I anxiously awaited the sun being blotted out while hiding out in the house away from windows with my Giant Ooh Yellow Dog, hoping the eclipse would pass quickly. Crouching down on the couch and pretending nothing was happening, while facing my fears of going blind, I thought about the Shadow. Not the old-time radio drama my mom used to play for me on cassettes, but the emotional shadow. Perhaps how we faced this eclipse is how we face that shadow. Some folks were out there with special glasses, with a ton of faith, staring directly at the sun. Since I was not one of them, I must have a hard time facing mine.
The last few weekends at church we covered the seven deadly sins. Now let me explain this. We belong to a really cool church that was test-drove after many different churches that would fit our bi-religion family. Pastor Jessica is super sweet, forward-thinking, deep and a fellow introvert who does enjoy being at the podium for two hours a week. She approached the deadly sins like we should approach our shadow. There was no judgement or shaming, just awareness. We looked at Gluttony and were honest with ourselves where we were holding back and not trusting. We looked at things like Sloth and where we needed to show up. I digged this view of the shadow. Reveal it with a little light, let it out on paper, and then reframe it.
The other day I felt some serious shadow emotions. I was very upset and angry when my stepkids got into an accident. I felt ugly things that probably didn’t make sense or were “wrong” but what I learned was I needed to express those feelings because they needed to come out, otherwise I was guaranteed a whopping headache later. I had to expose them to the light to get to the other side of it regardless how they looked. If I jumped immediately into “being positive,” it was going to go somewhere in my body or hang on for awhile. And you know what? I expressed them. I felt them. I wrote them down. I drew them. I allowed myself to think evil, mean thoughts, and nothing happened. Thoughts did not become things. I didn’t destroy a village. Nothing was burned on the front lawn. And once I did, I got to the other side of it, and thought clearly and calmly, and had more empathy for everyone involved. I judged my shadow, and it was trying to help me.
So this week through my art and through design I want to play with shadows. Light and dark. And shadow puppets.
I’ve been putting together my introduction video for my Playhouse. Want a peek at my sketchbook?
Oooh. Pretties. Just begun. Still more to come.
Will you join me? How can you express through being creative and greet and meet your Shadow? How is it trying to help you? Some things to play with, experiment with. Planting a seed.
Until next Blog Tuesday, embrace the Sun and the Moon.