Image by Marvin Meyer

Why Do I Paint?

I paint because it's the only simple thing in my life. I paint because it's my healthy escape. We all have ways we escape that aren't good for us.... but this is my one thing I can do that pulls me away from everything else and connects me with my heavenly Father. I paint because when I do I'm taken to an entirely different space.... it's like time stops.... and I'm floating above the clouds getting counsel with angels... I have my best thoughts when I'm creating... and God imparts things into me that I feel like I'd never be able to hear because of the noise of life in general.

It all started in an english class my freshman year. My father passed away a week before I started high school. I never told a soul during school. Of course, the kids on my street knew, but never told anyone until this certain day. My teacher would have us listen to this audio book and then we would take quizzes on it. She would get really upset at my for drawing the whole time we listened to the audio book because she thought I wasn't even listening. Once the quiz came, I had taken zero notes and never studied the book at home and got 100% on every quiz.

Why? Well... the guy reading the audio book sounded just like my dad.... and it was weirdly like therapy. Ever since then I found myself drawing in times of stress.... in times of processing.... and it's been my healthy escape from other traumatic situations that I've gone through. Needless to say, life will happen.... there will be times we think, "Why is this happening to me?! This shouldn't be happening to me. I don't deserve this." I'll be the first to say I've thought all those things.... but it's life. Life is a freaking hot mess and there's nothing we can do to control it, but we can control how we react to it. And the time we take to process it. There's always time to pause and take a breather. Painting is that breather for me.... it's my escape from reality... and when I'm finished there's something beautiful that came from that turmoil I was going through....

So let this be your reminder. To take a moment. You may be thinking, "Well, I don't have time to take up painting! I don't know what my escape is.... I don't have time to do that. That's great you found your escape, but I just don't have time to find me." Listen, you don't have time not to. If you constantly go through your life in a state of panic.... they call that fight or flight mode. Stop fighting... stop flying or running away from it... pause in your mess and just start finding three things your grateful for that are going right... take time to just sit and stare at the trees.... take time to read the bible in the morning before everyone wakes up. We all have 24 hours a day... we're never going to get more time.... learn that when you say yes to something.... you're saying no to something else. Start saying yes to yourself... start journaling bad thoughts and then just leaving it in the journal whether it's on your computer or in a physical journal... get those thoughts out and leave them there.... physically let them go.... when you get those negative situations and thoughts out.... let them fly away like a big group of birds.... just visualize them floating away and welcome joy, welcome love, welcome gratitude, welcome peace. Peace is your power. Remember that.

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