Art and Anxiety

I spent most of yesterday in a haze of anxiety, never able to shake it off completely. At best it was a low hum of panic that settled just below my lungs. It always starts low in my stomach and moves up, to my lungs, further until I can’t think about anything except the panic.

I used to cut to relive it, not that it always worked, cause sometimes it made me panic more. Mostly because it comes with a whole set of problems and anxieties, like hiding it, or keeping it clean, or letting it get dirty and using that as self harm too….etc, etc.

Now I mostly suffer through it, with the consequences of not going out, or not being able to breathe, or think, or whatever happens.

I must admit, I’m still not entirely sure I know which is better.

But whatever, I try and get through, and it’s not like I didn’t survive yesterday’s muddling through, and the anxiety has passed, no more constant buzz. Until the next time of course.

I spent most of yesterday drawing and painting, normally I write, but I find when I’m unable to think like yesterday, and when all I can really do well is continue to breathe (and by well, I mean, I didn’t pass out), drawing seemed like a good substitute. And I painted what I had drawn on Friday night, which is easy (enough) and doesn’t involve too much of my mind, just keep inside the lines and don’t let the colours clash (I have a thing about colours, but that’s another post). It’s a bit like my own version of paint-by-numbers. Calming and easy and then as the worst of the anxiety goes, I can use more of mind and draw some more stuff for the next day. Or whenever.

Though, a lot of my anxiety often comes in the form of tremors or shakes, not so great for the bit where I have have to stay inside the lines, but I don’t care, I’m not trying to sell this crap, just paint it and show it off cause, well, my mother seems to like it. And often, if she’s happy, I’m happy.

Yesterday, I found doing this quite calming;

Just drawing over and over, and trying not to draw over the flowers I’d already drawn. I want to paint it, but I need to decide on the colours (I have issues with colours, again, different post).

I also did a couple of other things yesterday, but I think this come out the best;

And so I continue on with my weird little watercolours and weird life, feeling okay at the moment, but tomorrow will probably bring new anxieties. I have an appointment about an emotional skills group tomorrow, even though I said I would never have any more therapy.  I need something though, like a bit of a jolt to straighten out my head a little bit, anyway, we’ll see what happens.

Then I there is Art at Mind again tomorrow afternoon, more drawing and painting, and some chatting. And tea. Tea is good.

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4 Comments

  1. It does look soothing 🙂 I have days like that too. On such days I really think that I've made no progress at all with my mind. But then they pass and I know I have. It's life, eh? Like living with a really annoying allergy 😉

  2. There's a reason your mother likes your art work–because it's beautiful! My son the artist, has always said there's nothing more therapeutic than drawing or painting. I can always tell when he's going through something because, out come the art pad, paints and art pencils. Ironically, his best work is a product of his saddest times. And I agree, tea is good! 🙂

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