Sit With It.

Ink on paper.

Repulsion, the natural effect of some thing that makes you uncomfortable. Grubby net curtains, tea stained mugs, teenagers, mould, dirty fingernail, your ex, your friends ex, your ex friend or your SELF.  If it makes you uncomfortable why would you want to sit with it?

Learning to lean into discomfort and challenge is an exciting process. I’ve got to the point where I choose to invite the necessary discomfort in order to gain the knowledge form being torn to shreds. Each part that is torn clings to it’s self and mends, like a scabby elbow. Tough and unique. Ugly to some perhaps but better off for it.

Drawing and talking has gotten things out of me that I had forgotten, on purpose. Vest and pants are still prevalent, it’s personal and brutal, the ultimate in vulnerability and strength that I can gather. Drawing various versions of my younger self has taken a useful role in my practice. I drew one of myself facing myself, I didn’t want to sit with it, with her. She makes me uncomfortable, sad and guilty.

The thing is, I can sit with her now. Small, strong, fragile and unrelenting. Learning to lean into the things that make you turn your cheek in disgust is difficult. Once you’ve looked at that thing and measured it’s worth and power, it’s a little less repulsive. I leaned into strength, merciless power, gained from my own unavoidable vulnerability, I survived it and now I can learn to sit with it, not run away or trap it in a box every time I feel it.

There is a beautiful creature, a turtle, armoured by an ever growing, ever thickening shell but squishy on the inside just like me.The shell is necessary, growing up is hard. Often when I think of them recently, it’s like a blow I wasn’t expecting. It’s a feeling in my gut, some thing very, very close to guilt, but not, it’s an inch further down. Imagine someone  threading a sparkler just below your diagram. In time that might fade, if nothing changes, and that’s OK. We might talk through a lot of stuff and still never be OK and that’s OK.

Every little bit leaned into or sat with has it’s rewards. If not, put it back in the box till the time comes to look at it again. I hate it. It’s so very painful, auto pilot numbness kicks in, I roll a cig and sit back down. One day I might love that mumbling little blonde thing in her vest and pants. I’m fine she says. She’s lying.

 

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