Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Some Essentials on My Packing List

"In every situation at the beginning or end of the workday, you have a choice. You can look back or you can look forward. My advice: look forward. Always think about the next day. Don't go into the studio thinking, 'Hmmmm, let's see, what was I doing yesterday?' It takes more energy to twist yourself around and look back than it does to face forward.'" Twyla Tharp

There's a nasty hairy green verging on black fear roaming around the lowest levels of my slimiest thoughts: I start painting in Mexico and I will have gotten no farther than I was when I left a year ago. "Oh, still drawing circles," my teacher will say. Today's quote resonates because I know I have a choice. I can look back or I can look forward. I can be open to seeing what shows up on the canvas. I can free myself from what's worked in the past and also what hasn't. These thoughts, for example, don't work. I may still paint circles, but they aren't the same.

As I pack my clothes, I must remember to pack how far I've come this year. I'll pack the list of what I've accomplished since I last painted with Flora. I don't want to pack the voice that says anything but, "You have a choice." I'll pack some drawings to remind me how much people enjoy them and how much I enjoy drawing them. And I'm packing Twyla Tharp too.

Yesterday in a New Yorker review of a new production of Annie, the critic says in the seventies when it came out, it suited the times. We were more optimistic. We could afford to look back and make a musical about the depression and believe "the sun will come out tomorrow." Today we are again in a depression, and looking back to another one doesn't cheer us at all. It doesn't work anymore. And neither do my old thoughts about myself. Knock it off!

Baruch ata I go again. I know. I know. You're shaking your head and it really is nuts.  These thoughts are temporarily passing through, and now that I've acknowledged them, I can let them go. You know I'm just working my way through stuff getting ready to go. I pack and unpack until I've got it right. Amen

1 comment:

  1. Yes, look forward! Always the best plan. I hope you enjoy you time in Mexico!