Monday, March 29, 2021

It takes time, and trust, to accept change

To follow on from the last post of letting go of my studio,  I have to say that ‘it’ all makes sense in the end. (It always does...)

Work in progress on scrapbook-cover
From the comfort of my day-bed in my ‘new’ (studio) room

But first of all: Thank you for those of you who reached out and shared their thoughts on the continued changes illness demands. Also interesting to hear and read how, yes, these changes are incredibly hard, but that it is my strength to not shy away from them. That I don’t ‘freeze’. That I go along with these changes.

True. And thank you. But boy are these changes hard on the soul.

Long time ago

I have to admit that my OT (Occupational Therapist) suggested in early 2018 that maybe I should bring my studio indoors. She was not the only one who suggested this. But at that time I just couldn’t imagine how this could be done. There was so much stuff in my studio. How on earth could I bring this in and not totally clutter up my lovely home. I wasn’t ready.

As you read, I did make many changes over the years. Maybe that is what I needed to do. One tiny (or big) step at the time. Nuggets of change. Trying to go with the flow- although I ‘swam against the tide’ as much as I possible could. 

Yes - I remain stubborn.

So now - March 2021.

I have to admit that the move to bring the very much reduced selection of art and craft materials indoors was right. During the sorting out it was paper and some fabric which got my attention. I did save some paints too, but not sure yet why. When it came to the box of puppet eyes and hair for some reason there was “No Way!” I could let these go. The reason? I haven’t the foggiest idea!

What makes me admit that the move of having a (reduced) studio in my room where the ‘day-bed’ is was right thing to do, is the fact that I can do a tiny bit of something creative most days. While comfy on this bed.

Photo album-scrapbook

Over the past while I have started to sort photos (again). And I like cutting paper. These two activities combined made me cut up photos. Both I can do while in bed, on recliner or on my day-bed. 

I am hoping over the coming year (leading up to my 60th) to make collages from these photo cuttings. I decided to do this on A3 heavy good quality watercolour paper. In landscape format as they fit perfectly on my over-bed and over-chair tables. (One has to remain practical). 

After a lot of thinking and planning, I came up with the idea to adapt an Lever-arch folder to hold the sheets. With help from friend Pascale this was created two weeks ago. And how lovely it was to have a creative person here to help me, versus just carers coming in. (No offence to carers!) A bit of normality. (Keeping Covid restrictions and precautions in place of course.)

My brains, combined with her brains and ability, the basis for the cover was made. The possible covering for this has already seen many a change: from red leather to handmade paper, to fabric, to adding a photo, to adding the wooden tree from the shadow puppetry time, to embroidery...


This process of thinking is so incredibly useful to divert the draining energy around ongoing care issues and decline in health. As always I find it so powerful to be able to focus the mind to something positive and constructive. It still takes energy, but is more balanced in a way.

Having access to some fabric, scissors, treads, paper, etc etc in my ‘day-bed-room’, dare I call it my new ‘studio’?, makes it possible to do just a little bit of trying out at various times during the day. This would Not have happened if my material was still in the real studio. There! My OT and others were right all along. I just needed time to get there...

So, watch this space to see what will come of this photo-album-scrapbook-cover, and inners.


What is also very beautiful is that my idea to do this project has inspired two other creatives along the way. One fellow creative whom I had initially asked to make the cover for me and my friend Pascale. The significance for me is that I truly thought my creative mind had ‘died’. That I had reached the point of being unable to access it. It hasn’t. And am very grateful for that.


justB said...

Ahh Corina, I am not sure even though my body and brain is so much more burdened with illness that I fully accept ‘decline’ do you? Do you imagine ever getting back to walking around pain and illness free? I meditate about healing all the time. I do Yoga Nidra. I attempt to stick with Ayurveda recommendations.... I have bedbound almost 4 years. Haven’t been downstairs in my house since Christmas 2018. ( that was just for a few moments to see the Xmas tree) . I will never give up hope I’ll walk again. 🤗🤞🤞🤞💞 Big hugs Corina.

Bernadette x

Corina Duyn said...

Big, big hugs to you Bernadette.
What a challenging illness this is and remains.

I used to very much imagine a return to some health. I had it after the first 8 years of illness. I improved. Then since 2012 a decline, which is not stopping. No matter what I do, think or imagine. I struggle hard against the decline. But an acceptance of the reality is always a move forward. I can let go of what is not achievable. It gives a sense of peace. An incredibly hard won sense of ‘peace’. Which remains a struggle to fully, fully, fully accept... and round and round we go. But acceptance, for me, is key to living well.