Bird & Sunrise photo

Bird & Sunrise photo
Because "someday" is today!

Monday, January 5, 2015

The 'Fraidy Cat Appears

"Fraidy Cat-updated" 3"x 3" graphite on paper, © 2015 Tina M Welter  Pencil drawing of a wide eyed cat.
"Fraidy Cat-updated" 3"x 3" graphite on paper ©2015
 October, 2013.  It was an intense time.  My Mom had passed away in July, Dad had died the year before in August.  Jeff was graduating with his Masters Degree. We would be moving again soon, we didn't know where.  Along with the grieving, I felt very anxious. Change does that for me. 

All that year, I had been studying about how to start a business.  I really wanted to find a place for my art in the world, to do something good with it, but what?  Everything I read talked about creating a "brand", something that identifies you and your business.  Something that is uniquely you. "Good grief", I said to myself, "what could that possibly be?"  I don't really have a stunning artistic vision.  In fact, I often questioned whether I was a "real" artist.  I happen to like to paint flowers and cats most of the time. Occasionally a landscape, oh my, truly shocking, innovative stuff, I know. I thought about this question for weeks. 

One afternoon, I remember lying on the bed and just thinking about it.  What in the world do I do better than anything?  Then it hit me.  Fear.  I am the complete Mistress of Worry.  I am pretty much anxious about everything. Permanently.Terminally. Anxious. Since I was about six, the world has often seemed a scary place to me.  Anxiety attacks were standard, I just didn't have a name for them until I was 21.

I thought to myself "I am a complete "fraidy cat.".  I always hated being teased about that, but I decided I was finally going to "own it".   I did a quick sketch.  This little drawing reflected exactly what I felt like emotionally then, especially with all the new things I was facing.  I thought, I can talk to people about being afraid and what I have learned about moving forward.  Especially when it comes to creating.

"Fraidy Cat-original" 1.5"x 1.5" pen on paper ©2013 Tina M Welter  Thumbnail drawing in my sketch book of ideas.
My"Fraidy Cat-original" 1.5"x 1.5" pen on paper ©2013
  I can hear y'all saying.  "What are you talking about, Tina?  You've traveled all over, you've lived off the grid with no running water and built your own house for pity sake."  Yes, and I was often gut-wrenchingly frightened a lot of that time.  If I hadn't met and married Jeff, there is a pretty good chance I would have never left my parent's house.  Love doesn't completely cast out all fear, but it certainly helps!

So, that was 2013 and now it is 2015?  Exactly.  It has taken me that long to work up the courage  to open up and talk about this and maybe if I am lucky, I can help myself and some other people along the way too.  I believe creative expression in any form is a key part of being happy, at least it is for me. 

Disclaimer: Now, I know, there are truly horrible things that happen in the world when people have every right to be terrified.  I am not talking about those things.   I am talking about anxiety.   I realize I am not an expert or psychologist, but I have read and learned some good things from people who are.  I truly know that I don't know everything. ;0  Although, helpful suggestions are always appreciated.  :)

If you would like a list of the topics I am planning to cover this year, subscribe to the Confessions of a 'Fraidy Cat newsletter there on the right side of this page.

Happy Fear-less Year!  Thanks so much for reading.

>^-^<  Tina

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