About the artistic loneliness

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I woke up feeling somewhat rested, it’s been a while since I slept for 8 hours straight. My health is improving and I’m feeling positive about things. I’ve missed this feeling. I’m soon strong enough to paint again.

I’m lucky to have a couple of weeks left of summer to enjoy without any pain.

I’ve talked a lot to Johnny lately about how I feel lonely in my art. I don’t have a context here, I don’t have a place in the art world in Sweden and sometimes it gets lonely. I have a few other Swedish artists that I know and talk to, but we are outsiders in the art world here. Johnny wrote the sweetest thing about this matter:

“In terms of stimulation for your art and for your creativity – eventually you have to find that in yourself, in your life, in the things that surround you. If you depend on others to stimulate you in this way, it becomes a crutch, something you depend on to create, but you dont NEED someone else to create. You are a very creative person, very intelligent and you look beyond the surface in everything around you. You read between lines, connect dots -this is the stimulation that is in you and for you. When you look to others to provide that for you it’s a starting point, but you have it in you to find starting points. At one time you needed them to provide starting points as you were finding yourself creatively, but i think you have grown into yourself, you are in a place where you dont need someone elses starting points, you have a river…an ocean…a galaxy of staring points in everything around you. I think you have been around people who demand that you see things the way they do and you played with the boundaries of how they saw things in the world and created worlds around them that were you within these boundaries, but you dont need them anymore.
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If you looked at a tree I know you would find hundreds of ways to use the form the texture, what the figure looks like, how it represents how you feel or how you see something in the world. You dont need someone to tell you how to look at it or that you should look at it, but if you do, I am right here sweetheart. I am trying to help you not be dependent on others when I see you so clearly and I see how brilliant your mind is, how amazing your imagination is, how you have so much to say and that you can find a way to say it through anything around you. That’s the expressiveness and the creativity of being Mia.”
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It was so comforting and beautiful. I might be an outsider with my art, but I’m certainly not lonely with this kind of love and support in my life – in my heart.

There’s no place like home

I feel like fall is approaching. It’s windy and the air is slightly crisp. I love that. And it’s only a couple of weeks until my love will come here and we’ll get to share the wind and everything else, together. Against all odds, we have found something solid and beautiful together that doesn’t get affected by the distance or the frustration of being apart. For the first time in my life I have all the patience I need.

I’ve also allowed myself to have doubts. I am so used to being ‘slurped’ by other men in my past, I mean I was seduced by their attention so much so that I was swallowed up by it and couldn’t think straight. Like I was spellbound and drugged  by it. I didn’t get a chance to feel if it felt right or not, or to have any  doubts. I am very cautious about the slurping now. I know it’s a manipulation just to catch me, and once they have me, they are very different from what they first appeared to be. It’s creepy. The slurping effect is like buying a fancy car and then realizing you are sitting in a cardboard box that just looks like a real car.

I am all about authenticity and being vulnerable and real together. No wonder I’ve been miserable in my past relationships. Some people think that you should work hard to GET someone – to work really hard in the hunting process, but once they have you, they stop making an effort and they let go of their commitment and focus. I believe in the opposite thing: the hard work starts once you feel like you are committed, when you have built some trust together. That’s when you can create something truly beautiful and magical together. And I won’t ever let go of the commitment or the focus on the connection, because that’s when it all goes to hell.

All the doubts have led back to the same place, and it’s the home we are creating together. In each other and in the world. And there is no place like home.

About pity party, love and worlds gone topsy turvy

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From my notebook about the “friends” I invite to join my pity party

I’ve been struggling with anxiety for a few days. There are just so many things up in the air right now, so many important processes in motion. I feel like I don’t have the strength or energy to deal with all of it,  simultaneously – but I have no other choice. And then I feel overwhelmed, lose my drive and host my own pity party (see video in my previous post) and end up with anxiety. The trick is to not let it get to you – just let the change happen without making any resistance.  If you are ready to change or if you are forced to change to adjust to a new situation – then resistance won’t have any impact on the result anyway. But it makes you feel in control for a while.

The more I understand about myself, the more I am able to relate to other people and understand their behavior as well as my own. It isn’t always a good thing. Especially not when they don’t want to hear your brilliant insights or aren’t interested in changing in order to become better people. It is frustrating at times. A spiritual or mental awakening is the biggest thing that can happen to a person, but at the same time it can make you feel intellectually lonely and socially misplaced. I don’t have many friends because I find myself on a different frequency than most people, but the few friends I do have mean the world to me. We share a frequency and a deep understanding of the value of life. Many of my friends have survived traumas or some kind of betrayal.

