3.02.2012

Where I've been lately...

Clouds aren't forever: SPRING is coming!

Clouds aren't forever: SPRING is coming!
a new series of watercolor and mixed-media collage...in progress!

Here's the short medium-length version of where I've been lately:

1. Enjoying my precious little daughters more than ever.  Three-year-old Eowyn is talking up a storm and sweeter and smarter than I could have dreamed.  Two-year-old Penelope is finding her words too and startles me every day with how sharp she is.  Now she can say "I love you" as clear as day, and she says it often.

2. Other than being an enamored Mama....I've been sick and sad, homesick and tired.  Directionless.  Completely at the end of my rope.  Not writing or painting.  Wishing desperately that I felt inspired to write or to paint, and therefore feeling MORE depressed because I didn't want to write or paint.

3. Going gluten free!  (It's been one full month now.)  Starting to feel a *little* better.  Lots of doctor appointments to figure out what's really causing the fatigue and pain.  Feeling encouraged that the gluten-free diet is helping a bit and hoping that it will only get better from here after determining what additional nutritional support I need!

4. Finally sitting down to face my spiritual upheaval, creative fears and frustration with a simple HB pencil and tears streaming down my face.  When the angry storm clouds began to appear on the grungy piece of paper gouged with a blade and stained with watercolor and coffee . . . BOOM.  Inspiration hit like lightning (pun intended, heehee).  The make-my-heart-beat-faster kind of inspiration.  The desperate, frantic, pounce-on-my-amazing-husband-as-soon-as-he-turns-the-key-in-the-lock-and-beg-him-to-go-it-solo-with-the-kids-tonight-so-that-I-can-finally-do-some-blogging-and-artwork kind of inspiration!

5. An epiphany!  And my JOY is returning. . . I gave my dreams to the Father, and it seems that maybe He's giving them back to me in small doses so that I can actually handle them.  He helped me to realize that I need to paint and I need to blog, just as much as I need to rest.  I need the encouragement of kindred creative spirits who are just a click away.  Really, He is ALL I need, but creativity is a special gift He's given me to help me connect with Him and with others.  I was about to give up my paints for Lent like I did last year, but when I prayed the answer was to give up TV (which I've been watching waaay too much of, in my depressed and aching state. . . using the excuse, "I'm not just watching TV, I'm practicing my German!" which is actually true btw :)) instead.  Because this year the Lord wants me to make more time to create and to make connections through this little blog.  Because somehow, (it's because it's HIS gift) I can trust Him more and honor Him better with my thoughts and attitudes when my fingers are busy creating, covered in color and flying over the keyboard.

How have you been?  :)  I've missed this space and visiting your spaces.  I'm going to try and catch up a little at a time.


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And now for a little bit more, just in case you've missed my reflective, rambling posts and want the longer version of the story ;)):

It started out that I simply didn't feel well.  That voice in my spirit was telling me to drop everything and rest.  And to trust.  Because who wants to drop everything they've been working on so intensely, and do nothing, let it all begin to gather dust?  Nobody!  But I really couldn't argue: my eye was twitching like crazy every time I looked at the computer screen, I started to get migraines every other day, and my wrists hurt too much to type or even to draw.  There was no question that something needed to change.

I spent the last month feeling quite ill and extremely sad and (of course) homesick.  February is usually my favorite month!  And although I could whine about how disappointing and depressing my "favorite" month was this year...I'm not going to (at least, not any more than I already have ;)).

Because I know there's a reason for everything.

I've been doubting this truth lately.  Or, maybe it's more accurate to say that I've been too tired to care that there's a reason for everything and I've been throwing myself a pity party because all I really want to do is run away.  I've even said out loud, "I know that I am in the exact place where God wants me, but what if I don't care anymore?!"

And you know what? He would still love me if I did run away. He would still take care of me. He would use any and every situation (even my bad choices) to teach me more about Him and to accomplish His purposes in my life.  But He challenges me to go deeper: to persevere in trusting Him through the hard stuff, to grow in strength of character and to know Him more.  To understand that His purposes are unfathomable and the depth of His peace is indescribable--even when on the surface I seem to be falling apart.  To be a (humbled) example of His strength and power because "I am hard pressed on every side by troubles, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair" (2 Corinthians 4:8).  Jesus doesn't promise only to give me strength.  He promises to BE my strength: ". . . but he answered, 'My grace is enough for you; my great strength is revealed in weakness.' Gladly, then, will I boast of my weakness that the strength of Christ may be mine" (2 Corinthians 12:9).  Becoming desperate enough to really live in that promise is a much more worthy pursuit than my momentary happiness.  


