|selfie no.19 of selfie no.13.|
Maybe all this blog ever was or will be is a reference to someone else saying something better than I feel I can, but isn't everything we ever have to say just a response to someone, something. We let thoughts, words, images, life settle in on us, and then we respond? We are just part of an eternal conversation. We are just part of everything else.
It is when I stop responding that I begin to self-destruct. It is when I stop believing that I have something to add, that I am part of the conversation, that I just stop.
I cannot continue at a rate of invisible. I cannot be without contributing. I cannot be understood without speaking.
A wise woman once told me to give myself permission to join the conversation. What will it take for me to join the conversation? What will it take?
Every day, I practice breathing. Some days I do it well - I am thoughtful, mindful, just breathing. Some days I gasp for air having let the outside world stifle me, speak for me, take away from my intention, take away from me. Every day that I practice, I get better at being. Every day I set my intention, I am better at being me.
It didn't take long to draw this selfie of me. Maybe 15 minutes, and then I started editing too much at which point I stopped. Somehow I knew when to stop. But it took me two weeks to prepare. It took me many many excuses. It took me doing a lot of other things instead, washing a lot of dishes, watching a lot of tv, letting a lot of other things force themselves in front, before me, first. And it took getting over a shyness. Looking at myself. 18 days of photos so far. Some days I took many photos, and a few days, I took one, and just posted, acted, did.
It took a lot of days of selfies before I thought of Frida Kahlo with her unibrow and broken back, her sadness and her passion, and her color, her brilliant colors. What is it about her colors that make me so happy in all that sadness? I close my eyes and see the flowers curl out from her, reaching into her body, her soul, and blooming beautiful petals of color, pulling more beauty out of a broken body, a broken heart.
Mary Oliver asks "what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"
Perhaps I will draw flowers around me, letting them cascade and tumble and reach, sweet peas in the sun. They will be stronger, rooted deeper for all the days of cold their tiny scratched seeds endured. They will be stronger for all the days of rain falling on them, feeding them, and giving them time, time for intentions and mindfulness and breathing.