Something From Nothing

A couple of years ago, during a manic episode, I gave away all my art supplies–every stamp, scrap of paper and paint brush.  The notion came into my head that I needed to “make room” for my writing, to clear out any other drains on my creativity.  Since I had previously given away meaningful belongings as a spiritual practice, this seemed very natural.  I hadn’t yet recognized the black and white thinking that came with my BP episodes or how to keep from acting on them.

When my calm and steady mind returned, and Art started tapping on the door to be let out, I realized creativity was not an Either/Or proposition.  Art requires And/Also.  The answer to its tapping on our inner doors is always “yes.”

I was living with my best friend and her husband at the time, and she offered the use of her art supplies.  But I decided to dive deeper into discovery.  I used what I could find in the house–coffee and teas for stains, markers and pens scavenged out of a closet, images and text cut from magazines and calendars, leaves and seeds found on walks.

Because I could make something from nothing, I relaxed.  I could take my time acquiring new materials and tools.  And I could begin to say yes to the other forms of creativity shyly asking for expression.

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