Friday, April 22, 2011

The continuum (The Last One, Does Art Heal?)

uAfter 5 months, I am finishing my healing journal.  And what a journey it has been since I started it.  I was wondering why I felt so compelled to write the argument "does art heal?"  Little did I know the road we were to take with Kerry's surgery and recovery.  God knew that I needed to write that in order to prepare myself for the days to come.  And now that they are behind us, I can finish it up.

It really is breathtaking!

I've added links over on the right side of my blog so you can easily go back and see what each topic was about.

Remember to click to enlarge

Rose Kennedy said, "It has been said, 'time heals all wounds.' I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone."

Those tags look a bit different when added to a page!

Brilliant words from a woman who probably endured as much loss as any mother ever did. Personally, I have never thought that time heals all wounds. But with time, the memory of the event does new events happen that cover it up.

I'm still amazed at how the pages just fell together!

God has been so gracious to me in my life - to cover my wounds with His love. His Son has lifted me up more than once from the darkest corners. There has always been light for me to grab hold of.

But in these past 5 months, I experienced every single one of the steps I wrote about last November.  I even lost sight of that "light" for a few hours when we thought Kerry might not pull through.  But at that same moment, I knew that no matter what happened, it would be ok.  And perhaps that has been my mantra throughout my entire life.  Because I have known the Messiah, I have always known that no matter what happens - it will be ok.

This story is tucked away - hidden for a time if I need it again

The beauty of art is that it not only has a healing component to it, it awakens the parts of the right side of the brain that lie dormant in each one of us. I find that it is soothing to look at something I have made. It is inspiring to look at something someone else has created. It is mysterious to try and figure out how other artists engineered a design.

It's so thick, I had to use ribbons to bind it together!

The simple flow of paint with water amazes me everytime I look at it.  The complexity of a picture painted with simple flows of paint and water astounds me.

And there's the chaos of a single sheet of paper turned into multiple layers of pockets and envelopes stuffed with thoughts and memories....hidden deep away for a moment that many never I may never need to read them again. Yet I know they are there.

Every pocket is filled with something from the last 8 parts of this

My home is filled with art.  Every inch of wall space is covered with paintings created by mom. How blessed am I to wake up every single day and look at the incredible art she has created.  I have a huge stained glass window designed and created by one of my sisters. A doll made by another sister. Paintings by another sister. And even my brother has designed a candle holder out of an old insulator.

Time to celebrate a job well done!

What more do I need for inspiration? Yet I have binders filled with scrapbook pages, journals I have created, items I have altered, dolls I have made with wonderful costumes fashioned by my own hands.  Hundreds of photos of jewelry I have designed and given to the hopes that it will bring joy into their lives. And therein lies the continuim. Artists who create art and share it with others to help them heal and/or inspire them to create art.

I am so happy to have it finished!

Digging deep into the recesses of the right side of my brain, after years of working solely in the left side, has opened up new paths for me to explore this artistic expression that I never knew existed. My mitzvah has become to give my jewelry to women in Israel who are breast cancer survivors.  And that has become my honor - to design pieces that might bring joy to someone who is in the middle of the healing process.

I like to think that together, art and I have come full circle.  And while art doesn’t heal, it certainly helps during the healing process.   I truly hope that by telling my healing journey, you are in some small way helped, or inspired.  And that you will share your journey with others down the path.


Shelly N. said...

Art does not heal, it helps us get used to the pain. Because of this pain and struggle we mature, become more compassionate and Christ-like. All things work together for good.

Shoshi said...

Jen, thank you for sharing your journey, and your journal, with us. It is truly beautiful. God the Creator has been gracious enough to give us the gift of creativity!

The whole thread speaks to me of Romans 8:28: "For we know that all things work together for good, for those who love God, who are the called according to His purpose."

Thanks again. A real blessing.