And because life’s been difficult and painful for both Johnny and me, we share a deep connection based on gratitude and appreciation for what we are able to build together. That and mutual respect for each other’s weaknesses and strengths. I am not used to being in a relationship based on respect. It’s both such a great foundation for our relationship but also the most confusing thing. Where I am expecting an aggressive reaction – he’s kind and accepting, in times when I think he’s gonna judge me for something, he’s embracing it. And when I expect him to betray me, he’s just holding my hand through whatever I’m going through. It makes my whole world go topsy turvy. I am so used to the opposite reactions. To be judged, humiliated, ignored, punished or neglected. The love I feel from Johnny restores all the broken pieces of my poor little heart. I am so grateful.

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I just have to get through this time of anxiety and worries without losing any momentum. I’ve worked too hard for this. I can’t let anything come in between me and my will to live my life as I am destined to live it and not as people expect me to live it. This is the process of independence and it’s scary as hell. And I love it.

House roots

Something wonderful is happening. For the first time in my life, I’m growing roots and they are deeply connected to the ground. I’m not floating around in space like a balloon without a string anymore. I’ve found my place in the world just by being true to who I am and in the love I feel for Johnny. Geography doesn’t matter. Nor does circumstances. When you find your home, in yourself and in another person’s heart, external things are not that important. I am still broke but I feel very rich. To be poor is a state of mind (in this part of the world), feeling fortunate as well.

I’ve known Johnny for almost four years and our love story has been complicated and rich in details and colors. So much has been standing in our way – other lovers, bad timing, health issues, distance and money. But we are still here, we are still in this connection together. What started out as a few strings attached grew into a complex and beautiful root system. The progress of our love story is visible in my digital art. Look closer at the three pieces above. See how the floating house with just a few strings attached to a star slowly develops delicate roots which are a little more connected in each piece. Not yet touching but slowly making contact while creating sparks of light and warmth.

Some years earlier the houses in my art were adrift, hard to reach or full of smoke and flames – just like my relationships at the time were either explosive or disconnected.

But there’s more happening than the creation of my new roots. My house is growing taller, like a tree – and I’m stretching out, reaching out, unfolding, pushing myself outwards like I have long and curious branches wanting to touch the world outside myself. Wanting to be part of it and making it part of my very own existence.

Johnny is setting me free into the world. There’s no possessiveness, no chains. I’m still struggling with fears, trust issues and insecurities at times, because of my traumas, but every day I learn something new from him about  generosity and kindness. He’s  making grow and blossom by letting me be me – all the way. I’m very grateful. I hope I am doing the same for him.

There is so much out there for me to reach for.

I will try to explore this new sensation of being rooted but so free to reach for the sky, in a new digital piece. A tree house perhaps. Or why not a house tree, somewhere between the depth of reality and the dreams within.

From him to me right now

I’ts like you leave light prints all over the place where you’ve been – your light is connected to your beautiful curiosity and playfulness, it adds so much to this world and you are just made of it, like a light sculpture captured in your core – in your being.

– Johnny

The process of happiness

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It’s been difficult for me to write anything lately because I’m going through so many different and wonderful processes at the same time. Processes are abstract and hard to define since they are in constant motion, sort of in the same way the sun is dancing across the waves of the ocean. It’s easier to describe a process after going through them. The abstractions are less abstract then and replaced by substance and meaning – and a new sense of clarity. Every day I’m experiencing self-empowerment and letting go of negativity and fear in both little things and in bigger ones. I’m focused on pleasure, happiness and strength – and it takes a lot of trial and error to change my thinking style and the way I’m accepting it.

I try not to fall back in old behavioral patterns, but it’s hard sometimes. I’m still struggling with the thoughts that I don’t deserve to be happy and loved. The manipulation is rooted deeply into my system.

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Why wouldn’t I deserve to be happy and loved? Because it makes someone else feel bad about themselves? Because I am not good enough? Because I am in debt to the world? No theory makes sense, they’re all stupid. If I don’t deserve to be happy – who does? Someone who’s more ‘perfect’? Someone who doesn’t demand anything of other people? Someone who’s less fortune than myself? All this is also so silly.

