My Face My Art - Half FullMonday was one of the hardest days I’ve had in a while. It started off with nightmares that stayed with me for much of the day. I tried to go back to bed to start over but had yet another nightmare. Then as planned, I got myself together, got on my horse (wheelchair) and left the house despite mega pain. I went to the shoe store and cried my eyes out in the store unexpectedly. I had no idea the grief would hit me right there in DSW but it did and there I sat crying in my chair in front of people. I felt like a fool.

Later I went to the post office to send out art only to discover that it was Columbus Day, no mail. That would have been fine except I was already at my max of stress and physical pain. Then later the big worry happened, I fell.

Each fall requires an ER visit, not a slip where I catch myself, but a bonafide fall with a knock on the head requires an ER visit. I’m on 10 mg fondaparinux with a blood disorder that will clot despite. A fall could mean bleeding so a fall means go in. I hate that!!!! So Monday was really a day that tested my ability to endure the Lupus and its affects on my life. However, I wasn’t in the mood for having my butt kicked by this. I knew I needed something to pull me up so I looked to gratitude. What can I see good from this day? Despite the fact that my body hurts from head to toe, despite the fact that I’m exhausted emotionally and physically, what can I say to help myself through this? A short list resulted:

  1. Though tired, I am a fighter, a survivor. Though fed up at times, though I wish to stop this madness at times, I fight through and I’m proud of that.
  2. I’m an alpha female. I lead at times. I care for others deeply. I nurture and tend to others, both human and animal, because it makes me feel good to do it. An alpha female leads not just with sheer force but with dedicated love. My wars are hard fought on the front lines, but I also love intensely as one should, and for that I am proud.
  3. I have a place in this world. I know where I fit in. I know what my ‘job’ is and I know what I’m doing here. This makes enduring Lupus and emotional difficulties less of a burden.

I can’t always see the bright side of things. I can’t always list three things in the middle of a crisis to encourage myself, but when I can, I will, and I’ll hold on to them, tightly.

My Face My Art
"She speaks the dream" - availableMy Face My Art is an on going series of art  portraits with my art on my face. The series was created to bring to light what is commonly called an invisible illness.
The invisible illness becomes visible. It’s as clear as the art on my face.
Art shown on my face in the art portrait at the beginning of this entry is “She Speaks the Dream”

Title: Mindscape – “She speaks the dream”
Art by: Faith M. Austin
Size: 5.5 x 8.5
Medium: Acrylic ink, 98 lb paper
Finish: Signed, acrylic seal, unmounted
Style: Expressive, Art Brut, Outsider Art


One thought on “Surviving to Eke out Gratitude

  1. The fact that you can feel proud of yourself in the midst of setbacks and mega pain is a tribute to your strong character. You always manage to inspire me, as I’m sure you do anyone who reads your moving posts. Your honesty plus your tenacity are what give your words depth. Thank you for being so willing to share your experiences with all of us who are also fighting our own personal battles.

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