Monday, 1 October 2007

Walking Away

Sometimes, as we all learn sooner or later, you just have to walk away from situations and people. You have done your best, but the pain has just become too great. I have learned to open my hands, emotionally and physically, and just let go of whatever it is that I have been clinging to by mistake. Over time, I have learned that it does little good to revisit your suffering and let the anger build up inside again. The past cannot be changed. The present moment is all I have and I want my present moment to be as peaceful and joyful as possible. So every time I am tempted to wander back into those sorrowful places, I am learning to open my heart and my hands and give it all to God -- focusing on all the blessings at hand. Walking away and into the future with a trusting heart.

Sorry for getting all philosophical on you, but this is how my thoughts are running tonight after coming across one of my earliest computer drawings which I originally entitled "Walking Away".

These days, I tend to lengthen the title to: "Walking Away from Slavery" as the drawing shows an old man walking away from the slave cabins in the background that were part of his past.

I often marvel at "man's inhumanity to man". We see ourselves as the best and most intelligent creature on the planet and yet we are the only species to do the terrible things we do. It is no problem at all for me to believe in the reality of evil.

Before I return to happier drawings, I would like to show you a few more that contain a note of distress.

This next one is entitled: "Are we safe now, mama?" The people in the drawing could be residents in any number of different places where families live in fear. My heart goes out to the children who suffer and to the parents who try their best to protect them.

Then there is this drawing of an elderly woman holding a very young child. The photo I used as a model was in an article on various forms of dementia (including Alzheimers) in the elderly. The article said this was the woman's great grandchild, but she did not know who she was and the child, of course, had no idea who this woman was, but they still made a connection.

So many people suffer from Alzheimers and related diseases. The suffering caused to the families is so great as anyone knows who has had to watch their loved one "disappear" while the body remains. The title of the drawing is "GreatGrandMother"

Now I would like to show you some more drawings of people, but these are happier scenes and will hopefully bring a smile to your face.

The first one shows a young child in the arms of her big sister. The child is shouting to their mother: "Look, Mama, I'm the tallest now!" which is also the title of the drawing.

And here is another child. This one is busily at work gathering rocks and bits of shell at the beach. As far as he is concerned, this is very serious business. I call the drawing "Collecting Treasures at the Beach". (I still remember doing that everytime we went to the beach and never understanding why my mother always tried to convince me to leave my "treasures" behind for some other lucky person to find!).

Here is a fairly recent drawing of a wee baby being held for the first time by his auntie. What a precious gift life is and how marvellous it is to hold such a tiny baby. When they grab your baby finger and hold it tight, the joy of that moment is almost too much to bear. How far removed that emotion would seem to be from the one we started with tonight -- the emotions that lead you to let go and walk away.

I have entitled this drawing "Auntie meet Nephew".

And, finally tonight, I want to end this evening's tour with a drawing I came across last night in my archives. I drew it a couple of years ago. I think the photo I used was of Ontario farming country -- the kind you see along the shore of Lake Ontario down east of Kingston. I remember how much pleasure I had drawing this one because this looks like the kind of place I would like to live if I didn't have to live in the city for health reasons. I named it "Early Morning Benediction".

Speaking of benedictions, I remember one I learned as a child which comes from the Hebrew scriptures and goes something like this:
"May the Lord bless you and protect you, May the Lord's face shine with joy because of you, May the Lord be gracious unto you and show you His favour and give you His peace." Amen.

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