Friday, October 16, 2009

Healing Crisis and Nonie

Many of you know that my grandmother, Adele (we called her Nonie) died last Saturday morning. It was such a gift to be able to witness her passing and preparation for letting go. The healing and rebirth that occurred within me from having been a part of this death has lasted all week and last night, came to a pulsating head.

It began with a headache and tailbone pain (the usual for me when there's something I need to look at or let go of). This pain is the ego child's mind afraid, regretful, etc. I decided to go to a Thursday night Enlightenment meeting where Martha Burgess talks to a cozy group about all of this stuff - all this healing - all this surrendering - all this movement and letting go. Last night's topic was about losing parts of you along the way and reclaiming them. The parts of me I diminished as a child that I set aside in favor of getting more love, etc. Two really big parts I diminished of mine were 1. my femininity and 2. the artist.

Even going to undergrad art school didn't grant me access to this birthright of mine. I went through it all with trepidation and angst and self loathing. Sure, I learned some techniques but really, what I came away with was the idea that I wasn't good enough (because I was just a woman) and that the act of creation was painful and often lead to depression and suicide. Isn't that awful!? No wonder I stopped painting! It made me miserable.

NOW I am relearning the act of creation and pooling all of the skills I've acquired along the way into a more complete and productive Anne. I am finally calling myself an artist. It took that long. And I no longer curse the decision to go to art school any longer.

All I want to do in this moment is PAINT. Again. And paint big. And sell big. Gallery big. Opening big. And I've got more than enough content to ride this new wave of creativity and power. Sure the little books and boxes are fun - but one can never charge enough money for the amount of time you put into them. So they'll stay as products of the fun classes I teach. But starting today, I am carving out more of my time to create the art I've wanted to for so long. The bulk of my income will be from painting and the pieces I sell.

I feel so liberated.

But back to the healing crisis: Last night near the end of the Martha Burgess workshop, she walked up to me and said that my grandmother on my mother's side was with me. Martha's never met me before. But she saw Nonie. And BOY did I cry then. She took my face in her hands and kissed my cheek and said "this is from her."

So yeah. Nonie is one with all of life, having ended this life and entered into the next. I made this little xmas ornament for Nonie years ago and she hung it in her living room for years. Now it's mine again. And she's with me everywhere. So wonderful to rediscover her.

I woke up this morning having felt the cellular effect of all the healing Martha did for me last night. I'll take it easy today and continue to heal.

The most amazing epiphany I walked away with last night (and there were many!) was this: You cannot create and worry about survival simultaneously. Now THAT redefines work, doesn't it? So when I paint - it will be about expressiveness without judgement - the kind of judgement that says "I'll fail, I'm not good enough at this, they'll laugh at me."

I will be a channel for the God within me, who is the ONLY God - not some hefty white-bearded man in a robe that is separate from me.

First step this weekend is to take a hot bath right now - get those cells to feeling better, eat and sleep and just love myself.

I am amazed by this movement. I am in awe. I am beginning to really believe (someday I'll KNOW) that change is the most beautiful thing ever.

I am moving. My world has been rocked. And fuck, I AM the rock! and the water. and the stone...


Elaina Winter said...

Hey Anne!

It's been a while since I last saw you, but I like reading your blog and being able to grow from your words. And I don't really comment either, I know, but there is something in this post that really stuck out to me. It is EXACTLY how I felt when I was going to PC and I thought I was the only one that felt this way. And it crippled me throughout my time there. It is kind of like Post Secret, there is someone, somewhere going through the same thing as I.

But, this segment of your post, "You cannot create and worry about survival simultaneously. will be about expressiveness without judgement - the kind of judgement that says "I'LL FAIL, I'M NOT GOOD ENOUGH AT THIS, THEY'LL LAUGH AT ME.", really identified with me. I am starting to get to the place where I no longer worry about what others think about my creativity, and I am glad you are too!

Good luck with your painting! I hope you enjoy and relish the time when you create.

All the best,

Anne Elser said...


Wonderful to hear from you and to get a high five about this subject. I just got to tired of fighting voices in my head when I was doing something I supposedly loved. Most of those voices are gone now and I'm getting rid of the others as we speak.

Hope you're life's moving forward and that you are growing at the pace that suits you best. I am, too.



Lisa Holtzman said...

Anne, my condolences on the loss of your grandmother. Your feelings, losing parts of yourself, diminishing, squelching them to gain love, acceptance... fear, not good enough, it resonates so deeply with me. I'm so happy to know of your movement forward. You are an inspiration. You're a wonderful ARTIST and brave woman!

Anne Elser said...

Big thank you hug to you Lisa. We've never met but I know we'd have a blast if we did. :)