life, love,art. heart failure and assorted ramblings

life, love,art. heart failure and assorted ramblings

Don't Talk Like That...

I write to find out what my heart thinks....
I write to expose and work through the ugly parts of this disease, open heart surgery that was less than successful and more recently an S-ICD (internal cardiac defibrillator) implanted in my chest that will hopefully restore my heart beat in case of sudden cardiac death. I am here to celebrate my life, to uncover my fears, to hold on to love, to learn how to live a full life with heart failure, to honor my creativity, and to explore all of my emotions out loud ...before anyone can say
"Don't talk like that!"


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Music is loading really slow lately...sorry...

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Lessons...



When it continues to return and return, even though I think I have learned, obviously I have not. This lesson is obtuse and difficult.
Does it need this much of my attention?
Why do I care what others think when clearly they do not care how I think or feel.

And then I ask myself…Is this my lesson???

Modigliani Soundtrack
Ave Maria...The Competition
Guy Farley

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Get Your Hands Dirty





Left to right
Up and down
I push up love, love everyday
Jump in the mud,
Get your hands dirty 
Love it up on everyday

"Everyday"  Dave Matthews Band

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Writing Your Way to Happiness....from the NY Times

I Just Knew it!!!!!

"The scientific research on the benefits of so-called expressive writing is surprisingly vast. Studies have shown that writing about oneself and personal experiences can improve mood disorders, help reduce symptoms among cancer patients, improve a person’s health after a heart attack, reduce doctor visits and even boost memory.
Tara Parker-Pope

Whisper....Whisper....Whisper

There she goes again…..
There are days that fear takes over, and it has nothing to do with how good I feel, how much success I have had, or where I am.  Fear is a wicked little thing that sees a minute crack in my self-esteem and it rushes in consuming all of my confidence and will.  Then it grows and grows and grows until I am filled with self-doubt and am paralyzed. 
I cannot predict when that fear arrives, all I know is when it is here I have just got to focus on that little spark.

whisper….whisper…whisper
"There She Goes" ortoPilot

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Nude Nite...I could not explain it better!


Love how my creative friend Marla E explains what Nude Nite is.  All I can add is that I am honored beyond belief that my work will be included in this years exhibition.  Feb 12-13-14 tickets available at  www.nudenite.com

Last Year's Nude Nite Photos

Speaking volumes...

Abstract heart pendant


Playing again!  Trying new things and consciously watching emotions manifest into tangible real things.  
Speaking volumes and saying nothing.
but ICD's scare me.....


"Thinking Out Loud"  Ed Sheeran

Monday, January 26, 2015

Pushed me

"7 Flights Up"  CJ Evans
To those of you who have pushed me, thank you.
   Without you I wouldn’t have fallen.
To those of you who laughed at me, thank you.
   Without you I wouldn’t have cried.
To those of you who just couldn’t love me, thank you.
   Without you I wouldn’t have known real love.
To those of you who hurt my feelings, thank you.
   Without you I wouldn’t have felt them.
To those of you who left me lonely, thank you.
   Without you I wouldn’t have discovered myself.
But it is to those of you who thought I couldn’t do it;
   It is you I thank the most,
Because without you I wouldn’t have tried.
                                                            Robert Tew


"From Me to You"  Janis Ian

Sunday, January 25, 2015

trapped....

This really is the proverbial double edged sword!  I think to prevent my own embarrassment, pain and letting others assume what I am and am not capable of,  I just do not say anything.  I have been more open recently to tell others because if they are going to be around me for any length of time, they will figure it out, or think I am a total lazy slug.  My biggest fear is now and always has been, that once they know, they will see me as weaker, and unable to participate in life fully….that is the only thing I want to do right now…participate in life to the fullest extent my body will allow, not what I or others perceive my heart and body can or cannot do! Trapped!

"Secret"  Maroon 5

Saturday, January 24, 2015

She did it anyway!

Please note…I did not say because she was intelligent, organized, focused, talented, secure, or attractive. I am learning that I just need to be one thing. It is what we all need to do FIRST! None of these other things will come until I do brave. I have to be brave first.

"The Lime Tree"  Trevor Hall

Friday, January 23, 2015

Nanny's Tulip Tree


Remembering a gracious southern lady!  Blossoms from Nanny’s tulip tree remind me so much of her!  These incredible delicate blooms on really tough wood branches are the perfect description of Nanny.  A kind southern woman that could charm you out of anything, but do not mess with her!  She had the strength of 3 men!  She grew the most wonderful feminine gardens and gorgeous flower beds, the perfect picture of southern hospitality but ran her business and miles of orange groves with an iron fist.  She would run a crew of “pickers” harvesting fruit all morning and sit in her sewing room mending that afternoon.  There was nothing she could not do.  I am so happy that there are reminders of her all around me.


