February 1st: how are you?

Today, I was asking myself if I should even write or post photographs here, not when those mountain pines are calling me and the world writes a story of seriousness and sorrow. I thought of taking a break, the same kind of break that one might request when they rent a log cabin or walk into the woods, they don't necessarily go there to hear the owl howl or watch the fallen tree branches crackle underneath their feet, it is more a matter of getting away from the world. I know it is in me to stay here, but it is also in me to run far away - How many times have I said this. Perhaps, too many. Perhaps, this is the language of my privilege - the ability to choose.

I have written and rewritten this five times already and none of the words come out as I want them to. Each time I end a sentence, I erase it with a frowning brow and each time I begin one, I tell myself, it is the last time or else I'm going to stop trying and hide underneath the bed sheets. I never realized how hard it would be to write today. I always thought writing during times of trouble would flow like music to the ears of a person who has been sobbing. Instead, I sit here, aimless.

I am standing on the arm of a question and I don't know if I'm going to find the answer or not.

The truth is, I believe, even when there is sorrow as there is now, even when there are decisions being made by strangers that put splinters in our hearts, we shouldn't stop pursuing what makes us happy and even more important to humanity as a whole, we shouldn't stop making art. Fighting for freedom and taking a moment to appreciate a leaf moving through the quiet street are not mutually exclusive. Caring for the well being of another and taking time out of your day to write a poem does not make you care less. Art can ease the suffering, but it does not entirely remove us from it. How are we to go on if we don't put food in our bellies? How are we to survive if we don't have the encouragement to do so? Art helps me to get out of bed so I can do what is right and what is right is to lessen the suffering of others or at least try. Sometimes, that means showing my teeth or singing songs that come from the gut or simply providing a moment of escapism for those who are in this fight too. It also means listening, really listening.

We are not wrong for continuing to read blogs that talk about flowery things like dresses, we are not wrong for logging off, we are not wrong for donating to the cause, we are not wrong for writing about it, we are not wrong for feeling, we are not wrong for howling, we are not wrong for protecting our mental health by getting rest, we are not wrong for fighting in regards to human rights, we are not wrong for planning the garden, we are only wrong if we rise in the morning with the desire to ensure others live only how we live, think only how we think or look only how we look. If it is in our desire to make sure other beings are hurting, then the time is now to seek professional mental help.

At first, I believed it would be better to hide than to write or share. After all, who am I but a Canadian woman? What could I contribute? I feel though as of now, it is in my privilege as a writer of a blog which is read by people from countries different than my own that I should say to you how I am thinking of you and my home will always be your home too.

What are your thoughts? How are you feeling? Where are you from? What can we do to help?
Leave your response in the comments and I'll make sure to respond to you.


  1. I am from Belgium Europe and I feel bad about everything that's going on too. And to read your blogpost gives me a sort of comfort. So thanks for that! And I too need to do things to protect myself from falling apart and at the same time I will do things to change the world as a butterfly that moves it's wing.

  2. Tina T2.2.17

    Oh boy, I needed to read a post like this. I've been so scared of logging into Facebook. I mean, I think it is good for us to speak up and fight for what we think is right but sometimes it can borderline on being so aggressive and it makes me feel sick. I've felt bad about crafting during right now because I worry it means I don't care �� not sure what to do

  3. You probably already knew, but I'm from the good old USA. How do I feel today? Guilty. Ashamed. Angry. Terrified. Frustrated. Sad. I feel like my heart is literally bleeding. I feel responsibly for the sadness and hurt of so many people, even though it is not my fault. I try to keep my blog pure of these feelings, at least much as I can. I want to provide a beautiful space where people don't have to think about cruel things anymore than we have to, but the truth is that I wake up everyday fucking sad, and who wants to be around that? So I do the best I can everyday and fight when it feels appropriate and walk away when it's not.

    At first, I felt guilty for appearing online that I have just moved on. I felt guilty for wanting to enjoy little things like blogs and lipstick and poetry. But without these little things, what are we supposed to do? Just sit around and be miserable? How does that help anyone?

    So... I continue to create art, because it brings me comfort, so hopefully it brings comfort to someone else too. Without it, I feel helpless.

    Sorry to be a downer, but it feels comforting to get all this out. Would you mind if I borrow this idea for my own blog? With credit, of course, OF COURSE! I think if we can all talk about how we are feeling, we can help heal each other. Recognition is the first step.


  4. I am also a fellow Canadian. What you wrote here, "Fighting for freedom and taking a moment to appreciate a leaf moving through the quiet street are not mutually exclusive." is exactly the truth and you have expressed it so beautifully. Just because bad things are happening in the world, doesn't mean that we can't take the time to focus on other things as well. If we didn't, we would get burnt out too quickly. Just because we enjoy some things in our lives, does not mean that we do not care about the sufferings of others.
    The Artyologist

  5. Anonymous2.2.17

    Hi Amy.

    I don't think I have commented here before but I really just want to say that I think what you said is important! Yes, we can fight for freedom. Yes, we can make sure we are fed too. If we don't hold onto what is beautiful, then what is freedom anyway? We are not hamsters running on a wheel, we our emotional beings. Art is an important tool at times like these. I for one hope you can continue to post your posts because they help me get up in the morning.

  6. Dawn2.2.17

    I live in Canada. My dad was really sick and just died and I managed to get home to the US in time to see him before he passed, I like to think he knew I was there. I have dual citizenship, but only had time to get an emergency US passport before leaving. When I came back home, they didn't want to let me in because I didn't have a Canadian passport, too. All because of the changes that happened in the week I was gone. I eventually was granted admission, but am so worried about what's going on in the States and the ramifications of what it's doing to my family, who live there, as well as how it's going to effect all of our world-wide relationships.
    I fell we can all fight this craziness.....but whee do we draw the line on how much living we can do and how much fighting we can do?
    When I left for my dad's beside, I was worrying about how to pay my rent, (which I still haven't figured out and now I'm late and I still don't know where the money's going to come from)but what's a more important thing for me to focus on? The fact that I'm alive and people are in much worse situations than I am, or that I won't have a home in a week or so? People are facing much worse situations than I am.
    Then I find this blog and I can escape for a little bit. Remember how the ocean spray dampens my cheeks as I stand facing the crashing waves....the smell of the damp earth in the woods on a mossy hill....the beauty of just taking a moment to breathe.....and knowing that we're all on this spinning ball together. The more we take moments to love, the more love spreads.

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