Monday, March 30, 2015

Growing Pains of Spring

Early tulips and daffodils, Spring 2014
I have to wonder, does the thawing ground hurt like I hurt, in the spring, waking up from winter?

I've just spent the past few weeks, miserable in my body.  First, I threw my back out.  Trying to keep up with a fast-moving, much younger fellow PhD student, while carrying about 30 pounds in my bookbag and significantly more weight than his on my frame.  Whoo-eee.  For three days, I cried with every step I took.

Then, I got bronchitis.  As I type, I've been sick for a week.  Sick sick.  The kind where you can't breathe and are so tired and worn out from trying to cough up a lung that you don't really care that you can't breathe.  Cause breathing hurts, and well, you get it.  Sick.

Which makes me think about my body.  And doubt my body.  Because, when I'm sore and/or sick, I have to acknowledge that I have pushed the limits on this body.  
In my artwork, I pride myself on pushing the limits.  I could do things like other people do, make work that's similar to other bead embroidery artists, other fiber artists.  Who knows, I might even have a more "successful" career, be recognized in my field for the art I do.

In not following the rules, I've developed a body of work I'm really really proud of.  Sometimes, when I look back through the photos of pieces I've made, I'm amazed.  I haven't played it safe, that's for sure.

And when it comes to women's bodies, we are so rarely safe.  I like to think my artwork honors that, in its own way.  A woman's body carries what it needs to.  It just does.

Like spring, who always wins out over winter.  Even when it hurts, there are blooms.


  1. As someone who has back pain often, I understand where you're coming from, and I'm sorry you're going through this! There's nothing like pain to make us wonder just how much our bodies can really take. I started yoga a few months ago, and while I love it, I'm constantly wondering... am I going to snap like a twig? Can I trust my body to do these crazy things?

    I'm so glad you follow your own path with beading and fiber art. Your work is always alive and interesting and gorgeous. Distinctive. That, to me, is the highest form of success. <3

  2. I am sending warm and healing thoughts your way ~ for your body and for this weather that just won't let go.