"From Me to You"  Janis Ian

I am in!

There is nothing more validating or exciting, than doing what you love and having it recognized!  I was accepted into this years Orlando Nude Nite exhibition Feb 12-13 & 14.  I am so honored, excited, blessed and looking forward to such a great time in the company of fantastic creatives!  Woo-Hoo!  http://www.nudenite.com/#!about-nude-nite/cjg9

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Crazy New Shit




OK….I know how this works…the proverbial “been here done that” certainly applies here!  It is truly time to try on the crazy new shit.  I also think it will be ok to keep some of the same old shit as long as it drives me crazy (good).  No more, “just because that is the way it has always been done”  No more.  I need to quit complicating the issues, the choice is this simple.


   "Breaking Silence"  Janis Ian

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The DIScomfort Zone


Maybe instead of working so desperately scratching to get to my comfort zone, I should embrace this as a very new and different opportunity to grow and push past comfortable.  Is comfort zone is another cleverly disguised behaved myself, gone to heaven word for dead? That is after all the ultimate comfort zone!  
Going to ride this out.... look for the growth in this emotional discomfort!
Discomfort is where love, life and radical ideas really grow, it really sucks but even I will have to admit they do grow wildly in this environment!  There is certainly plenty of historical evidence that discomfort breeds wonderful things!


"Ride This Out"  Imaginary Cities

Monday, January 19, 2015

A living, breathing, screaming invitation to believe better things.





I so wish I was better at this.  It feels natural to support other creative, makers and artists, but when it comes to those I love, I feel like I am just not good enough.  I really want to be that living breathing screaming invitation!

And the meds are doing it again...I need it to stop!

"Wonderwall"  Ryan Adams

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Only 2 choices...


There are always 2 choices.
Connect with the negative or NOT, there is no halfway point. When walking into a difficult situation where I know the personalities involved, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what the likely outcomes will be….notice I did not say the definite outcomes.  I will always hold out just a little hope for creativity and change.  But for the most part…when hearts are not open to authentic honest creative new solutions, then it is fairly obvious what the outcomes will be. I cannot take the chance of deliberately connecting to the negativity, scarcity and fear. No matter how much I want it to be different ….it most likely, never will.  All of my connections have to be authentic, positive and full.


"Some People's Lives"  Janis Ian
"The people that trigger my negative emotions are messengers.  They are messengers for the unhealed parts of my being."

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Arms Around My Life








"Arms Around My Life"  Janis Ian

I hate lists...but...

but I love this one!  I am always moved and inspired by Danielle LaPorte and again by her list of WANT MORE kindness and success.
1. Want more.Want it with all your heart.(Inner peace, greater clarity, outer beauty, awesome stuff — want anything you want.)
2. Have an idea, or two or three, about how to get more. Act on that idea over and over again.
3. Hang out with people you can easily adore, or at least respect.
4. Be kind. No matter what. (You can be kind and strong. You will need to be strong.)
5. Stand up for yourself. (Some people will take this personally. It’s okay.) 
6. Tell people what you’re doing that’s working. (This is optional, but it helps.)
7. Keep slaying what’s not working. (“Thank you and goodbye, I’m focused on incredible.”)
8. Have a party when you get what you want. (Kitchen disco. Close your eyes and smile. Throw a global launch extravaganza. Nap. Eat cake.)
9. Let gratitude ooze out of your pores. Be utterly dripping with Thank Yous.
10. Share what you just got with others.
11. Keep wanting more.


"Yes, I Will"  Michael Franti

Friday, January 16, 2015

the way I understand love




Sometimes I need to stand back and remind me.  I am not a product of their love…. 
They are not mean or uncaring; they just do not know me well enough to understand the love I need. 
Only I know what I need…..
the way I understand love.

"Reflections" Diana Ross & the Supremes

I can actually see what I think!

That is just how it works.  Creatives have the amazing ability to take an idea, an untouchable thought and with time and talent bring it into the world, make it physical, touchable, seeable, readable.  A picture, sculpture, dances, music, written words, and others, it does not really matter what the medium they are all invisible thoughts brought into the visible world.  We can actually physically see, study and come to conclusions about our lives from our own manifested thoughts. We bring intangible thoughts into the tangible world. I can actually see what I think!
"Fragile"  Chris Boti, Sting, Yoyo Ma

Thursday, January 15, 2015

I know….I know….the language!


