Last week I sketched out The Warrior, a start to a collection of work inspired by the complexity of a woman. To be clear, this is not to say that women have multiple personalities such as those diagnosed with schizophrenia. Rather it is to say that if we are being honest with ourselves, there are many aspects of us that make us whole. Sometimes we are strong, sometimes we are scared little girls, and sometimes we are somewhere in between. In each chapter of our lives we change and become more than we were before, based on life circumstances. Sometimes we revert backwards, and sometimes we leap forward.
This week the sketch is entitled The Abandoned, which can be perceived by many in different ways. When I drew this I thought about it in relation to that moment when a girl becomes a woman. Not in the physical sense, but more so the point in life when I started to take care of myself on my own as a young adult.
In my experience, I feel that I was raised in a somewhat sheltered and conservative environment. I had a strong work ethic, intelligence, and this idea of who I was supposed to be, but looking back it seems that those ideas were in some ways planted in my head and I wasn’t truly choosing my own life.
I wish that when I was in that very fragile state of early womanhood, that there was someone there to offer guidance in following my dreams instead of working my ass off in a miserable job in the hopes of one day making a good salary. I wish there was someone there who taught me how to respect myself enough to be in a healthy relationship. I wish there was someone there to show me what a healthy relationship looks like. I wish that there was someone there to offer me a sense of strength and confidence to know when to walk away from someone who wasn’t treating me well. And so in many ways when I hit those lows in life, I felt abandoned.
I believe that every woman has felt some sense of abandonment at one time or another. I think about children who are without mothers and/ or fathers, teenagers living in homes with unhealthy parent relationships, wives abandoned by husbands, woman in arranged marriages, and the list goes on and on. The thing is, all of the adults in my life in those darkest moments did the best that they could with what they knew at that time. As children and teenagers we expect adults to be all-knowing. But in reality many adults make just as many mistakes as children. Many adults struggle to have their own healthy relationships and their own personal successes, so it would be unfair to expect them to teach their children what they do not know themselves.
The bright side of this very dark blog entry is that by hitting those lows (maybe for some over and over again), eventually many of us become stronger for it, and shoot for the stars!
Stories about how art inspires and changes us.