Friday, October 28, 2011


Karma using my foot as a pillow.
As an additional motivator I decided to join Art Every Day which is for the month of November, too. I will be counting making cards, videos about crafts/pens, doodles, cooking, sketching, writing, whatever. They're pretty loose with the rules.
The rules (which were made for breaking):
I keep the rules for AEDM really simple and very loose. I encourage people to make something every day, but my goal is to foster more creativity, so if you make just one piece of art per week or just one for the whole month, that's fine with me. The idea is to bring more creativity into your life, not to make you feel overwhelmed, pressured, or guilt-stricken. Art is loosely defined here. I mean art in the sense of anything creative, whether it be painting, drawing, knitting, sewing, cooking, decorating, writing, photography, clay, jewelry-making or whatever.
I'm thinking of setting up my art table with my watercolors or Chinese Brush Painting so that it is easy to go work for a while at any old time. I haven't done that for a long time. And I've always said I wanted to try the doodling zentangles--so I can just keep something by my chair for that. I'll be plenty busy making cards in November, for sure. ;)
I think I just needed to change things up...give myself a jump start. Leap into low gear! ROFL!! :)
Speaking a warm up for November...the prompt for today is:
Have you ever been between a rock and a hard place?
To me, that means not knowing what choice to make or actually feeling you have no choice in the matter at all. Most definitely!
The advice I always got from GA (guardian angel) was: When in doubt, do nothing. Step back. Weigh the situation. Wait. Listen. The way will become clear and you will know what is the right decision...the right thing to do. You will feel it in your gut...your heart...your soul. Have faith.
Easier said than done.
I was so impatient when I was young. (Still can be!) Waiting did not come easy for me. Learning how to become more objective took time. And trusting my gut feelings...well, I was always second guessing or talking myself out of negative reactions (not Minnesota nice, you know--LOL!). Stepping back and waiting...well, that was like giving up the reins!! ;)
And listening!! My mind would be going 90mph milling endlessly...trying to figure out the solution. You can't hear guidance if your thoughts are too loud. You don't catch the hints if you are so preoccupied you are paying no attention. But it is so difficult to shut that mind chatter off.
For me, that involved trust. Trust that I would be okay. Trust that I was worthy of being one of God's sparrows.
The last time I was between a rock and a hard place was when my health was so bad that I was forced to quit college. I could barely physically function, couldn't support myself, had been turned down twice for disability, was losing my apartment, had already lost my car, had no place to move to and no money to move...was so depressed that I was seeing a free counselor and would just cry my way through my sessions. (Normally, I'd rather die than let anyone see me cry!) I could see no way out. I'd be on the street at the end of the month...right after Christmas.
Out of sheer exhaustion, I finally let go of it. Handed it over. Gave up. Let go and let God, as they say. Even with all my decades of practice and seeing that it actually works...I still cling by my fingernails to the reins. But I handed it over. Quit the internal struggle. Felt much calmer inside...even though everything was still just as dire.
Within a week and a half...I was finally accepted on disability, would get a back-pay check that could pay for me to move, and even got "help" finding this apartment! How? I had been looking for something available that was super cheap because I wasn't going to have much to live on...and available immediately. The low income places had waiting lists.
Well, it was one of those naggy things that GA does. I kept getting the name of this complex in my head--kept popping in over and over--be in my mind as I was waking up or falling asleep--annoying the heck out of me. Their ad said 2 and 3 bedroom apartments--no one-bedrooms--not worth calling, right? Finally I called, just to quiet the naggy voice in my prove I was right, of course. Lo and behold, the lady said she had a one-bedroom that was going to be available because they were evicting someone. It was not even listed yet and she said they had so few one-bedroom apartments at all in the complex that they didn't even bother to list them on the ad. I set up an appointment to see the apartment. When I called back for directions a different girl said there were no one-bedrooms available...but I had her check with the other lady. No one else in the office had even known about it yet! I just so happened to call and get the one lady who knew. (Can you hear the Twilight Zone music?)
So, I had fully expected to be living in a dumpiest of dump efficiency apartment and having to put half my things in storage/sell them/give them away...and been happy to not be on the street. But I ended up here! In a newer complex with an elevator, dishwasher, pantry, balcony Dagan and Leah helped me turn into my little porch, washer and dryer in my apartment (rented), garage, and I discovered I could finally have a cat again!!!
God had better plans for me than I could have ever imagined or figured out on my own. :):)
I was a falling sparrow.
I was actually seen...and caught.
That is why I am so very grateful for my home.
My sanctuary!! :):)
Rock and a hard place?
Peel back those gripping fingers...shut off the mind in spin let go.