So, I will press on.  For really, there is no where to go except forward, right?  And because God is GOOD; He is good ALL THE TIME.  

36 comments:

  1. Welcome back Sadie. You're coming through quite a rough patch, seems to be definite light at the end of the tunnel. Your creativity is a wonderful God-given gift. God IS good, ALL the time.

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    1. Light at the end of the tunnel! I hope, I hope, I hope so! Thank you for the encouragement!

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  2. Hi my love. I am so proud of you how strong you are and how you are able to manage this difficult times. I love you and I couldnt wish for a better wife. I am so happy to see you picking up your paints again and create something fantastic!!!

    I love you and keep it coming! ;)

    ur hubby

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    1. Thank you, Mr. Best-Thing-That-Ever-Happened-to-Me. :)

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  3. okay, so your dear sweet husbands comment choked me up. He seems like mine. Always cheering me on in the background, and sometimes right in my face! I know that the weather really throws me for a loop, cold, wet, rainy will do it for sure! Winter/spring mixing together nasty weather through Jan Feb March. Have you kept a food journal? I have tried ADDing something into my life instead of giving up for Lent this year. Its really ministering to me, getting outside at least 20min/day no matter what. I think you are on the same track- God is wanting you to create every day?!(I am LIMITING the length of my blogposts/reading tho) So tell me what Daniel Smith colors you cannot live without.... Im dying to know. Maybe you could do a blog post on your favorite supplies? Im so so relieved to see/ read your post today. Prayiing.

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    1. Great idea about the "favorite supplies" post. I think I will begin working on that, maybe for next week! But for now I'd be happy to tell you my favorite Daniel Smith colors--although I'm no expert. I've only been painting with them for a year and there are still so many other colors I want to try--especially all the Quinacridone colors! The Daniel Smith catalog/website is so funny, isn't it? I really love the way they make all the paint options sound so romantic...but it makes it SO HARD to make a decision!!!

      I have Quinacridone Violet, Gold, Burnt Orange, Rose and Magenta. I use all of these A LOT--they just seem to glow! Two of my go-to colors are Raw and Burnt Sienna, but I've discovered that what Daniel Smith says is true--the Quinacridone colors pretty much replace these. I still use them if I want more of a dull tone, though. My other favorite is Bloodstone Genuine, which I use in place of black. It's a sedentary watercolor and kind of an aubergine color and does amazing things as it dries and the heavier particles separate. I would also recommend Rose of Ultramarine if you like to paint with purple, and Rhodonite Genuine for a soft, sedentary mauve-pink. My favorite blues are Cerulean Blue (Chromium) and Phthalo Blue (Red Shade). And Aureolin (Cobalt Yellow) is my new favorite yellow!

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  4. life does have it's challenges but yes, God is always faithful and he is always good. i'm glad you are better and hope for all the best for you in the coming days. there is a quote that i read recently which i thought would encourage you to do some art "The function of all art lies in fact in breaking through the narrow and tortuous enclosure of the finite, in which man is immerged while living here below, and in providing a window to the infinite for his hungry soul." - Pope Pius XII
    thank you for sharing,
    hugs, peggy aplSEEDS

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    1. Thank you Peggy! That quote IS encouraging--I'm going to write it down and process it some more. So wonderful. Thank YOU for sharing! :)

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  5. I am so happy to see you again Sadee! I have missed the peeks into your creative life. I hope you continue on the path of creating and feeling better. "Because it's HIS gift"... that is the beautiful truth!! :)

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    1. Thank you, Jennifer! Happy to see you too :).

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  6. oh, I love all those tiny scratches and the black edging on the clouds. I cannot wait to see this series!!!

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    1. Thank you, Daniele! The scratches are my favorite part too ;).

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  7. I was really blessed by your post. Thanks for sharing.

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  8. Welcome back, Sadie.
    This is a brave, beautiful and brilliant post!
    ♥♥♥
    Happy PPF!!
    Mary
    Mixed-Media Map Art

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    1. "Brilliant" is a word I will never tire of hearing. :) Thank you for your encouraging words!

