I've spent the last year doing deep deeeep soul work. I've been going away once a month to join a circle of incredible women. Over the year we supported each other in the process of stripping away the layers (and years) of crud to see what the real deal is. What does Joanne feel like when she's not living from a place of fear, for example. A year of working on our 'shit'. And how my shit flew. Instead of hitting the proverbial fan, it actually has been freeing. I'll spare you the details, but needless to say, after an intense year of meditation, dance, performance, writing and soul-illuminating exercises and discussions, I've come through this year feeling better than ever. And yes, it was a bunch of new age hippie dippie juicy goodness. And I highly recommend it. The upshot of the whole year was a reawakening of love: for myself.
Also I've been running a weekly dance evening here called Spirit Moves: Meditation in Motion. An intentional space where we stretch, move, dance, draw, and meditate in a dimly lit space. This is a volunteer gig for me, and it requires many hours each week: mainly putting playlists together and setting up the hall. I'm at the stage where I am re-evaluating my role here. And the amount of energy I have to give.
Plus, for the last 5 months i've been working my butt off. Well, it's still there. But it's much stronger now. Over the course of my adult life, my journey within this physical body has consisted of relentless dieting (though I would never admit to calling it such), compulsive (over) exercising, getting too thin, getting pregnant, gaining weight, losing the weight, getting pregnant again and gaining weight again and on it goes. Through it all I developed a thorough knowledge of calories, fat grams, points, etc. And I developed these 'Rules'. Well about 5 months ago I had enough. I threw out my rule book, for everything actually. But with food and my body I decided to just listen. Use my intuition to guide me- in terms of what to eat, and when. How much exercise is too little or too much. And I'm eating meat again. Not a lot, and what I do eat is the most consciously organic free range stuff I can buy. But meat agrees with me. I've tried everything to keep my iron up on a vegan/veggie diet and I end up sick. Enough making excuses for myself. Long story short: I feel great.
And um, what about painting and art? I'm painting as about a week ago. After a five-month hiatus (while I was focusing on my physical health and exercising in my precious free time), I am back in the studio. What prompted me to get out my paints is the death of our dear dog Sophie, only two weeks ago. One of the hardest experiences so far. I miss her terribly. A quick illness and a peaceful passing provides us with some comfort. The lack of her energy in the house is strange. So the painting I did was an attempt to soothe my soul. And once again, I reached for the paint brush in a time of need.
I hope that sound I heard wasn't your forehead hitting your keyboard. That did go on a bit. Just needed to catch myself up to speed. Art shows this summer and Farmer's Market on Saturdays! Hoorah!