myself has been rended in a shredder. Somehow I need to get off the sofa.