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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

My Precious Body

'Resting Peace'
copyright 1998 by Shiloh Moore
Watercolour on A3 paper.

I painted 'Resting Peace' 15 years ago when I was 18 and dependent on a wheelchair to leave the house, recovering from a full year totally bedridden barely able to talk or eat or sit up.  My mother bathed and fed me during this time and even this was a mammoth effort for me.  The blues and purples in the outside of the picture represent the ease of the world, the beauty outside of my body.  The reds of my body represent pain and discomfort, blood stagnant and aching all over.  This was my rest.  I would try to tune out the pain in my body and see if I could notice and take on the outside stimulus of the gentle blues.  Mostly I was overwhelmed with the pain.

At this time I hated my body as all it brought me was pain and exhaustion and thousands of terrible symptoms.  I felt caged in this body, trapped, being tortured, no way out...  

Now, 15 years later and still experiencing extreme pain constantly, I realise it's not my body that confines me and causes me grief.  My poor little body is so weakend by this powerful illness and yet it still keeps going, keeps fighting, keeps me alive to experience the love, small joys and simple pleasures of this wonderful world.  It allows me to experience existence.  

My body is not a cage trapping me in torture, it is an amazingly strong and resilient beautiful marvel coping with a massive load while still helping me experience this life, which beyond the illness is precious.  My body's a fighter, powerful and valuable.  Oh little body how I love you.

When I'm in a lot of pain I now talk to my body, encourage it kindly to keep going, thanking it for surviving thus far, asking it to continue.  The other night I couldn't sleep due to pain so I lay awake talking to my body giving it love.  I wrote this:  

"My Precious Body'
copyright Shiloh Moore 15/9/13

Precious brave body
keep fighting
You deal with so much
such a heavy load
for such young shoulders

Keep on Keeping on
Look after you
Stay strong - 
You can do it.

You live so broken
so frail
so invaded
yet you survive
and continue to live 
using great strength.

You experience life so richly and deeply
even when you are forced to have bedrest,
hour after hour, day after day

My body:  You Belong.
There is purpose for your being.

How powerful and strong you are
Despite feeling so helpless
frustrated and overwhelmed,
pained and utterly exhausted.

You are amazing
You are precious
Keep fighting beautiful one
Oh little body how I love you.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Sympathy Blossoms

'Sympathy Blossoms'
4"x6" watercolour and pitt pen card 
copyright 2013 by Shiloh Moore

A friend asked if I had any cards for the purpose of Sympathy cards.  I realised I didn't.
I haven't been well enough to get out the acrylics and do a big painting, but I thought I could try a small watercolour.  

I've been noticing cherry blossoms and how beautiful they are and wanted to paint them.  I didn't have 'real life' ones so I drew from photos.

I have been reading a beautiful book by Marie Williams, called 'Green Vanilla Tea.'  Marie's husband Dominic struggled with Alzheimer's and died in his early 40's.  The book is a memoir accounting both the incredible struggles and the wonderful memories of life with Dominic and their two sons Mike and Nic.  The love in their family is powerful.  It is touching to read.
 Cover of 'Green Vanilla Tea' by Marie Williams
(used with permission)

I have 'met' Marie Williams online and I dedicate this sympathy card to her and her boys. 

I drew the blossoms on my sympathy card, guided from the photo on the cover of the book 'Green Vanilla Tea', only from the other direction and with other colours.  
I chose the colour of the blossoms inspired by cherry blossoms in a photograph by a friend, Josie Eldred of -love to be young photography- .  I am a huge fan of her beautiful photography - she does the most amazing macro work, and it's even more amazing because she, like me, struggles with ME (Myaglic Encephalomyelitis) and has done since a very young age.  So her work is out of passion and painful determination like mine.  I loved her macro shot of cherry blossoms
in pink and this inspired the colours of my cherry blossoms on my card.

#cherry blossom #macro
copyright by Josie Eldred of -love to be young photography-
(used with permission)

So I dedicate this card, with sympathy especially to Marie, Mike and Nic. Also to all who suffer or care for those struggling from chronic illness, especially those who have lost their loved ones. 

'Cherry Blossoms'
copyright 2013 by Shiloh Moore
Original 4"x6" watercolour and pitt pen on paper

Monday, September 9, 2013

Wishes II

Poem 'Wishes II' ©2013 by Shiloh Moore 
'Pastel Abstract' © 2008 by Shiloh Moore

 It's been a few months since my last blogpost.  For 6 weeks I had a very welcome lift in my health and was able to do a bit more, so I filled my time catching up with friends and doing things I haven't been able to do for a long time and really miss.  I even saw a movie.

Then a month ago I crashed and am back in survival mode.  I've recently faced new challenges to confront.  But such is life, at least I have the hope of improvement once again and know it can happen.

Being horizontal for many hours each day, has had me thinking what's important to me.  I still try to send cards to friends and I wonder what to say.  In Feb 2012 I wrote some wishes that are on this blog:  "Wishes - Feb 2012"  I thought I'd like to try to write more in that style.  I wondered what do I wish for my friends?  What do I long for for my self?  

I came up with this poem that I've displayed on two different abstract pictures, one I created in 2008, the other in 2011.  I wish for these things sincerely for my friends, but for myself as much as anyone.  And I truly feel them.  They're what get me through. 

Poem 'Wishes II' © 2013 by Shiloh Moore
'Silver Abstract' 
Acrylic on canvas
© 2011 by Shiloh Moore