Furry Bottoms said...

Boy, you've got yourself so busy for the next few weeks! :) Sometimes that's a good thing. Keep us all posted!

A rock and a hard place, yes, definitely. Its supposed to be educational! ;-)

Beth said...

Dear Rita,

Oh my, I so needed to read your post today. This morning I was hit with another health problem and another doctor to see. I thought that I couldn't handle anything else, but I asked God to please hold my hand and give me direction. Now I have to step back and have faith that He will do this.

I am so thankful that things have worked out for you.



Rita said...

Nikki--Yes, I plan to be pretty busy in November. Be more posts, yes. :)

Beth--Oh, I am glad! But sorry to hear you've been hit with something else to deal with. Prayers and hugs!!

Parsley said...

I hear you on the 'being between rock in a hard place'. Guess sometimes we are put there to grow.

Love Karma on your foot. What a comfy feeling.

AliceKay said...

Karma looks very content there laying against your foot.

Sounds like you might have some good ideas lined up for your Art Every Day. :)

What an amazing story. I think we all have those "between a rock and a hard place" situations. Yours worked out wonderfully. You have a nice home.

Hope you have a nice weekend. We're bracing for a Nor'easter. :\

DJan said...

What a wonderful story of "letting go and letting God." And it worked for you, so beautifully. I am glad it happened like that, because otherwise I would never have gotten a chance to meet you! And you and Karma are part of my universe, you know? :-)

Queenie Jeannie said...

What an amazing testimony!!! It's very hard (read here impossible!!) for me to "let go" too. That mind chatter is the worst! I'm so happy that you have your sanctuary and your Karma!!!!

That art challenge sounds interesting! I am looking forward to seeing your Chinese painting!!!!!

Rita said...

Parsley--I've had lots of growing opportunity in my life--LOL! ;)

AliceKay--Funny, that was the fastest I ever handed things over (probably because I was so exhausted and in such pain-LOL!) and was the fastest things were resolved. I hope I remember quickly next time. There's always a next time-eventually. That's just life. :):)

Djan--Oh, I know! I know! I can't get over how lucky I am! If I was going to be housebound, what an amazing time...with computers and blogging and email-goodness! Who'd a thunk it. ;) You're part of my universe, too. I hike mountains and visit farmer's markets with you! ;)

Jeannie--It was hard for me to learn to quiet the mind chatter...still takes me a while. GA wanted me to learn to meditate...but silence just increased the thought babble. I found some very calm new age type music (without any voices or I just listen to the words) or would listen to the sound of water (bought a little water fountain) or something like that. With something calm and quiet to listen to I did much better. I discovered blanking out my mind was almost as refreshing as a nap! :):)

laurak/ForestWalkArt :) said...

karma always looks so content...then again, i guess that's a cat thing...right? aaaaaaah, to be content...all the time??!!

a rock and a hard place. i've been there many times myself. and after fighting to claw my way think i would've learned how to keep myself out of there,,,but nooooo.

you sound good. you have plans. you sound happy, motivated...YEAH!

have a happy...relaxing...feel good weekend!

Rita said...

Laura--LOL! Maybe being in those spots is just part of life. They always seem to pop up again and again. ;p
You, too! I think it's going to be a great weekend. :)

Toriz said...

That art month thing sounds fun! :)

Great advice; of course, it's easier said than done - as you said - but still, very good advice! :)

Rita said...

Tori--The art every day should be fun! I am not going to stress over it. :)
Yup! Easier said than done. But when I can manage it--works very well. Almost magical at times! ;)

Teresa Evangeline said...

I was apparently out to lunch for a few days, 'cause I completely missed this post. I'm glad to hear about all that transpired to bring you to Here. Listening was not my strong suit, until I had so many bad side trips I was forced to. Now, I cannot imagine doing anything without listening to that divine guidance. Thanks for sharing this.

Rita said...

Teresa--LOL!@ out to lunch! I was quick to listen when it had to do with others, but slow when it came to myself--ROFL! Terrible stubborn streak--a crazy combination of ego and worthlessness--LOL! ;P

Toriz said...

The whole point of things like that is to just have fun and not stress over it, so good call there! :)

Intense Guy said...

I think Karma was thinking about this prompt too - rock and a hard place... well.. we know she likes hard places for her head when she sleeps... so I suspect she too has "been there".

I like how you think - deep breath, step back and let go...

A lot of those rocks really aren't.

Rita said...

Iggy--LOL! Yup! Karma's probably the only one who'd be perfectly happy between a rock and a hard place...and sleeping soundly-ROFL!!
Yes, a lot of the time we worry over things that never even happen--true! Life is too short!! :):)