Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Internet Saves Lives

Three friends I met over the Net, via our mutual love of creating art, just MAY have saved my life.

One, during a visit f2f, shared a non-narcotic medication with me that actually seemed to make a difference in my miserable pain levels.  I mentioned the drug to another friend who lives in Canada, and she shared the fact that it's OTC up there (I only live a couple of hours away) and then turned around and helped me even further in a way I shall not mention this public place.  And while I was waiting to get some of the drug in hand to see if it really DID work as well as it seemed to during the aforementioned visit, I dropped into a very dark place and couldn't seem to find my way out...until another friend took the time and love to talk with me about all the issues and fears and pain that have been ravaging me for over a decade.  And then, and then...yesterday the Methocarbomal arrived...just in time for another round of extreme pain.  And I took a half of one of the "Extra Strength Muscle & Back Pain Relief" pills, and waited to see what, if any effect they would have.  Ladies and gentlemen, for the first time in longer than I can recount, I had a full night's sleep without waking from pain whenever I shifted!  So absent was the pain, I woke with a start when I *didn't* have a sharp pang when turning to my side.  I lay there for a very brief time in the dark, thinking about how habitualised the pain and my acceptance of it had become, and about what kind of difference it might make in my life to be pain-free for the first time in over fifteen years.  This morning, I awoke with the slightest tickle of pain on the horizon, and found myself almost relieved, saying inwardly "ah...there's my old friend."  And hearing THAT in my head alarmed me more than anything!  To be so acclimatized to pain that it is missed as an "old friend"!?!  The decent into madness is apparently complete.

But the good news?  At the bottom of the dry well was a welcome surprise.  You see, I took another half pill this morning, and as I write this, I am fully pain free!  I keep checking, feeling for it like a sore tooth, but there's sunshine and a deliciously scented breeze in this old house instead of the cobwebs and mold of a mere day ago...I could get used to this.

So thank you, Odd, Ang, and Hawkie...each of you has made a real difference in this womans' life.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Beautiful Decay

First post of the New Year, and it's ALL about decay...or as I prefer to see it, impermanence.

I am about to begin a new Moleskine rotation project (Take 8 artists, each with their own Moleskin Japanese Accordian-fold Journal and their select theme, send in an seven month rotation, each journal visiting each artist once, and end up with a glorious array of art in your moley at the end of the project), this one at illustrated ATCs.  I have chosen as my subject Beautiful Decay.  Here is the description I wrote in an effort to assist the project's artists:

All life is transitory.

I see rusting rivets, peeling paint on weathered buildings , an ancient man or woman, and I see beauty.  Mountains worn down by time into softened crags, or worn completely away into canyons, presenting fresh vistas, exposing cake-like layers.

Everything and everyone around us is in a state of change, a state of beautiful decay.  Perhaps it's a sign of my own aging, or maybe the product of seeing places such as Pompeii at a VERY early age, but I have long been fascinated by decay.

From close up or from a distance, in the ancient world or the modern, a place or a living entity, a vessel, building or something else; I'm interested in a taste of your vision and expression of beautiful decay. Note: the titles below each photo link to a page of that subject's photographs.

Rusty Vehicles and Vessels

And finally, the amazing Library of Dust project from David Maisel.  Library of Dust depicts individual copper canisters, each containing the cremated remains of patient from a state-run psychiatric hospital. The patients died at the hospital between 1883 (the year the facility opened, when it was called the Oregon State Insane Asylum) and the 1970’s; their bodies have remained unclaimed by their families.