This thing I hold near me illuminates all the dark spots. It warms and protects my every step; it rises and falls in undulating lullabies to my every breath.
A few years ago, on the brink of recovering from an episode of back pain, I discovered the need to draw. I started with a small face torn from a scrap of paper and built a little person around it. One drawing led to another, and before I knew it, I had created a whole series of souls as I raced to bring relief to my own soul. Sometimes the drawings were fairy-like women with fancy hats and contorted bodies, sometimes they were closer to creatures. Always, they were somehow me, but not me.
Drawing helped me recover. The more I drew, the better I felt. I think I grew stronger the more present I became. Focusing on the pen against the paper forced me into the moment. My mind stayed with my hand, hand stayed with the line, line steadied by the breath. No pain.
The little people, Fairies as I call them (even though most of them have no wings), live in an old scarf box on a shelf in my sun room. Like a collection of treasured curiosities, they politely wait to be thumbed through on quiet, introspective afternoons. I sometimes visit them when I want to connect with my creativity. They remind me of the stories that live inside, the ones that rest on my bones and resonate out in the quivering undulations of my breath. Somehow they saved me when I felt Life’s intensity taking over, so when I lay them out in front of me now, I get a glimpse of what it feels like to be invincible. And I like it.