The Writery Ink

This is Me: A Rediscovery

This is Me: A Rediscovery


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It started with a paint night organized by a young friend of mine who is an artist and poet. My excitement had been building for a few days and I had started packing my tools early. Acrylic, watercolor, oil and chalk pastels, paint brushes, pencils, easel, and canvases. I was ready. The day was finally here, and I was bubbling with excitement. Amid the chaos of the holiday rush, I was hoping I could find a moment of peace. I did, in thirty minutes. Sitting on the living room floor, my brush poised in my hand, it dawned on me that I was the oldest person in the room. That was happening more often now, but that’s another story. Three ten-year-olds who could be my grandchildren; thirty and forty somethings who could be my own kids; and me, way over fifty (there was also a newborn, but he slept his way through). A sudden peace settled over me as I began to explore, tentatively. It had been at least ten years since I had put color to canvas and I wasn’t sure I could still do it. The months leading to this moment had been chaotic and I found myself caught in a spin. I had started a new business, a new relationship (rekindled, I should say), and was struggling through a doctoral program. The business journey was a rollercoaster and so was my relationship. There were days I wanted to give up on both, because they were taking so much out of me. My doctoral program was no better; I could not stay motivated to complete. Fortunately, I had a great advisor who got me to the point where I could successfully defend my dissertation proposal. At least, that had settled somewhat. The other two were another matter, but that’s another story for another time. As I sat letting the brushes do their magic on the canvas, a lightness filled me, and I released. I talked the brushes across their journey as I pictured the light and the people reaching toward it. They were women with arms extended upwards, their wispy figures clothed in yellow, red, and blue. These are the women from whom we came, I thought. Their feet are planted in the grass or earth, even as they reach for the light. Wow! I felt connected, even as I felt my burden lift. I felt as if I was creating a masterpiece. Until I saw the one created by one of the ten-year-olds, but that’s another story too. Standing back from my work, I was amazed at what I had done. This is me! I whispered to myself. The affirmations of everyone else in the room raised my levels of elation too high for comfort. A sense of power surged through me. I realized I was no longer afraid; afraid to be me. I might not be truly able to call this a masterpiece in the true sense of the word, but the light emanating from my acrylic on canvas was my release and I found my moment of peace. I know it won’t last because life must be lived. However, I know it is possible to get back to that place where I feel real. I rediscovered the truth of me, and I know that every now and then I will get back there, if only to remind myself that this is me.


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