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This week was an especially difficult one for me as I worked through some difficult emotions such as shame and guilt over my own inability to protect and mother my daughter in the ways she needed me to.

There are many reasons for this, not excuses, just reasons, such as being a teen mom and not having been mothered myself and basically growing up in insanity… but the pain remains and the truth remains…my actions caused my daughter pain when she was a child and she still carries the wound.

This week’s assignment in the Elements of Art Journaling was to take something that I had watery feelings around (sadness etc), and use the element of water to cleanse it as well as giving it the gift of compassion (at least this is my interpretation of the project).

To start, I wrote down all the feelings I have been feeling this week in Inktense pencils and went over it with a wet brush, watching as the beliefs I have held about myself were metaphorically washed away. For me this was one more layer in the healing and in lessening the charge of these beliefs and feelings within me about being a “bad mother”, “not good enough”. This was not about healing it completely and washing it away, but about bring compassion to it (something I must do again and again).

I then painted over this with acrylic paint in a blue green mix which I loved. This color was very soothing to me. I drew waves and wrote the word LOVE across the page as well as affirmations of who I am beyond this story I have told myself for many years.

Finally I drew a woman (I absolutely love drawing faces). She is one of my favorite faces. I drew her with only bangs and then copied her to cardstock and drew in the hair the way I wanted it. I’ll be doing this again and again with her.  Once I painted her hair a fiery red, I could see a goddess emerging on the page.  I love it when that happens.

My original intention was just to draw a woman with the look of compassion, but this girl wanted to be more. She was regal and beautiful in a way I needed her to be.  The jewelry just popped in my mind. I knew exactly the color and shapes I wanted and I felt driven organically to embellish her in this way.

She came to the page loving me and honoring me as a goddess, mother, woman, beloved. I love it when that happens. When something from within, from above visits you on the art page.

Art speaks the answers you already have within and most need to know at that particular time in your life.  Sometimes the answers come in images, figures, doodles, faces, handcrafted letters on the page. Just what you need. Just in time…art allows your own truth to come forth.