I know….I know….the language!

But have you got any idea how often I have wanted (needed) to say things like that and didn't because it was not lady like or appropriate?  How many times I did or participated in things I did not want to do because it was “expected”?  But I am no longer a young southern lady, I am an old dying coot and if I cannot get way with it now I will never be able to get away with it!  

I knew if I kept looking there would be some advantages to this situation.


"All Star"  ortoPilot

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Outside the box...




So incredibly frustrated with the "western medicine mentality"!  They capitalize on fear to sell us more tests and services.  They do not listen or they listen but the cow-tow to restrictions of liability issues and follow only one (even if it does not work) treatment protocol.  And the worst part is they treat me like they are totally in charge of my treatments, my body, my choices and my life.  Out of desperation, I am trying something out of the box, something that allows me to participate in my own  life choices and healing.


"Ants Marching"   Dave Matthews

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

I have no clue what that answer might be!



I think this may be one of the most difficult lessons in life.  I finally realized that people I love are not obligated to satisfy me, nor I them, the next question has to be, how do you keep the love?  (Which by the way I have no clue what that answer might be.)


"Answer"  Sarah McLachlan

Sunday, January 11, 2015

As long as I know I am dancing!




That is a mouthful!  It is hard to believe, but incredibly true.  I find the “dances” are so different, most would not even recognize them as dancing and that used to concern and bother me.  I was ashamed and would hide.  I am learning, and I have a long way to go, that my dances do not have to be recognized or accepted by anyone but me….



"Dancing in the Moon Light"  King Harvest

Friday, January 9, 2015

A Big F-*-king Fence

Danielle LaPorte is one of my favorite authors/gurus! She has the spectacular gift of taking very spiritual and sometimes quite "airy-fairy" ideas and bringing them into our everyday life.  This is one of my favs!

“Keep your heart open, as wide open as you possibly can. Keep it so soft. Let it be tender. FEEL EVERYTHING. Feel your feelings, share your feelings. Keep your heart gentle, gentle, open, open.

And then… put a big fucking fence around it.


Make it tall and make it strong. Do not let anybody past your gate unless their own heart is open and gentle. Only let in people who are respectful, kind, interested and loving. Emphasis on respectful, kind, interested and loving.”

Tangled

This probably does not come as a big surprise for most people!  It appears to be my life condition that just about the time I think I have got things figured out, something (or someone) will happen that makes me feel like I have got it all wrong!  The fact is, according to the SOP (standard operating procedures) I probably do have it wrong, but I have to do what feels right in my own heart.  I am getting better at feeling more and more comfortable about speaking up for me, letting go of “stuff” even when it is not what others and the unspoken rules demand I do.  In the end, I have got to know in my heart that I did my best to find my own peace, to honor my purpose, to bring my gifts into the world and to be true to me.  I am the only one that can make those choices and yes, I imagine others think I am “tangled”.

"Headphones"  Michael Franti

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Monsters

The Art Journal group pushes. Until this week it pushed me creatively. It always gave me an opportunity to try different mediums and styles. Just a small page, to express another artist’s idea in any style or medium I want to try. But this month…oh boy this month I drew the art journal that wants me to share my “monsters” to identify them, bring them into the light and expose them. Through AW I have learned how to identify and manage the “crazymakers” in my life, and that was how I first approached this, but then I realized that monsters and crazymakers are not the same thing. I can choose who, how many or how often I allow crazymakers (people) in my life…MONSTERS have a life of their own, they are not people, they are not necessarily real, but the damage they can create is real. This month’s journal has made me openly wrestle with the fact that the monster and the healing are the same creature.


"Ironic"  Alanis Morissette

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Odds are....

How it begins and how it ends, are never the same.  The idea the concept seem so good at the time, but in the middle of creating, the doubt sets in and those same great concepts and ideas all of the sudden, seem stupid, juvenile, inappropriate, and embarrassing.   And the changing begins, altering everything while still trying to hold onto the original good idea. Odds are.... it would have been just as if I just stuck with the original idea.

"Odds Are"  Bare Naked Ladies

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

It's just a ride...