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  9. Nice to see you again Sadee!
    yes
    keep pressing on sister
    there is indeed a reason for everything
    and we don't always need to know that reason if we live in the Trust of something more...
    blessings
    love and light

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    1. Thank you for the encouragement, Cat! You're right--Trusting means not always knowing the answers and being ok with that. That's when I get tripped up--when I start to feel like I NEED to know the reasons, and if I don't know them then I must have made a mistake somewhere along the way.

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  10. Oh. Oh yes, yes exactly. I've been feeling so much of what you're describing and I'm so glad I landed here. Just a quick glance through your blog is enough to tell me you're talented. I'm glad you didn't give up painting this year.

    ** And I have a Penelope, too! A fact that just can't go without saying. :) **

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    1. So glad you stopped by, Emily! Thank you for your sweet words. Happy weekend to you and your Penelope! :)

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  11. I hope you're feeling better now.
    Next week I'll have to go for some exams for thyroid and celiac disease. I had surgery 2 years ago for Endometriosis, but I still feel pains and I'm always tired, so my doctor told me about celiac disease. We'll see.
    Have a great time painting. I love your work!

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    1. So sorry to hear you're not feeling well! I'll be thinking of you and praying for you and your tests. I hope that painting and creativity serve as an encouragement for you too!

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  12. Sadee - i so understand how you feel. Trust me, most artists have been there. Do one thing for me, ok? DON'T give up your paints and writing for Lent. Find something else less damaging to your soul. :-) And when you feel that dreadful lack of inspiration, just let it be. You'll paint again. You'll write again. Maybe this 'down' time is exactly what you need to prepare for your masterpiece. :-) I'm a new follower! xoxo
    ps: your clouds are unbelievable!! You have a wonderful style...

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement and for following my blog, Pauline! Don't worry; not giving up my paints for Lent this year. :) Last year I gave up my brand new watercolors, but I still sketched and created with my india ink and colored pencils. It was actually an amazing experience--in limiting my supplies for a few weeks, I was able to experiment and find some new techniques that have become integral to my style!

      I'm hoping for that "masterpiece" too...thank you for your sweet words!

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  13. Love your painting! I find painting to be so therapeutic, it always chirks me up. xox

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    1. Thank you, Anne! And you're right--I spent most of my Saturday painting and I feel 110% better already ;).

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  14. Good to see you back Sadee! I think painting is wonderful for what ails you - it keeps your mind off your woes. Way better imho to give up TV than painting! You could always have the radio on in German in the background to practice ;)
    And blogging your artwork connects you to a greater community and the interaction helps to keep one inspired, I find.

    I love your clouds - great shading! Looking forward to seeing more.

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    1. You are SO right, Eva. I am feeling so much better today after immersing myself in my work this weekend! And what a great idea to listen to German radio. I hadn't even thought about looking for a good German talk-radio station! Thanks!

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  15. Incredible!!!
    Thank you for linking up, I've been blessed by you Sadee.

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  16. Wow, this is so beautiful. I have truly missed you. You can put words to thought so perfectly. I am touched by your honesty and vulnerability. Thank you for being real and letting us know how we can encourage you. I am sending you a virtual hug and I'm thankful you didn't give up your blog for lent.
    Catherine Denton

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  17. I was so glad to read this post!!!
    Continue!

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  18. Your painting looks intriguing and promising! Be well! <3

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  19. Sadee ,

    This is a most beautiful post. I sometimes feel that I need to keep my blues a secret but sometimes revealing your fears we begin to realize we all share some and I have just noticed that in an earlier blog.
    PPF is one place that is comprised of a great bunch of artists with heart....there is always someone near to talk to...and we all value a little help when we are in need of it, so it's nice to know it's there ; )

    What a sweetie pie hubby, he certainly is in tune with your heart.
    Keep painting and writing, it's a beautiful gift God has given you and you must share it.

    Sending you hugs and blessings.
    Annabelle ; )

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  20. The collages are terrific, looking forward to seeing what you create with them. Blessings, Janet PPF

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  21. I really admire your strength and chracter.Your art work and your expressiveness never ceases to leave me in wonder.I am glad that you have realized your gifts and are willing to contniue painting and creating to connect and to feel good !

    Duaa

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Thank you for being kind with your words and generous with your time!