I’m busy revising my manuscript “Kidjacked- A Father’s Story” while working full time. The entire process is akin to having bamboo shoots shoved between my finger nails without making much noise. Impossible!
I was venting to my friend Sandy who’s the mother of three and a wonderful painter. “Try finger painting”, she exclaimed. A teacher of hers in college liked to talk about the healing factors painting provided. Looking at her like a dog would his owner and tilting my head, I reminded her that I could barely paint a stick figure.
I needed to reduce my stress and was happy to drive to the hard to find local art supply store. As I walked in I immediately knew that I was in a foreign land surrounded by canvas, paint, easels and brushes as several content customers filled their carts. I found a large pad of paper and five colors of paint. I was tempted to buy brushes too, but my mission required I digress back to age three where my less- than- advanced skills in sketching came to an abrupt halt.
Back at home, I spread the newspaper from Sunday out on the table, opened my pad and paint jars and began to create absolutely nothing. Where the hell is the paper towel? I can’t mix the colors on my fingers! I located the roll on the counter and went through half of it in twenty minutes. Stress was building, not decreasing. I really suck at this, was all I could think until I decided to close my eyes.
That’s when it happened. A natural flowing of fingers creating art that was below an elephant’s artistic sense was occurring, but I was having fun. I stopped thinking and simply let it flow and as I did I began to physically feel stress release through my fingers. I smiled. I laughed. I mixed colors that had no right meeting each other and didn’t care.
Tonight, as I look back at four days of stress reducing art with a glass of Jack Daniels and ice, I can’t really decipher any figures. There are no bodies, buildings or monuments that pop out, but damn if it didn’t reduce my stress. Now, if I could just get the paint out from between my finger nails, life would be a fantastically painted bowl of fruit.