I understand that I can’t just change my approach to happiness over night. It’s a process, like I described. I just have to accept that today I felt happy and loved and no one could ever take that away because I don’t allow people to punish me or shame me anymore. Happiness is a choice – an attitude of the mind. If I want to feel happy I will find a way to feel happy. And then I’ll actually be happy. That’s the best part of process of happiness.

A restless house

The monthly hormones are messing with my head again, I’m feeling slightly off – and it’s still too hot outside. My mind is like a restless house where the windows are closing right after they are opened. I can’t think straight. I know I am being whiny right now, but I have my reasons it’s just not the ones I just listed.

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I always thought that if there ever would be anything coming in between two lovers, it would be other people – lovers, flings, exes – or just a sense of growing apart. But now I know it also includes health issues – in my case; diabetes (and no, I’m not the one with the disease).  When someone gets sick it changes the dynamics in the relationships, suddenly there’s new obstacles, new routines, change of plans, a new focus, seriousness and worries. The disease is stealing things from both its victim and the relationship. At times I feel furious – and I have no one to blame or anywhere to put that rage – because I can’t really be angry with my boyfriend for getting sick and there’s no one who made him sick to begin with. The energy turns into a restlessness. And at times – despair.

I can’t really do anything to help from this side of the planet  – he is doing his best on the other side. The only thing I can do is to be there for him and to accept what is happening. The latter is way more difficult. But I have to accept it. I’m still too mad to do that. And it’s easy to let the ego ask the questions; “why now?” and “why is this happening to me when I just found the best love of my life?” – but it’s not even about me. I have no right asking such questions. Yet, it is affecting me and the fantasies I had about us. I guess all the fantasies are still there, I just have to adjust them to fit the new reality. But it still sucks.

This is definitely a test to see how steady and stable the foundation of our relationship is. I thought we had enough obstacles with the geographical distance, with practical things like moving to another continent to be be able to be together, money stuff – little things like that. Life is both an amazing place to explore – and also nothing but a pile of crap at times.

Harmony of the core

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I feel so much gratitude for the people close to me. I can’t believe how lucky I am to have so much love and appreciation around me. I’m building a new family of friends and I have Johnny across the ocean who’s looking after me more than any other boyfriend whom I’ve shared my everyday life with, ever did. I’m painting my life with careful brush strokes. Every decision I make has a meaning and is pushing me forward instead of me clinging to what I already know. I’ve wasted so many years, tears, heartbeats and headaches on the wrong things. Stuff without substance. Destructive things that drained me. And unattainable fantasies and ghost hunting. Now I want everything in my life to be real, positive and to unfold naturally. I’m done forcing life in the direction I want, life doesn’t work that way anyway. I am accepting the fact that even if I make decisions and even if I’m leading my life in a non-forced way, life is still full of surprises and occasionally creates little mazes for me to find my way out of. But with acceptance comes a sense of inner peace. And that’s all I’ve ever wanted for myself.

There’s a big difference between being comfortably numb and emotionally paralyzed that I use to feel – and to be at peace. The serenity of the heart and mind has nothing to do with passivity. On the contrary – a vivid inner life of wants and dreams but with the acceptance of circumstances and reality, creates the perfect balance of ambition and stillness – and ultimately finding the harmony of the core. It is very difficult to get here, but once you find this place everything in life unfolds with a sense of ease and simplicity.

To share but not to have

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Working at the gallery is opening up many new places in my mind, not only when it comes to my own art, but also ideas for projects and possibilities I’ve never considered before. I’m having so much fun. I think I’ll finish my painting in a few days. I can’t wait to show it to you. After that, I have more ideas for paintings and drawings. I see them all in my head already.

It’s been a rough week for me and Johnny, it’s hard to be so far apart. Having a long distance relationship is not easy. People think that long distance relationships aren’t really real because of the lack of physical interactions, but at times it’s even more real than a relationship with someone who’s there with you since the only thing you are able to share is verbal communication. Talking is always good. It is the foundation for any healthy relationship. But it’s still hard to maintain a long distance relationship – especially when the missing turns into frustration and the frustration turns into all kinds of bad energies. But love will survive any obstacle, if there’s a two way effort to make it work. I’m happy to have found a man who’s willing to fight for me, no matter what comes our way. I feel lucky. But at times I feel lonely here on this side of the world. It’s the backside of a long distance relationship. To share but not to have. It’s a lot of dimensions getting lost in the void between us, but they are still there. I just wish I could feel his hand on my face right now, telling me that everything will be alright. Because it always will be, in the end.