Tuesday, February 1, 2011

blank canvas

I have the smell of oil paint on my hands. It's been awhile...
I remember i used to paint all the time when I was in college and when I moved to Orlando. I painted so much that eventually john got into it too. His paintings were also so different from mine. sharp shapes and bold colors. prominent use of black. i was all about blending and creating a wide variety of shades... wispy brush strokes... no clear lines. I was carefree.... John took his paintings very seriously. so funny. because in life we were opposite. i took things seriously and John had the relaxed carefree side. art was a different story. except music. because drumming was so freaking natural to him it disgusted me!
The only thing that got in the way of our painting was the price of canvases!!!
But there has been this one canvas.
It's been blank for almost 3 years now.
John got it from a restaurant that was doing a painting competition. He knew we wouldn't compete.... but it was a free canvas... and we knew how valuable it was. We kept the canvas on the kitchen table. It became sort of a joke. it was our "art." Just a plain white canvas. As we have moved from place to place and as I moved here to my apartment... the canvas has traveled with me. When I opened my closet it would mock me. blank. and needing a story. a color.
I have been thinking of this canvas. and what i should be doing with it.
it was easy.
i would paint something for john. a memorial to him. something he would want me to paint.

a sunset.

not just any sunset.... but one of his sunsets. i knew exactly where to find one.
i went into my computer and searched through John's cell phone pictures. I found a few sunset pics. John, despite the tough guy he appeared to be, had a very soft sweet interior. And for some reason he loved sunsets. more so than a sunrise. He would takes multiple pictures of them... on his way home from work, out on the dock, on airplanes, on vacation. i found one he had taken on the lake behind his parents house. filled with an array of blues. this is the one i decided to paint.
I started the base today.
the whole canvas is now covered in blues.
it's no longer blank.
the canvas john meant for me to paint over 3 years ago... and I finally got to it.
it was relaxing to do.
I have had a stressful day.

I went to the gynocologist. ( I know, gross). it's been a year. a year ago I was bragging about how I was close to engagement with the love of my life. i had no worries. i was completely happy.
then i returned back in may for sleeping pills. the doctor i had seen wrote down what had happened and so when I saw my usual doctor today she read through my chart and furrowed her eyebrows. Before I had even went into the room I started to have an anxiety attack. something about the office was bothering me. maybe because I had often taken John with me when I would get my shots to protect against HPV. it was free after all. but the shots hurt a lot and I never wanted to go alone. And John went with me... to the gynocologist.... such a brave man. he didn't care. as I have said many times before.. all to make me happy.
Let me tell you i havent had an anxiety attack in awhile so I had left my clonapin at home. i had to just push through it. my palms started sweating, my body shaking, my heart rate shot through the roof and my blood pressure went up. I explained to her what was happening and she completely understood. but why? why at the doctor's office?
because this is the place where i once said "why do I need to get the HPV shot? I only will have one partner..." and she replied "You never know..."
I remember how offended I was. How dare she say that!
I hadn't thought that John would die. Especially not but a few months later.
Now I am back at the doctor's office. And I thought by this time back I would be discussing about preparing for a baby. Not even close.
So. doctors office was a trigger today.
unexpected. unpredictable.
but. it happened.
now my arm muscles are sore (one of the post attack problems i get) and my head is aching from my cry fest when i got back to my car.

These triggers are wearing me down.
I have been extra emotional these past two weeks.
wasn't 2011 supposed to get better????


Ginger said...

Hi Autumn,
I am glad that you decided to paint something on that canvas you and John shared. I, like you, have always enjoyed painting and just recently felt a desire to convey some of these emotions onto a blank canvas. I hope it brings you some peace when you are having a particularily hard day. Thanks for reading my blog and for your words of support. I am here for you also.

Rosie said...

I'm sorry for your tough day, Autumn! But I bet your painting is beautiful. I still have the sunset picture you gave me hanging in my apartment! You are very talented! And I'm sure John loves what you did with the canvas.