leaving your “self” at nautilus teachings

you have to leave yourself
in order to find your
recently d asked me,
“how come you don’t paint anymore?
i love it when you paint.
are you just writing now?”
there was no defining answer
or at least one i did not wish
to share…
inside he knows the answer
he understands my loss
my pain
my searching
for guidance…
it’s been a crazy last
year and a half.
my d underwent multiple
surgeries to fix aging
and over used
body parts,
our son and wife
bought a house here
and gave us a grandson
which has permanently
placed a smile upon our faces…
we all went through
the hurricane
which set life back
by months for
most of us…
so trying to find
creative time
to paint
dream up ideas
put a brush onto canvas
became difficult for me…
all around me,
what i do,
my byob’s that i started
9 years ago-
they are everywhere…
embracing this
accepting this
seeing peoples posts
of ‘other paint nights’
with friends who used
to grace my studio
made me think
just maybe
it was time to move on,
close my tiny studio
and find something else
to do.

so over the past 15 months
i have put new ideas out there to paint
nothing was working…
i even  wanted to get a faith night going, but….
then one day
i gave it all over to God.
writing flowed easily
new ideas to paint
got drawn out in my journal
and left to sit
on pages
without color
and brush ever meeting
on canvas…
i was born an artist
i never wanted anything else
yet one cannot just sit down
and make a masterpiece
some of them fail, yes
but most of my paintings,
i know when i finish,
they are good
because they speak to me…
i can see people smiling
and taking them home…
so those images i see
are all still dancing within me
beckoning me to play…
and play i will
when it’s time.
what am i waiting for?
i’m not…
i decided
to let this huge universe
sorta take it’s own course…
over the past year and 1/2
i have also seen people
post the meanest
ugliest more hurtful things
all while thinking
they know it all
have all the answers
and unless you agree with them
they drop you
throw in the trash
and walk away…i can’t do this.
i’m 55 years old
i love my family
i love my life
i love painting
being with my dogs
hosting parties
and fundraisers
and i love
seeing so many
beautiful faces grace
my studio to paint.
summer camp starts
and i have the honor
of teaching 50 kids
over a period of 3 weeks-
yes, my numbers of kids
is down
and no
it doesn’t bother me.
i’m not a babysitter
i am a luxury-
i know this…
i teach children art
for 3 hours a day
5 days a week
for only 100$.
my byob’s have been
$30 since i began in
december of 2008.
life is coming full circle for me
i am happy,
actually i am filled with joy…
this july i will begin releasing
all my images on canvas
my next book will
be available
and tiny bali studios
wall of classes
will have new things to paint.
i am growing as an artist
mother, teacher, wife and friend
just like God teaches me to…
i’m not going away
i’m not closing my doors
nor will i spend
money i don’t have
on advertising…

you know me
you know what i believe in
you know my style
and you also know
at tiny bali studios
miss sheri
“do it your way,
your colors
your style…
i’m just here to
put a little color in the lives
of those of you
who believe in me…”
so as you go on with your life
and i do the same with mine
know i am filled with gratitude
for every one of you
who supports me
and shares their beautiful life
with me…
i see you on fb-and i hear d’s question
“why don’t you paint anymore?”
“i just don’t feel like it”, i say back,   “why would i waste all my colors
on a world so caught up
in fighting, complaining and hurting?
i don’t live in that world
i live in my own…”
i will be at my
little bali studios
painting, smiling and listening to
Louise Armstrong croon,
“And I think to myself,
What a wonderful world…”
hope to see you all there starting in July…