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12 posts from March 2010


Art Saves Me, Daily • by Robyn Thayer


You see, the Source of the Universe had me pegged. Let me tell you a story About Dear Girl:

A little girl, Dear Girl, entered the world, smiling, all innocence and courage. Dear Girl was about to break through generations of repression. Only she didn't know that ... then.

Meeting Grace
Just down the dirt road, round the corner, beyond the chokecherry bushes, Trouble found Dear Girl, as it does for those daring to live out unfinished ancestral business. It snatched up Dear Girl's voice, teaching her about right and wrong, guilt and shame. Her soul went into hiding. Fear swirled just beneath her blue eyes and dimples, eagerness and caring. Gramma introduced Dear Girl to the fine art of crafting, effortlessly coaxing out the Dear Girl's soul, with offerings of pipe cleaners, yarn, tacky glue and wiggly eyes. Hours and hours at the kitchen table they sat in sticky bright peace and colorful enchantment. It was in these moments that Dear Girl met Grace. Linking art endeavor to endeavor, her conversation with Grace guided her through the years.

Dear Girl's supplies grew and so did her need for them as she combated early adulthood. Oh how she longed for confidence, for certainty. She came from the closed mouth clan. No one dared let the secrets out. No way, no how ― or so she reckoned. That is the way it was back then; Dear Girl had to do all the figuring, or so it seemed.

Peeling Away the Layers
Yes, the Source of the Universe had her pegged and kept offering itself to her with beautiful blessings, appearing in ordinary ways: a little old woman inviting Dear Girl to yoga, a med school professor suggesting poetry, and the wildness of Lake Superior, crashing on the shores of her rugged heart. Enough years of yoga began peeling away her layers of armor. Recognizing her sterling nature was untouched by Trouble, she began to dig, driven by longing and thirsty for meaning. Sifting through her life, gathering and releasing, daring and asking, and there it was: Dear Girl's Voice!

Authenticity
Dear Girl has been nurturing and tending to her Soul garden for some time now and it is bearing fruit. She is making generous offerings of old thoughts, discarded memories, hidden motives, dreaded truths, joys of discovery and innocence. Offering it all up to the Sacred fire, stoking her inner flame ― which happens to be burning brighter than ever ― shining into rare and unexplored territories within and around her. Dear Girl is ready this time: equipped with a paintbrush and Trust and her Voice and a village of loved ones. It is her greatest hope that through sharing her authentic voice, in color and word, others find and tend to their own deepest calling.

And that is only the beginning!

Robyn Thayer lives in Evergreen, Colorado. Her creations come forth in a little house on the mountain, amongst the tall pine with the unstoppable support and sweet love of her husband and basset hounds. Born and raised in northern Minnesota, she is totally set aglow by the wild outdoors. Rarely is Robyn seen without her basket of books and colors. Robyn is a flourishing artist purely by her addiction to rich, vibrant, creamy colors and dancing curves. She fills her days with meditation, yoga, dog walks, dark chocolate, illustrious poetry, endless creativity and wild imaginings. She hopes you enjoy her art and dares you to live your deepest, most delectable life evermore. Namasté. The Light in me honors the Light in you. To learn more about Robyn, visit her at studiolila.com.


Reborn by Art • by Ellen Wilson


When I was 26 years old, I was kicked off an island in the Aleutian Chain, called Adak. It is one of many islands, about 1500 miles off the coastline of Alaska. My husband is in the Navy; we were excited when he received his orders, back in the spring of 1986. We always wanted to see this part of our country.

Making the Best of It
I was shocked when I arrived; it looked like something out of a Mad Max movie. Vehicles were in bits and pieces, rundown buildings, and only five miles of tarred road. Every day it rained, but you always saw a rainbow. There was a National Forest, 24 tiny pines, 2½ feet tall, a pet cemetery (Stephen King came to mind), a McDonalds and a movie theater. You could see beautiful views of Mt. Moffet, out my kitchen window, but we also lived near a volcano; it was 26 miles out to sea.

We experienced 16 earth tremors a day and we warned to evacuate to Bering Hill, should a tsunami be sited. We were close to Russia, and we were not to discuss what we saw in regards to aircraft, ships, and subs with anyone back home. For fun we went sledding, whale watching, and had parties in WWII Quonset huts. It was an unusual place, but you learned as a Navy spouse, to make the best of it.

