Painting in bed.

“It’s never too late to have a happy childhood”
Tom Robbins 

This post was a journal entry from a few years back when I was caring for my Mom who had Dementia.

I have resumed my morning ritual of painting in bed.

I pull all my supplies and my journal into the bed

and just begin.

It helps me remember that the raw dread I sometimes

wake up with is just a feeling.

Caring for my mother is difficult.

As silly as it sounds I am still afraid of

her. Afraid of displeasing her.

Afraid of awakening her rage.

My fear is old and carved into my brain,

like a mountain road is carved into the granite.

How many explosions does it take to cut through

a mountain– or a kid?

And she’s just a little old lady

frail with Dementia–and sweet

most of the time.

I love my mother,

But still she can fill me with terror.

I have learned–well I am learning–

to have compassion for her and for myself.

I have hired a care giver again.

Four hours a week.

That’s not much, but it gives me a break.

We will see how it goes this time.

She has already started to complain.

I think the thing is to not give in.

I think the thing is to hold my ground.

I have never been able to do that with her.

Now I have to grow up and be an adult,

and I think the best way, is to connect

with the child in me–and have my happy childhood now.

So painting in my art journal is part of that.

I’m an abstract painter and quite serious about that practice

but in my journal i am a teenager painting butterflies and pretty faces.

I write down my sadness and then I paint over it

and it is surprising how my spirits

lift and my view of things shifts.

It is amazing how spending a little

time diverting my  imagination from

endless ruminating on impending disaster

can transform my whole inner world.

If you paint it’s hard to think resentful thoughts.

If you splash colour around it’s hard to have all that

mess in your mind.

Art can heal.

8 responses to “Painting in bed.”

  1. This too shall pass and in the future you will reflect on this time of struggle and remember that you were with the one who gave you life and assisting her as she departed her conscious mind and eventually as she leaves this world. It’s the way of life and your participation in that process will become the most important thing. Not the struggle, or the fatigue, or the frustration for losing a part of your life by losing much of your time.

    Willow trees and young growing things bend under pressure without breaking, because they have not yet learned to be brittle and inflexible. You too can be flexible and flow with the wind as your inner most storms blow you about.

    When you find your at the end of your rope ask for help. It has a way of finding you when you need it most.


  2. That is so beautiful Lynna. I feel the love and compassion in your words. How wonderful that you grow in that aspect more and more every day and every way. I really like what you are doing with the painting…I am going to add that to my Daily Alignment Practice menu 😉


  3. Wow I love this. The painting is beautiful. The pain is tangible! What did you use? I know you mentioned paint but it looks like pastels. I’ve been looking around for blog with similar themes to mine as I’ve just started and I submit my drawings of the lady of dementia who I care for. I have only posted 2 stories about my feelings an experience as a live-in dementia carer so far but you might find you can relate to them. I will have a look at your other posts and art work tomorrow as I really enjoyed this one. Anna


  4. Me too! I cling to the summer and love the sun and warmth that comes with our Indian Summer and off of your sharings and paintings, Lynna. Hope to see you soon. x0x


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