Yet, this is the thing that makes art- paintings, movies, music- all breathtaking.
Case in point, I was honest at a public talk that I hated to give talks because I have a speaking phobia. One lady told me that I "didn't have to tall that". She was ashamed! It was so evident from the look on her face that she also had a speaking phobia and the thought of admitting she had a vulnerability triggered her own fear. I hugged her and told her it was ok. The more I thought, the more I realized many of my strong mentors are like this. Another anecdote are my friends who may laugh at bawdy jokes- even tell a few, love funny, risque cards, but to have one on their personal pages given by a friend? I thought I'd give someone a heart attack. IMO, I think that is sad. They were so afraid that they would be unfriended by something I (a stranger to the others) did, that they scrambled in fever pitch to get it off at 2 am. So afraid of judgement.... who would judge? Church people? Family? In-laws? How sad to not be yourself no matter where you are or who you're with. Take it from someone who has had the best and worst of friends and family: if they can't handle a curse word, they won't be there for you in hard times. If a word freaks them out, they're not worth the worry.
Not so for me, I'm incapable of living differently at this point. The thought made me want to upload my own art therapy paintings that are not on the mainstream Art Pages and discuss them. But, I have a new painting in mind. I've got a few under my belt already, in Art and People...pt. 2, but this one is going to be different.
The painting is an internal portrait, the happiest place I've ever been- not bubbly-rose-colored-glasses kind of happy or even one that doesn't come through hard work and slide-backs, but a true contentment and satisfaction that living one's true life path brings. Your own honest-to-God value system. This piece is going to have funny, bawdy, loving, disturbing stuff shaped into a beautiful and spiritual scene. Thats been my life so far. If people don't like it, they can take it up with God :)
This security is the absence of subjective, yet universal, anxiety that comes from being open, real and transparent. No one has anything to find out and I'm not ashamed of anything. It sounds like an oxymoron when I say that I still do have shame. As in all of us, its a constant work in progress and I'll write about it. I'm not alone.
We all have it. Its that fear that there is something about us that will stop other people from loving, accepting or connecting with us. This is the thing that keeps us from writing the depths of our hearts, losing ourselves by belting out the song to the point of spit flying out of our squinched up faces, giving that talk that makes our hair stand on our arms (and everyone else's) and painting our truths (beautiful or ugly) to the ultimate of our potential that cause everyone to gasp.
This is what Robert Frost meant by "No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader." Of course! If you're scared to "go there", how can you take anyone else there? How can we, as creative people in no matter what we do, offer any kind of connection with deeper truths of humanity when we are afraid of opening up and seeing ourselves and allowing others to see us for how we truly are?
Back to Dr. Brene Brown (can be seen here), she articulates this part about human nature the best I've heard. Her book, Daring Greatly is just about that. I was taken aback when I saw her on Oprah's Super Soul Sunday because this is the thing that ended me up in therapy with a category 5 nervous breakdown. See Art and People pt 2.
If its not there yet, I'm working on it.... (as of 3/28/13)