Today I’ve been struggling with what to blog and thought perhaps I might do one on introspection. It is something we all do from time to time. Don’t we?
Is it true that artists seem to do it so much more than others?
Who knows really. It is something I do a lot. Always questioning and wondering why things are the way they are. Why some people seem to get all the breaks while others don’t, for example. Though this is not going to be about that.
One of the things I do a lot of thinking about is my work and the meaning behind it. I wish I could say that I have a burning desire to produce work in a particular way because . . .
The truth is, I just do. I create these silent still images of life. I’m so drawn to them. Over the years I’ve tried to work it out, but the truth is the quest still goes on as to why that is so.
There could be answers in the way I think. I don’t know that I think the same as everyone else. There is no doubt I don’t have a quiet mind. My brain never shuts up. To get to sleep I have to trick it by listening to something else. That could be a book, or a movie, even music. My brain needs to engage in something else to get that stillness that is needed for sleep.
Recently I was told that I might be a bit ADHD. It didn’t bum me out. In fact, it was the complete opposite, things suddenly started making sense. It explained why my brain never shuts down, why I can’t keep still. In many ways it was like I knew myself more.
My husband had an amazing childhood. When he talks about it you can hear how much he loved it. I have always envied him that. Once our daughters asked me why I never talk about my childhood. It was a question I wasn’t expecting. I didn’t even know that I had never really talked about it.
The truth of it though is that I didn’t have an idyllic upbringing. My father was a selfish and controlling man who drank too much. It isn’t a new story. So many other people have the same childhoods. Drunken fathers who abuse them. Though to be clear, he was abusive, but not physically. I’m sure many of you are realising where my self doubt and lack of confidence now comes from.
It is hard to ever recover from being told your whole life that you will never amount to anything.
Sadly, my grandmother also said many of the same things to me. Then, of course, you become the black sheep of both families, mother’s and father’s and that sort of abuse is 10 fold.
Taking that baggage into adulthood
Once you remove those people from your life you are left with just yourself. Whether you want to or not you do start repeating all those things to yourself.
I will never amount to anything. I’m a lazy person. I’m selfish. I only think about myself. I’m not worthy of anything.
Wow, this is getting deep, sorry.
Anyway, you can start to see where my brain goes all the time. It is constant.
How to make it stop
Well, I think the reality I’ve realised over the years is that you can’t make it stop. You can never recover from that kind of abuse. You just have to find ways to help you cope with it.
So, the other day I was thinking what did my work really represent?
This introspection really got me thinking. Am I creating these quiet images to help calm me down? Are they my brain’s way of making part of my world silent? Is it what I wish the world was, or how my brain could be?
To be honest, I have absolutely no idea. This could, of course, be all crap.
I try really hard not to dwell on my childhood now. It is gone and I’ve had a lot of counselling to help me cope with it. There are strategies in place to help me deal when situations arise that can lead me down the hole into the darkness.
Though, I am really quite liking this idea that my brain is trying to create some silence for me. The quietness of my images. The place where there are no people and no one to hurt me. They could be safe places.
Introspection is something that we all do from time to time. Is it something you like to do?