Two days off … I slept. And when I wasn’t sleeping, or listening to TV talk about Covid-19 news, I made art. Words, Paint. Music. Something to fill my spirit with light. Not artificial light of my apartment or workplace, but nature’s light, creativity’s light. I need to move and too often in this time, movement is given only to coping. I am so glad I have art and creativity to remind me. Breathe.
I belong to a number of groups including art, writing and music. These are my favourite ones because they let out my creativity … on the days I allow it space … I can feel life inside me. Worlds bigger than the routine I follow. Keeping these creative things in my life gives and costs me. How is hard to describe…
I had an email recently from a friend leading one of the arts groups. She spoke about reactions during this time of self-isolation; fight or flight being common, but freeze was new to her. It made me think.
Freeze is well known to me and has been for years. Still, I don’t understand. I recognize it lives in the PTSD. I see the ways it shows up and know the pattern, but knowing that has little practical value. I have words I want to share – publish – submit. I make paintings and am learning to accept them as they are – free flowing – awkward, messy, at times (as a friend said today) impish. They want out to play. They want a home. I want to submit them to magazines, sell them to people, see others enjoy the smiles they can bring. Freeze. Creativity, like my attempts at ‘career’ rather than ‘job’ gets hits hard by ‘freeze’. It is a part of my isolation, not just during this time of Covid self-isolation, but all the times PTSD slams doors I venture to open.
Acknowledging the word, my stomach gets queasy and I sense a need to burst into tears. Why remains mystery, even to myself. I try to explain, but it has no meaning, just swirls like colours in the water jar before they turn to grey. At least in saying that, I believe my art friend will see something of my experience.
Thank you to friends who check in, who laugh and share moments online, who post pictures and poems, who refuse to give in to the places we fear. I appreciate you all. I need what I said at the start … I am so glad I have art and creativity (and all of you) to remind me. Live. Laugh. Breathe.
And one day, the colours will dance rather than gray. They will not freeze. They will release into the world taking hope, light, joy.