Posts Tagged ‘physical’

A Left-Leaning Quandary

February 15, 2016

AnythingLeft-Handed.jpgWhen we come into this world, we are an enigma, unaccompanied by an external users manual but driven primarily by need and instinct. But if we imagine that a users’ manual  is embedded within us as a script which guides us through the roles we play in each phase of our lives, we soon learn its limitations. It may open our awareness of the world relative to our physical and emotional development but if we are to surmount the obstructions that occasionally beset us in our relationships, careers and our own physical/psychological health then we must work to interpret the nuances between its lines.

This week, following the surgical repair of my right rotator cuff, I sit here, with said arm in a sling, thinking about how, when we are in good health, we easily assume that our bodies exist to serve the requests and desires of our minds; quietly and without complaint.

Yet when we encounter illness or injury to our bodies, the inverse dominates our days and nights. Like a willful child, my mind desperately wants to leave the confines of this injured body, inhabit another one like a change of clothing, thus enabled to resume the life it has long known.

In my current state, the mix of patience and impatience of my spouse as he tends to my needs in addition to his own has only emphasized these ideas. Though many crises, large and small have punctuated the course of our long marriage, these have only served to focus my awareness and gratitude for his love and dedication.

Though I write and draw with my left hand, I am right-hand dominant for most other actions, particularly the digital aspect of my illustration. Consequently, my work will be fairly difficult over the next few months but physical therapy should eventually make a difference. Until then, an illustration from my recent book, Notes From London: Above & Below (Imaginarius Editions, 2015)*, shown above, and a detail from ‘Worlds Within(Codex Gastropoda series, 2012) shown below,  seem apropos at the moment..

So, even as my left hand and arm are doing double duty with no little complaint, I am imagining the new drawings and essays to come upon full recovery. I’ve posted these observations as encouragement to any of you who might be experiencing a similar situation and simply because I am unaccustomed to being completely idle. The latter is probably a directive from my own internal users’ manual which may look like this:AntiqueBookClosed+HandClasps

Further interpreting its nuances also reveals a new perspective on the trajectory of my own life. Though each incident that occurs seems discrete, it is not. Rather, it is only one of the links forming a sort of tight rope that resonates with the music of uncertainty, fear, challenge, sorrow, love and joy.  Accordingly, I must continually balance my roles as daughter, wife, mother, artist, illustrator, writer, teacher and designer in order to create and maintain the lyrical narrative that keeps my eyes open to the myriad possibilities ahead…

*Notes From London: Above & Below (Imaginarius Editions, 2015) may be ordered at: http://magiceyegallery.com/BookPage.aspx?id=3

Kickstarter Update #8: A Blessing For Body & Spirit

August 18, 2013

Image

Dear Backers and Imaginarius Readers,

Today,  for the eighth update on my Kickstarter project, I have posted the ninth of the thirty-six blessings that will comprise my book, An Illumination Of Blessings. With the illustration above, I’ve chosen to interpret the Mi Shebeirach (May the One Who Blesses). A full explanation on the visual symbolism in this illustration will be in the book’s commentary. But for now, here is an excerpt:

The Mi Shebeirach is recited for those in need of healing, whether spiritual, physical or both. The first recorded appearance of this blessing/prayer was in the 12th century French prayerbook, The Vitry Mahzor compiled by the Talmudist Simcha ben Samuel of Vitry. It’s original intention was to petition for the well-being of the  community and indeed its essence is preserved in the Amidah, as one of the set of prayers recited three times daily. But in recent times, in Reform and Conservative practices it is recited after the Torah reading and includes names (usually their Hebrew names) of specific individuals in need of healing by those praying on their behalf.

As I thought about the significance of this blessing/prayer and why it has changed over time, I realized that the Mi Shebeirach also tells us that we must partner with the G-d Who is The Source of Life by participating in our own recovery or in that of a loved one(s) to the best of our ability, whether it be through seeking medical intervention or by recognition of an ailing spirit that can manifest as physical illness. Forgiveness of oneself and/or others is one of the elements at the core of this process. Although the future outcome of serious illness is often unclear and sometimes all we can ask for is strength to endure, I feel this blessing  speaks for all of us living and working together as community to understand the bigger picture of life and our role in it.

For those of you and those within your extended circle in need of healing, I  wish you a full and speedy recovery of body and spirit.