2005 recap

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It is part of my normal rhythm to look back at the year and access and then look forward to set new goals. It is something that I have done since I was twelve. Whether or not it makes a difference in what is accomplished in a given year, I am not sure, but I know the assessment at least makes me conscience of it. I have traditionally done an assessment on my birthday(end of Nov) and a goal setting in Jan. Somehow this year I am just getting to it now. I love how superhero journal looks at this process. Last year she shared the concept of the Mondo Beyondo list. This is not so much a goal setting list, but a really over the top, dream big list. Think "beyond"o your wildest dreams.

I love it.

So to help me look back at 2005 and forward to 2006 I will also employ the spirit of the Mondo Beyondo.

First the recap of 2005.

Things that were accomplished/experienced in 2005 that I am proud and excited about:

1. Unleashed the muse and started "thin places" series of paintings. Why I am so proud is they had no outside motivational factor like approval of others, professional gain or potential profit. They were simply pure expression from my soul.

2. Called myself an artist. After years of being one and making a living as one, I finally felt totally comfortable with the term. Weird.

3. Went to Europe. It is one thing to dream it, another to plan and execute. Months of meticulous planning paid off in the four week trip of a lifetime. And what is even better is what was gained that I could have never planned for, the expanding of myself in the whole process. While I may have "trophy" pictures to look at, they do not compare to the expanding of myself as a person in the experience.

4. Being really present for my family. This is something that I have been pretty consistent about over the years but it still deserves recognition because it is the easiest thing to let slide(I think). It involves creating the haven where my husband and son can flourish. Being fully engaged in those moments where transformation happens takes energy, but the fruit is so sweet when I view my son and the man he is becoming. A simple moment of encouragement like butterfly wings can change the course of a life.

5. Not giving into my darker side. This is the ongoing challenge that I think a lot of artists face. The good side is the place where my art, expression, power and accomplishment comes from. The darker side is the polar opposite that sometimes covers me like a black cloth threatening to suffocate. These are the days that I need to be most diligent in moving moment to moment. I think my father suffered from this and it ultimately led to self destruction. Recognizing this imbalance helps me to not give into it which would leave me frozen and useless.

6. Did yoga. Although I have not been consistent on a daily basis, I have been consistent enough to feel that I can claim it as a change in my lifestyle. I think because I did not make this an unrealistic goal, I was actually able to make incremental and gradual headway. Although I can still barely handle the triangle pose, I feel like I have learned something about the discipline of slowing down which is harder than you think in our culture!

7. I am excited about the nature of the Divine. I have to say that this has been a spark that was not something that I could engineer, but is the byproduct of a totally honest approach to my spiritual journey. The irony is that it HAD TO happen outside of the confines of the institutional church where my spiritual roots began. The spark went out years ago while inside the institution and I had simply accepted this as normal. Not so. This has been a major process that began with pain and doubt, but seemingly irrational honesty questioning myself, and the nature of god has lead me into a new place of hope.

Consider this painting I did at the end of 2004.(a mammoth canvas after an illustration of the same thing I did in 2001)


Compared to this...


Interesting to think about how the mind works. I believe there is deep significance in the contrast of these and how it reflects my soul.

Both paintings depict me. In the first I am boxed in (squished) naked and vulnerable. Peering through a hole that leads nowhere. The second painting I am dressed in red which is significant because I own no red clothing but have heard that it is a "power color" (whatever that means). I am dancing for joy outside of the confines of the portals which have now become "thin places". My hair is red which reflects some of the transformation that is happening. In reality I had died my hair an auburn color. A radical outward example of what I think was going on inside. Whether or not it was a good idea for my appearance seems less of an issue in hindsight. I am blonde again now, but the act of changing my hair color was obviously part of my process. In the first painting I am stuck, immobile and stagnant (but desperately peering out). In the second I am dancing wildly for joy, unconfined and free.


and finally last on the list but in no particular order, and already mentioned in the previous number...

8. Died my hair red(auburn). Something I just wanted to do. Sort of shock therapy meets vogue. If you have never arbitrarily changed you hair color, I highly recommend it as a tool for self awareness. Ignore what your friends might say (mine were very kind and diplomatic) it isn't about them anyway. I did return after the exercise to the relief of my husband that although was quite supportive really does prefer blondes.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Blair published on January 6, 2006 11:51 AM.

recovering and then off was the previous entry in this blog.

MONDO BEYONDO is the next entry in this blog.

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