my . artist run website

Return to Broke-open Art Blog

Day 38

 

All day I've been telling people it's been 37 days that I have been carrying the chair. Hmmm. Also today I forgot the chair for the second time. I met my husband for a quick cup of coffee before going on to meet up with a friend and I forgot to take the chair out of the car! Wow.... Hmm...

 

Anyway, had a great conversation with my gastroenterologist about the chair. I was afraid to take it into the Dr.'s office because they can sometimes be a bit intimidating anyway but I took it in and he was great. He had lots of questions, got the whole story and was very enthusiastic about the project. Also impressed that it'd been "37" days. (I am having a follow up check on an adenoma that was removed in my duodenum - ie. upper endoscopy).

 

I don't really have much to note tonight. I am very tired. It's been an exhausting couple of weeks and today was a busy day off. I did a lot off the stuff around the house that I've been putting off and then painted my day 4 of the 30 in 30 challenge. Well, first I painted a crap painting I just needed to get out of my system. Then I painted the real painting. It's of the old woodshed on my parent's farm. I love that old building but like many of the old farm buildings, it has been left to the Minnesota elements without repair and so is falling down. Felt good to painted it. Respectful of it's history. It's probably 100 years old.

 

I met with my friend Carol today. As always, we had a great time exploring life. The part I want to note here was when I talked about carrying the chair up the hill walking the dog and seeing my shadow. I told Carol this was very humbling then I mixed in the word "humiliation" as I talked about it. She is a master word-smith. Very few people I have met can consistently use the precise word every utterance to express what it is they are trying to express. Carol is one of those people (my daughter is too). It strikes me often-times how delightful it is to hear people like Carol speak. Well today she explored and took me along with her, the words Humility and Humiliation. And in the end we both agreed they really have nothing to do with eachother in terms of meaning. Humility, she said is a word of gratitude. It's a beautiful word. While Humiliation is painful and tragic, shame-based. The word Humiliation really should not be from the root Humility at all. 

 

I liked that. I have always loved the word Humility. It is a deeply spiritual word in my mind; and it does relate to gratitude. While, yes, humiliation is judgement, ridicule, shame. 

 

The Fear Chair is about humility, not humiliation. It is about gratitude too really. Someone today assured me she is making a change in life "without fear." She emphasized this as she looked at my chair. I know people still look at the chair and at me as if I have all this tremendous amount of Fear and just need to let it go or something. But the Chair, again, is not just about letting go of Fear. It is about doing what artists do, we take what is inside and we get it out. We make it seen. I am taking the burden of Fear that I carry inside (and have all my life) and express it through the chair. And really, I LOVE the chair. Does that mean I LOVE my Fear? Perhaps I do. Perhaps I am learning to have compassion for myself, for my Fear and am finding that I can love that part of me too. I've never felt that before. I've pitied myself in my fearS and in my Fearfulness; but I have never held Fearful self in Love and simply allowed it to be. I have never cared for my Fear. Carried it with care, like I carry the Chair. 

 

Does this mean I am "In Love" with my Fear or that I want to cuddle and coddle my Fear? No, of course not. It simply means I - am - allowing  me to be more whole. I am not running or hiding or stuffing a part of myself I used to feel humiliated (shame) about. I think it will become a much smaller monster because I have befriended it. It already has.