Something’s Wrong
Life was fine till I became pregnant; most women gain weight; I didn’t. I became sick, lost weight and wondered what was wrong with me. I kept going to my doctor and the ER when necessary. I was worried about the baby getting enough nutrition. I was five months pregnant and had lost 25 pounds. I couldn’t keep any food down, was seeing double and my hearing was off; I was down to 106 lbs. I ended up in the ER. It took 3 hours to diagnose me. Normal blood sugar is between 70-120; mine was 1380. I was in DKA ― Diabetic Ketoacidosis, this meant Type 1 diabetes. When your blood sugar is over 1000 you are considered in a coma, but I was awake. I could answer questions, knew my name, what year it was, who was president, and where I was. They put me on an insulin drip. When my blood sugar normalized; my baby died and I gave birth to a chronic disease.

Psychic Visions
I was bitter, but not about the disease. I was angry and sad, I truly wanted my baby. This baby had kept me alive, made me fight with all I had. I was medivaced and spent three weeks in Elmendorf AFB Hospital in Anchorage. The Navy would not allow me to come back. It would be high risk to have a new diabetic on the island.

My husband’s orders were for another year; he had to return to Adak. The Navy sent me home to Maine. I was angry with the world; Every time I saw a baby I cried. My high school friend came by, she took me swimming, to the movies, and hiking. My mom mentioned one afternoon that she and some friends were going to Bayside and to see a psychic and I went along. The psychic was in a beautiful gray cottage on the bay with a long porch with a line of rocking chairs. Inside there were many small rooms and one huge conference room. It had dark paneling, lots of dim lanterns, lit candles, and paintings of spirit guides on the wall. Our guide entered, a petite woman with a cherub face. We were told to bow our heads and we were led in a guided prayer. She began with my mom’s friend, going on about trains and all the details fit. My mom didn’t have much luck this time. Some people were crying and satisfied with their session. My turn finally came, “You are cold, very cold,” she aid. Well, I thought, I had just been in Alaska. “I see the number 2 around you,” she said, but it didn’t strike a chord. “I see a man on a horse wearing a laurel wreath.” It didn’t ring any bells. “I see a girl, blonde hair with wings, dipping her feet in the water.” Then she said, “I see color, lots of beautiful color … do you paint?” I told her that I used to. The guide went on about color, so much color, “You must be an artist.” She told me I needed to do something with color. I wrote all this down and tucked it away, thinking someone had told her about me. We left laughing about all the quirky details.

The Darkness Begins to Fade
The next day, I was going through old boxes in my bedroom when I found my old charcoal sketches. My mom reminded me of the painting lessons I had taken. Later in the week I started to draw and paint and I felt a bit of the darkness fade. I noticed the more I engaged myself I became less bitter. It was a release, a time when joy could visit. As odd as it seemed I felt I had been guided in this direction, perhaps it was time for me to reopen the door to my creative side. I started baking when I was 7, at 10 received a camera and filled many albums, at 11 I started sewing, at 12 I started playing the guitar and at 13 started painting lessons. I had lost this part of me; this was the key to being me and healing.

Reborn by Art
I think back now on what the psychic told me, and it all makes sense. I have lived in Alaska twice, we moved back in 1989 to Anchorage. I have two children, two autoimmune diseases (thyroid disease appeared after my last child was born, and Type 1 diabetes) and I have had a second chance at life.

The man with the laurel wreath represents my son. I was victorious giving birth the second time. I had a boy and named him Larry ― his name derives from the laurel wreath. My daughter Angela is blonde, has angel in her name, and was born under a water sign. I found this out later in life, when a friend did my Tarot cards. It is fitting that Alaska’s mystique would be a metaphor for me. Alaska taught me to endure long days of darkness, enjoy the breathtaking colors of the Northern Lights and how to cope as the sun slowly began to peek over the horizon, this is when I healed. Art Saves …

Ellen Wilson is an artist who lives in South Mill, North Carolina. To learn more about Ellen art, please visit her at ellasedge.blogspot.com.

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