Challenging times

When you live with chronic pain every single day is a challenge. You’re expected to go on  with life, as if you’re body’s not screaming out for relief. You have to get up, (grumble, grumble), live your daily life just like everyone else, (mumble, mumble), when you just feel like curling up in a ball and crying yourself to sleep. But sleep is darned near impossible because you have a hard time getting comfortable. So, you punch pillows, curse, pray….whatever it takes.

You try to explain to people who couldn’t possibly understand, and they call you a whiner. You feel guilty for mentioning it to your family, when you know they see you struggling. “Hey, uh..did you know I’m in pain over here. Get your own sandwich”.  Add some family drama or other stressful events to this, and you have the perfect setting for a meltdown. (Meltdown is putting it nicely.)

I create so I can feel alive. I want to feel like my existence is more than that of a person who lives with chronic pain. I want to be someone.

For a couple of months, I’ve challenged myself to create something new every morning. You’ll never see some of these things. I don’t feel comfortable sharing them.

My newest challenge is to put everything into my work. All my feelings, all my thoughts, all my hopes, dreams, fears–all that stuff–will be going into my work. Yes, there will be pain. It’s part of my daily existence. 

I wasn’t thinking of angels when I started this digital painting. My thoughts were only on the work I was creating. It was a rare time when I was totally absorbed in what I was doing. As I added the finishing touches, my thoughts went elsewhere. I shared a bit about those thoughts with a close friend. Friends and familyImage make the challenge worth it.


If I could only share one message with you all, it would be to challenge yourselves. Even if that challenge is to just live in whatever moment it is that you’ve been given, really live, even despite the challenges of that moment.

Games people play

I went into the arts. I put myself out there. I’ve reaped some of the rewards of this. I’ve met others, I’ve become more confident, I’ve grown on a personal level, I’ve pushed my own limitations, I’ve learned more about people and how to deal with them. Still, I’ve noticed a disturbing trend in social media. At the risk of sounding like a certain person who uses his TV show to blast everything modern and fun, I’ll tell you more.

I joined a few popular sites for selling my artwork. It seems to me that people will comment on your work or promote it, only for self-promotion. (Not that everyone does it for the wrong motive.)  I find that disturbing. If I genuinely ‘like’ something, I’ll ‘like’ it in the social networking, art-promoting sense. If I honestly want to follow someone’s blog, I’ll follow. I used to follow back, out of a sense of obligation and even guilt. I can’t do that if I want to be true to myself.

Our lawn mower wasn’t working this past week and my husband asked the neighbor if he could borrow his. The neighbor said he would. We went somewhere, came home, and our grass was done. We’ve since had our lawn mower fixed and my husband says he’ll return the favor, it’s ‘the gentleman’s law’.

Does selling art work the same way? How about just being friends? It would seem so on social networks and art-selling sites, not that returning favors is a bad thing. I just don’t want people to ‘like’ my art, to follow me on this or any other site, my art out of a sense of obligation. I also don’t want people, especially other artists, to send me friend requests just to promote their business. I don’t need the fakery and the fuckery, to be blunt.

I need money.  I have medical needs that aren’t covered by insurance. I have lots of things in my personal life that need attended to, can’t be taken care of without cash. Still, I won’t play these games and sell my soul in order to sell art. That’s not who I am, not who I want to be.

If I lose followers and friends for stating how I feel about something that’s important to me, then that’s just the way it is. I’m not into playing games.Image Let’s be real.

You owe me a highly-caffeinated, sugary beverage

I won’t advertise that beverage. I don’t want one, wouldn’t pay to drink something used to clean toilets.  Though, it does taste good with pizza. 😀

When I was a kid it was popular to tell someone they owed you a (insert name of a popular highly-caffeinated, sugary beverage), if they said something the same time you did. Has that ever happened to you?

I suppose I owe a lot of people a (insert name of a popular highly-caffeinated, sugary beverage) because it’s happened a lot. Though, nobody ever actually gave me the beverage they owed me.

There’s a Greek tradition based on the same principle. According to this superstition, touching a red object will spare you an argument with a person who said the same thing you did.

Heed that omen and buy me a  highly-caffeinated, sugary beverage!!!!!  😀

I won’t be buying you one of those. This is the best I can do.

“Piase Kokkino”Image

It’s a choice

Whether or not things happen for a reason, they happen. We can choose to let them make us stronger. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”  I feel it goes a bit deeper than that. I believe we allow it to make us stronger. I don’t think that strength just happens on its own. That choice comes from personal strength. We each have our own ideas of where that strength comes from, according to our own experiences. It’s there, whether or not you feel it.

“She’s strong”