I have art covering the walls of a small flat on the lake overlooking the city skyline, and of an 82-year-old farmhouse down the road from an alpaca farm. Whatever the setting, art with a story helps me feel connected and at home.
In the photo above, the charcoal sketch on the wall behind me was done by my ex. A younger, longer-haired me posed for the drawing. This piece of art recalls the story of a woman who turned her back on joy for too long.
It’s funny how I feel more vibrant and comfortable in my own skin now, in midlife. Even in black-and-white, where the shadows celebrate the lines in my 61-year-old skin. My shoulders are still just as bony as they were when the charcoal sketch was done. My hair? I chopped it off years ago…but something grew inside later. Confidence. Courage. Joy.
What if we saw ourselves as works of art in the making? Canvas that we stretch and transform, bringing it to new life with brush strokes and colors and textures of our own choosing. A reimagined image that depicts joy, courage, and confidence as it continues to develop through our own eyes. The only eyes that truly matter.
Can we really rewrite our story by recreating a picture of what we want to be and who we are? Can we really reimagine life? Can we paint over? Start again? Reinvent?
This, from writer Brianna Wiest on her Instagram page, stopped me in my tracks:
“I hope you will find the courage to redefine yourself on your own terms; to know that you are more than what circumstance made you adapt into. You are more than who you became to survive. You are more than what you chose when you didn’t realize there was a choice.”Brianna Wiest,
Once we give ourselves permission to choose, we can become a blank canvas, ready for creating our own picture of what we want the life we’re living to look like. The canvas may be stained, torn, or frayed around the edges, but we can choose to transform it into a masterpiece. It will take time, and may remain unfinished for a long while. It may never be finished. But all we have to do is choose to begin, one brushstroke at a time.
I’m still painting my masterpiece, and I love what my eyes are seeing as I reimagine me in midlife. A me who feels connected and at home in any setting, because I’m connected and at peace with myself. That’s a pretty powerful picture.
Here’s to you being your own work of art. How are you reimagining yourself as you step out of the shadows of what everyone else thinks?
Featured image: Pexels photo library
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