In my post last week, I showed you how I scribbled about losing trust in my life on eight canvases, and created a art series based on the question: Why do we trust? Why should we trust?
You can see the steps in creating this series here.
Well, I finished my series and now I get to show you!
But first, I painted this all in two days on an Art Kibbutz on Governor’s Island, New York.
So, why art kibbutz? Well, why don’t I tell you a bit about what I did there…
Okay, so I had a great time at Art Kibbutz…and my “Trust” cycle is finally finished!
Here we go. My life…in eight canvases.
1: I put my trust in trees, Nature, family. The world Is an open door. Life Inspires me, walking among The trees. I feel connected To life, love, art, soul, self, GOD. I open myself too much, And put my faith in a Mentor. Suddenly, everything I believe in the world, I attribute to this personified source of inspiration. My trust in the world is SHATTERED.
2: I finally build up the trust in my Own voice to speak the words That I had been abused. I put Trust in those words to my mother, Surrender, and to the power of Healing. I put my trust in uncertainty, Vulnerability and letting go. We are going to heal together. I wake up months later in a surgery ICU. I’m told that my stomach exploded, I Can’t eat or drink, and no one can Guarantee that I ever will again. I Lose all trust in God, my self, life Certainty, and anything solid to Stand on. I lose trust in reality, joy, Justice and safety. Hope shatters. Life shatters.
3: In the hospital, I finally have the Stillness and simplicity around me to Search once more for peace, clarity, self, Physical stability, stamina, strength, and Embrace my new normal as a child waking Up to a new world. I trust that a crises Has shaken me and now is shaping me. I Trust that I will find meaning if I maintain The strength to move on into a new, uncertain life. I trust that the hospital will teach me lessons I can incorporate once I get back to my real life. Hope is shattered when there is no magic Transition from hospital to home. I lose Trust in “home” and “normal.” Discharge From the hospital hasn’t changed anything. I’m Still dependent on IV Poles, still week, still Displaced fro normal life. Home, I’m still A stranger, a nomad. I lose my trust in home.
4: I become numb to cope. Numbing is My best friend. I don’t have to feel the Days seamlessly pass. I don’t have to Risk. Or dream. Or worry about who I am. Numbness is safe. Numbness coats me In a numb, sterile, safe, stifled, comforting haze. I lock Myself in my room, all day, every day. I keep My thoughts and body in constant motion, to not Leave room for presence. I gain trust in rigidity. I trust that with numbness, I will always be safe. I find out that my grandmother has died from My mother, who tells me from outside of my Door. I sense a sharp pang of sadness, and Fight like hell to keep it out. Feeling means death And this trail of tears threatens to pierce through My numbness and send me spiraling in the uncertain Depths of dark, repressed emotions within me. My Tears tear me in two. Nothing is safe.
5: Three years out of the hospital, I Finally have a nineteen-hour surgery, and Another surgery (months apart) to have a Digestive system. My insides are fixed, my Wound is healed, and I gain trust in a new, Normal life. I can eat. I trust that I’ve Put medical crises behind me and I can start A new chapter reclaiming my life. Over the next several years, my wounds burst Open multiple times, and all certainty and Medical stability, independence will be snatched In an instant. I lost trust I being Granted permission to live again. I lose trust In hope, in doctors, in optimism, in my body, In how far I’ve climbed. I lose trust In answers. I lose hope in ever doing More than getting through. I lose Trust in the fantasy that someday, this Will purely just be a story to tell.
6: Six of the past ten years unable to eat or drink, I finally take my first bite of food. I put hope in my new life nourished as a normal, eating, drinking, fully connected and formed person. I trust that this has been the missing piece needed to put me back into life again, to make me feel normal safe and home. I start to eat and am overwhelmed with the sudden Flood of emotions that food has unlocked. Food Is filling my body with life and, with vitality Comes joy, pain, memories, grief, anger and The feelings I haven’t had a chance to process Once I was abused. I lose trust in this final Solution, in the identity that food as supposed to Help me reclaim. I can no longer hope that Food will fix everything. I lose trust in feelings, In my self, in life, in ever feeling safety again.
7: My 27th surgery has taken me out of The world again, and my medical complications Are worse than they’ve been in years. My Loneliness and overwhelming despair pulls me to Open up to the world in a bigger and more Connected way than ever before. I turn to Others. I give of myself. I fall in love For the very first time. Within months, I go From surgery, to dating, to my first boyfriend, A relationship, being vulnerable with another Person, engaged, and married. I put my trust In love, in a completely new form. My trust in others and in emotional vulnerability Is shattered, when a man I’ve learned to Painstakingly trust, has abandoned a vow I had Trusted. This divorce is a loss of the first real Love in my life. I lose my trust in others, in Connection, of being open and in the world Gain. I lose trust in surrendering my soul to Another. I lose trust, once again, in my vulnerability.
8: I don’t know what to put my trust in anymore. I don’t know what to hope for anymore. I don’t know what is solid, firm, stable Except this marker in my fist, this canvas And this very Now. Even if I don’t like it. I trust it now because I don’t have anything else. I have now. I have who I am in Now. Even if there is more I wish to be. This, right now, solid, is what I stand on. I put my trust HERE and trust That moment and my self, so we can fly. What have I lost? What did I get? What do I have? What did I learn? Where do I go? This canvas is my prayer.
Well, there you go. That’s my Trust Cycle Series.
Art Kibbutz was an amazing experience. I got to paint what I’m feeling, where I’m at…it’s why art saved my life and continues to save me again and again, after each detour my life takes…
Art is what helps me to find the beauty in the detours. Art is what I can rely on when times are uncertain.
That’s why I create to live. I create to find trust.
So to answer my own question: Yes, it’s important to trust. And why do I trust? I trust to live.
I trust because art tells me to, even when my mind and spirit don’t want to.
Why do you trust?
Watch my TEDx Talk about finding beauty in the detours here.