Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Hope: Finding courage within the weakness

HOPE Quote from  Into the Light by Corina Duyn
Quote from
Into the Light by Corina Duyn

Keeping the thoughts on Hope. And Trust. And finding the space in one's head for the beautiful and the challenging...

It always takes me a while to be brave enough to listen back to my own words spoken during an interview or talk ... But today I finally found this courage and the head-space to listen to podcast of the interview, or more precisely, a leisurely talk, recorded on the 24th November with Bernadette and Stan Philips on 'World in View' -Tramore Community Radio.
See MixCloud link at bottom of page.

The chat was a beautiful exchange of thoughts about art, life, illness, disability, nature, (Zen) poetry, ability, boxes and getting out of them, eggs, presence, puppets, the importance of Fun, strength, transition into disability, new beginnings, and changing attitudes...

The chat flowed freely and I think we could have chatted for a lot longer, given the time. The view of the sea from this radio station made it all the more special.

Towards the end Bernadette read out a quote from my Into the Light  book-  about finding yourself in those moments where you know what you are doing is exactly right for you... and thoughts about Hope. (see quote in image).
... Hope with the capital H, where one sees the bigger picture of one's role in life - I was told, and I can see it now, that yes, I have found that place of Trust - of knowing my role in this world of illness and disability, and being an advocate about Ability.

The experience of the Dis-ability ... This Ability exhibition has - for me personally- been an experience of growth. Thank you Grace O'Sullivan for your words at the opening talk, and Bernadette and Stan for the amazing and easy chat, for helping me to Trust
I will endeavour to remind myself of this in times when I am a bit 'rattled' by circumstances, and unsure on how to handle them.

One such challenge came a week after the radio chat.

...  a display in disarray.
When I arrived at the Cultural centre to pack up the exhibition on the 1st December I was rather shocked (to say it mildly) by the state of the show. The exhibition had changed from an exhibit of 'stories' to what looked like a badly organised store-room.

I became aware that the puppets and tables with our books had been moved to accommodate a gig on Friday 25th.
Which is fine...
Although the puppets were returned to their previous location, they seemed to have been handled in an unkindly and thoughtless manner. They were thrown into, or on, their boxes.  The tables with books, prints etc were left in the back of the gallery. Open boxes with plastic wrapping flowing out of them on the floor where our book displays had been.

Seeing our exhibition in this way made me so incredibly sad. And I am embarrassed that people who came to see the exhibition, which had received such great publicity and kindness, would have seen a place in disarray.

For the past week I have tried hard to make sense of it all. To not let this strange event blithe the overall beautiful, positive and empowering experience.
To keep seeing the Bigger Picture.
To Trust.
Trust that all is well.
To still see the Hope with the Capital H. To find my courage within this weakness. Or perhaps also seeing someone else's weakness in their inability to see that, for the last 5 days of the exhibition, that there was something seriously wrong with the display...

After writing to the art centre, I have received an apology, and am assured that this will never happen again, and that they can learn from the experience.

I suppose the most challenging to get my head around was (is) that the whole point of the exhibition was  about Ability - about stepping out of boxes - and yet this exhibition ending had a visual aspect of being thrown in the boxes again.
I know this was not a deliberate act, but an unfortunate result.

To finish on a lighter note... two of the puppets - my own: The Reporter, and Miriam's Monk had their string completely entangled. An interesting side effect.

Reporting and Mindfulness all tangled up.

Seeing the bigger picture.

Trust and Hope.
Finding Courage within the weakness.

Thank you to all of you who have visited the exhibition, who have encouraged me through social media, through email, messages and phonecalls. For practical support and for believing in the thoughts behind this exhibition. My deepest gratitude.

Now, please make yourself a cup of tea and join us for a chat!
My interview proper starts at about 9.30 minutes in, but if you have the time, please listen to the whole program as it is all related and interesting.


My books mentioned in the interview.

Talk by Grace O'Sullivan

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