Monday, February 17, 2014

Thought for The Day - Chill in My Bones

Each morning, I go through this process: wake early, leave the comfort of my bed, go to the basement and my carved out space. It's a beautiful 7' x 11' space, exposed brick walls on two of the four walls and a painted concrete floor beneath my feet. On many of the walls, there are reminders of the purpose of this space; my work, pictures I want to do "some day" and inspiration in the form of a poster of Henry Ossawa Tanner's story told in brief. But since it's winter, the space is C-O-L-D!!! I've put in a little space heater with a wonderful thermostat and it's off more than it's on! Sometimes I wonder if the heater "recognizes" that this space is cold - or is it just me? (it just kicked on again - thank God!)

Growing up, living in my parents home, the basement was my refuge! I didn't have art supplies as I do, now. I would use the basement to "practice driving" on a little game board I had, I would practice playing an old organ my parents bought years before, or play pinball on a kid sized machine. I had race tracks and train tracks I would set up and play as well. And there were the jigsaw puzzles I put together. But one thing I remember about that basement is it was always cold! Depending on the outside temperature, that space could be very cold, but I would stay in that space as long as I could! No carpet or space heater, no forced air blowing down on me; this was an old "boiler" heated home and the radiators were on the first floor! There were times I would either refuse to go to the basement or go back up to the house because I could barely stand that temp. It didn't matter how much "fun" I was going to have down there! I hate the cold!

Now in both places, there are times I simply endure the pain - this morning being one of them. And there are times when, once I get to work, the sensation of being cold seems to disappear. When I'm writing or painting, the act of releasing that creative energy seems to chase away the cold. And from childhood, I have wondered if the cold was in "my head" or was I really freezing? There are times, it's best to choose to ignore the pain of my circumstances and allow the beauty of the moment to grab my attention. And then there are times, it's best to climb back to a space that is warm and inviting. But it always comes down, are you up to the task?