Thursday, July 12, 2012

An Artist Blooms

An Original Watercolor by ZenMama
I was told I had the misfortune of being born into a non artistic family and therefore it wasn't by fault I couldn't color as well as my best friend, Donna.

I suck at Pictionary.

I've crocheted uneven scarves for every member of my family. I even attempted a doggy sweater but it was more of a doggy straight jacket.

I've "cast on" a knitting needle 45 times but couldn't knit or pearl to save my life.

My sewing endeavors are limited to a 1970's tube top I made in the 1970's. It came already formed to look like a tube top, I simply had to cut to size and sew one straight line. Nope!

When my friend's children were dressed in elaborate custom made Halloween costumes, my kids were ghosts and sad clowns who upon reflection, looked a lot like Heath Ledger's Joker.

I went through a craft phase in the 90's. I made early 90's floral creations in mauves and wedgewood blues with large raffeta bows and I attached them to wreaths and vines and hung them all over my early 90's house.

Today I gaze longingly upon my beautiful friends with their ceaseless talents to sew and quilt and make jewelry and decorate and live gilded lives. They inspire me to want to be something more.

It can't be true, this misfortune of my birth. My dad went through a jewelry making phase, followed by the painting years and ending with basket weaving. I wear his jewelry and have his paintings and baskets displayed in my home.

My writing has always been my offering to the world but it is not enough. My eyes are drawn to art and my recently awakened soul feels a need to splash color on a canvas and see if something creeps out of it in a serendipitous manner. So I offer you my first sketch with watercolor pencils. The paper I used is a tiny 5 inch square. It was enough. I had five pencils to work with and they were enough.

I am an artist and I am enough. It is called "Fifteen".

Friday, July 6, 2012

Spit Splutter and Shed

Somewhere between last July and now, I lost my way. That is an interesting expression, don't you think? What is this way, of mine, that I lost?

I used to write, sharing the brutal details of my life in a sometimes humorous but mostly shocking way. Then along came the considerably foul and wretched incubus brothers known as anger, bitterness, resentment, defeat, hopelessness and their inglorious mother, depression. I think anger and resentment stopped by first as evidenced by the majority of my posts; every reference point or interesting topic in my life ended with an embittered diatribe railing against the ex and his maternal representative.

I was pissed. Spitting mad. And that's saying something cause southern women don't spit.

But underneath all that hellfire, loathing, pitiful-me-pouting resided a frightened girl so entombed in fear she was cut off from her own soul. Having fancied myself a soulful girl, you can imagine how that felt or rather, didn't feel.

The first year after Mr. Sunshine went to prison, we did okay; meaning, I was okay. Then in August of 2011 I lost my prominent long term job. I wanted to move back to Oklahoma, to tuck my tail firmly in and run like the wind but that was a page I was not allowed to turn back. From that hot summer day to this one, here I stand, still pissed.

I wrote the previous post exactly one year ago today. It was enlightening in a not so uplifting way to read it and discover my feelings haven't changed much. I could easily tear off into a rant right this very minute, stocked with an arsenal of the atrocities committed by those who continue to joyously dance on the top of my head, including the aforementioned demon spirits. But I won't.

Instead I would like to give this a whirl:

If you read the last post then you will understand when I say I am ready to shed my own skin. Mr. Sunshine gets out of prison this fall and I am terrified. Our lives will experience another upheaval; emotional battles, court battles, old grievances and new axes to grind will splutter and reign unless I can embrace the celestial radiant light provided by my sisters Grace, Joy and Gratitude and our mother Courage.

Wish me luck, for a new journey has begun.

Zen Mama Out

(This post was originally written in July, 2011 but not posted until now.)

There comes a time when everything has run its course. Streams spill into lakes, snakes shed their skin and bloggers grow weary of the excitement that once enticed them to share their inner most thoughts with the world. It has been an enlightening experience, knowing people are reading me from all over the world but perhaps the most baffling aspect, to those that know me well, is why would I share my life in such a public way?

This is a difficult question to answer in a way that anyone who is not me could really understand.

What I have noticed of late, in looking at my stats is that I have acquired a dedicated fan base consisting of people, who for whatever reason, just get it.  They get me.  They enjoy reading because I speak the truth that is perhaps still hidden within their own consciousness.  Then there are those who regularly check in to this blog just to keep tabs on me.

I am after all, embroiled in a bitter post, post divorce battle with my ex husband/convicted felon over the proper means in which to raise our children.  I say it is post, post divorce battle because we had five years of happy, blissful divorce, before all hell broke loose. He is in prison for 24 to 30 months; yet in his own precious narcissistic way, he wants to control.

Thus, I write this very last public post for you, members of Mr. Sunshine's family and you, junior level psychologist who is no doubt gathering her field notes for a stunning PhD thesis.  I have told the stories of how Mr. Sunshine and I met, how it evolved, how it ended and now how I am left with a daily conscious practice of forgiveness and patience in order to survive.

I do hope, as I always have, he has a plan for how to survive post prison.  His plan to survive post Zen Mama didn't work out so well for him, thus felony fraud.  I truly want Sheri, the innocent, if not gullible psychologist to wait patiently and get the life she deserves. But I worry for them. He owes me a large sum of money for expenses I have covered. He will serve more time for that. The Waukesha County Child Support division is at the ready and waiting for his release date.

I want his mother to be happy in her own sense of delusion. And more than anything, I want him to emerge as the father my children desperately need.  During their prison visits, he speaks to them of the life they will have when he is free.  He wants to buy a farm, grow organic produce, travel to Italy with them, learn to speak Italian so he doesn't feel as left out as he did when he traveled there on stolen funds with Sheri.

All good dreams.  All very, very good.  But I was once suckered in to the dreams of a narcissist.  Speak to any woman who has fallen prey and they will tell the same tale.  My/your/their belief in him will not produce the desires for which they inspire. They can fool you for a very long time but eventually the colors will show.

A good friend of ours and an unwilling mark for Mr. Sunshine told me just last night the unfortunate experience he had with him resulted in his sister having to cover the church's debt in light of the fraud perpetrated upon them.

He swindled churches in the end.

But in all fairness, I honestly believe (after knowing him for all of his strengths and weaknesses for so long) he most likely had no clue he was leaving people high and dry.  That's the true beauty of a person with Narcissistic Personality Disorder. They know not what they do. He had done it with our siding and window business in Oklahoma, he had done it with me, he had done it before he met me with a long history of trouble burglarizing homes and cars as a teen in Wisconsin and I shutter to think he will do it again, this time at the expense, as ever, of the endless supply of funding, support and forgiveness from his mother and now of his impassioned fiance who has most likely bought into his story of subterfuge beyond her control for it is shrouded under a powerful Christian banner and she can see his is charging forth to save souls from the lessons brought to him.

If I were to run into her, I would want to know from her professional experience if a narcissist can be cured? Can that snake shed his skin? It is compelling indeed.

I will let others ponder it for now. I am too tired.