Sometimes others can say it so much better than me.
"Life, it's ever so strange, It's so full of change Think that you've worked it out, Then BANG Right out of the blue, Something happens to you To throw you off course, And then you....Breakdown, Yeah you breakdown , 
Well don't you breakdown, Listen to me…. Because, It's just a ride, it's just a ride, No need to run, no need to hide It'll take you round and round, Sometimes you're up, Sometimes you're down, It's just a ride, it's just a ride, Don't be scared, Don't hide your eyes It may feel so real inside, But don't forget it's just a ride Truth, we don't wanna hear, It's too much to take Don't like to feel out of control, So we make our plans Ten times a day,"
The secret is knowing ...It’s just a ride.


"Just a Ride"  Jem

Monday, January 5, 2015

Creativity is the greatest rebellion in existence!

detail of "Careful with My Words" 35 x 48
Working on pieces for Nude Nite gave me the outrageous opportunity to emotionally work through my latest cardiology reports.

Three pages about my test results, my general “non-compliant” attitude (I would like to mention here that those who complied are dead or will die, too) and down grading my disease to stage 3 heart failure. Book pages in the textured background are torn out of the book “The End of Faith” by Sam Harris hide my latest medical report also incorporated in the image texture.

It was necessary for me to marry those 2 pieces of written work behind the image “Careful with My Words”. The work rebels, it tells the truth, and still it keeps my secrets!

Whether I get in to Nude Nite or not, I have worked through the emotions. It really is the greatest rebellion!  art speaks....art heals!


 "Funny the Way it is"  Dave Matthews Band

At the end of my street...

The most amazing things happen at the end of my own street!  It is primarily geography, the end of my street faces east.  The sun and moon rise at the end of my street.  And because of geography and Cape Kennedy, I have watched men and women live and die being launched into the unknown of outer space.

The constant sun rises everyday over those trees, but the ever changing moon, has always had some more than “regular” significance to me.  I do not have any great philosophical or spiritual reasons.  Although in my opinion, one of the great mysteries of life is wrapped up in the moon.  It has to be more than a coincidence that the full moon cycle and a woman’s cycle is the same 28 days.  I wish I knew why.

Under a full moon some of the most significant moments of my life as a woman have and continue to occur.  Some are big revelations of love and creation others are just the simple realization and gratitude. I am a woman, I am loved and I am here.

Me and the moon will rise at the end of my street.
"Everybody"  Ingrid Michaelson
everybody feels the love, everybody steals the love, everybody heals with love

Sunday, January 4, 2015

It's Just the Road of my Heart


This is a big one for this year and every year!  I need to just need to get used to being afraid and vulnerable!

1.  My art... I need to just let it flow, forget what other people think, do the work that my heart screams for.

2.  Love... I need to quit being afraid of listening to it. I need to quit judging the right and the wrong of it,

3. The medical industry... I have got to understand, that they are the ones afraid.  I need to learn how to stand up for what is good for me and my life.

My heart knows what I need, I just need to listen.  Yes I am afraid, and yes, I know how vulnerable I am.  It is the road of my heart.  It’s smooth, it’s firm, it buckles, it falls apart, and then begins all over again.  Never a straight line. I am courageous!


"Road of the Heart"  Ann Reed

Saturday, January 3, 2015

I think this is what the doctors call "denial".

Another artist’s video I saw, says art, her art lets her express emotions and then walk away from them.  I am not certain I have ever heard that explained so well.  She finally put amazing words to an indescribable feeling. 

I was dealt a medical blow and there it is all over the canvas.  I do not know if the work is good or not, and quite frankly it does not matter, what I do know is that all of those negative, hurtful feelings are there on the canvas and not in me. I can stand back and look at them, rather than allowing them to stay inside of me causing fear and pain. 

I am not afraid, and the doctor keeps calling it denial, they truly no nothing about me. 
And…..Nude Nite is coming…..it is a 2-fer!  Even better!
"Heal Yourself"  Ruthie Foster

Friday, January 2, 2015

It’s Ok to be a glow stick....

It’s Ok to be a glow stick; sometimes we need to break before we shine!
The last quarter of last year felt like a “broken” marathon! My Mother died….I was downgraded to Stage 3 class C heart failure and they keep talking about invasive surgical procedures,….my insurance company dropped my cardiologist and hospital. (note: all of you complaining about “Obama” care have absolutely NO IDEA what you are talking about)…Overwhelmed with medications that promote depression and make me tired and lethargic.

And then….they call me NON-COMPLIANT!                                                  REALLY???? 
It is a New Year….
So when I come back shining you will know,
I had to break (again) first! 
They will NOT win!
I will NOT give in to this.
I will not stop dreaming!
I am strong....I will shine!


"Things that Stop You Dreaming"  Passenger


"The Higher purpose of Conflict"