Sunday, April 27, 2014

Time and Change and Staying Still and Listening

This weekend the eagles have been boldly swooping down over the newly stocked lake to get their catch of the day. I have never seen eagles so close to me before. It is exhilarating! They seem fearless and courageous, unstoppable. It makes me think about the wonderful Finola, former guide dog trainee black lab, our family's pride and joy. She is still battling her body and wagging through it all. She still has lots of love left in her waiting to be shared, so I know she will beat this most recent health obstacle in classic Finny style!

I have also been thinking about creating the next in my series of sculptures. The creating helps me process all that life seems to throw, and gives me a vehicle to flow through. In the act of creating, I am constantly learning about my life and life itself, the things you can count on, the things that really matter and the fine line between knowing what we want and what we need. 

I have already completed "Letting Go of Holding On". Yesterday I finished sculpting "Tunnel Vision". The previous one I completed in the series, is called "Hope Is A Thing With Feathers". The next one I am anxious to begin sculpting is entitled "Veil of Indifference". What comes next is a mystery to me...

As synchronicity would have it, I fell in love with a fiber wall piece called "Reflection & Refraction" at Om Base Yoga, and couldn't stop thinking about it. I knew she had to come home with me!
When I met the artist Vicki Mcardle, who to my surprise works at my yoga studio, we connected instantly in spirit, vision and process. I look so forward to getting to know her better. She is also the perfect fit to be my guest artist, to share the gallery with me for my next exhibit (yes I am already working toward that!) next February. I love when things align and you have your eyes open and seize the moment, recognizing that this is fate speaking.

Right now feels like such a time of change, a state of flux, more turbulent than most. I was discussing this with a fellow yoga practicer Friday, about how there is such a shift in things, both good and bad and in between, at this tumultuous time. Still, I am trying to stay still and listen within. The sun is out one moment, and the rains pour down the next, as if the skies have opened up, to wake us up. There have been many more earthquakes, and things seem to be shifting all around us. Sometimes we feel like we are moving forward, sometimes moving backward, sometimes walking in place and sometimes falling through the cracks.

I am trying to stand strong, rooted, filled with trust and faith that things will soon quiet and settle, until the next shift is upon us. Right now it is pouring outside. It calls for me to stay inside, not only in the house but inside myself, my personal house. It feels yin, quiet, inward today, and I am compelled to read, reflect and be. To refill refuel myself to begin the next sculpture. To allow what is, be. To not put the effort into fighting the flow to make it any different. I am tired of "playing salmon" and swimming upstream, fighting the unstoppable current. Today I choose to float down the river without effort. Wouldn't it be wonderful if I could heed that inner calling every day? But wait.....I can! I can make that choice.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Gift of Vision

Waking up slowly to the clear sky, the smell of coffee brewed a few hours ago as the fisherman left to find the catch of the day, I step out onto the deck, hooded and fleeced, looking at the ripples in the lake, wondering how much of the rippling is due to my vision. The fear still lingers, although I am beginning to see clearer but not much more so than before the surgery. Not a distorted but quite blurry none the less. I swat at the floaters, unable to distinguish between them and an insect flying by. I plant some herbs, clean my studio after a day of sculpting yesterday. 
It was a challenging day of sculpting. What began as an introspective sculpture about the process I am going through from the eye surgery when I began this second in the series, this time brought up a lot of rage and drained me quite a bit. The first one I created before the surgery came out very differently than I initially envisioned. I became more about hopefulness than fear. I think it will be entitled Hope Is A Thing With Feathers, an ode to Emily Dickenson. The next sculpture I will create will be called Veil of Indifference. This current one I am making though,  deals with another type of vision, the vision of not feeling "seen" and questioning the way I see others and my relationships. I struggled with it, liking it, hating it, picking at it, trying to make it perfect and then surrendering to it not being meant to be perfect. It is meant to be distorted, painful, misshapen, not what I thought it would be. I allow the "non-beauty" of what wants to come out in it emerge and let it become what it needs to become. I have left it moist and covered, and will see how she speaks to me when I return to it next. It has spent me.

I set out in my kayak, onto the quiet lake that seems to be all my own. There is the sound of the occasional mower or the sound of chatting being carrying across the lake, but the lake is all mine. After a brief while of paddling, I paddle with my eyes closed, feeling the breeze, hearing the splashing, just wondering what it feels like to "see" the lake, feel the lake, with eyes closed. I wonder if I can "feel" myself paddling straight on course without the vision that my eyes give me, but instead the vision of intuition. We take so much for granted with our vision. 

After coming back to the dock, I  climb onto the hammock anxious to read the yet to be released copy of "Parentheses". It has been so long since I read a "book" and not my Kindle with the enlarged print, and high contrast of black on white. I have a magnifying strip that I try to read through, but although it enlarges the print, it distorts it, something that is all too familiar and quite unwelcome. As I read, two deer come meandering by, I pause, I watch. I savor their gentle peacefulness.

 I move onto the the dock to soak up the sun as I continue to read. More floaters appear in my eye and I feel the strain as I look out over the water, but I cannot stop reading. I am pulled into this world of life, death, birth, a ride that I cannot get off of, and don't want to leave. I am compelled beyond what I have ever experienced. There is so much that feels familiar, so much that is revealed, so many emotions that lie beneath Fred's surface, that created a buoyancy for my own emotions. I must stop, digest, try to see more clearly, both through my thoughts and my eyes. There is an increased cloudiness when I look up over the water. I told myself I would read in short spurts, as my eyes adjusted and healed, but I cannot seem to stop. 

So I stop to write, hoping that this process brings me more clarity. Writing in the sunlight makes it difficult for me to see the contrast on the keyboard, so I touch type, I will correct it later. Instead I am allowing myself to "feel" the words and emotions that this time of reading the first 80 pages evoked in me. I was told by another woman who has already had the gift of reading the book, that her life has been forever changed. I can see why. I welcome the journey into the remaining 300 pages as I learn more about Fred and in doing so learn more about myself. Quite a timely gift has been bestowed upon be. I will savor it. My eyes are telling me it is time to rest and digest, and I will listen to them and listen inward. A new vision.