Saturday, September 19, 2015

Lion Confrontation and the Gelatin Hockey-Puck Gift

Lion  from dream
mixed media
soft pastels and acrylic
click image to view larger

Lion Confrontation and the Gelatin Hockey-Puck Gift

I am with a group of people that includes Sara and Erin at a wild animal Park with free-ranging wild animals.  We are on foot, not in expedition vehicles.  I leave the group briefly to climb to the top of a large hill, and from there, I see below me a huge maned lion chasing a wildebeest.  There are 4 or 5 wildebeests running ahead, but he has his eye on one and as the other veer off to the sides, he follows the one.  The lion and the wildebeest are running from my right to my left, approaching me at an angle.  Suddenly, another lion appears from the left and rears up, roaring, confronting the first lion.  The wildebeest escapes.  I realize how close they both are and am frightened and run down the hill to where the others are to warn them.  I am afraid, but the tour guide and others seem to think we are safe.  That the hill between us protects us.

We continue our conversation and at some point later, I show Sara and Erin that I have this hockey-puck-shaped gelatin block with which I am going to make a gift for Alden. Saturday, September 19, 2015

What does this remind you of?

First, the dream was very long and complex and I feel sad that I can only remember such a small part of it.
I am, of course, much sadder that I am missing Alden’s babyhood, Frankie’s childhood, and the other three grandchildren, too. L  I wish I were rich enough and healthy enough to travel much more frequently to see the grandchildren.  (And Sara and Erin et al!)  And I wish we weren’t estranged from the other three grandchildren.

I know that female lions normally do the hunting.  However, I dream most often of male lions, and they seem very threatening and scary in my dreams.  I may dream of male lions because I am afraid of men.  Especially roaring (angry) men.

When I was hiking alone in Colorado, at one point, I came out on the top of a cliff and looked down into a marshy wetland and saw a grizzly bear.  I had read about female hikers being mauled and killed by grizzlies and was a little worried and fearful. The cliff I was on was not very tall, maybe fifteen feet.  It was however, very steep, vertical, and I knew the grizzly bear could not climb it.  I also knew from experience that is it often possible to climb around a cliff.  However, the bear paid no attention to me and continued on its way. 
If I were in a shamanic frame of mind, I might consider the lion(s) to be “spirit guide(s)” with something to tell or teach me.

Yesterday, I went a field trip with my Japanese woodblock printing class to see an exhibit of prints at the Lawrence Street Gallery.  There were some gelatin prints there and I told Lori and Joan that I had considered buying gelatin plates to make monoprints at Utrech when I was there with Sam and Joan (and other times).  At the exhibit, there were books handmade from prints, and I told Joan and Lori that that was why I had originally signed up for the printmaking class, besides thinking it would be fun.  I thought I could maybe make children’s books with woodblock prints.  I had no idea, never having taken a class in woodblock printing, how complex the process was.  Cindy and Lori both take a YEAR to make a single print.  That would totally not be conducive to making gift books, which would need a number of prints. (Maybe potato prints would work better!)  Also, yesterday, I picked up a circular piece of plywood upon which I considered making a painting to go with the others I have tentatively made for Alden (which need to be framed.)

Which brings me to the topic of guilt, I wanted to make books and art for Frankie and Alden, but I have so many ongoing projects and there’s been such upheaval in our lives that I haven’t been able to complete any in quite some time (including one from two years ago that is partly done, Frankie goes to France, Italy, the Pinery, Welcome Home Alden, New Kid, The Welcome Home generic, and one I started for Gail that was supposed to be for last Christmas.  That was a version of one I made for Frankie, but I wanted to include the new painting, since I finished the painting—I only need to clear the gutter and upload it. And then there are a number of kids’ books I’ve written and thought I shouldn’t do until I finished the others.)  So I feel sad and guilty.

Once a project gets on the back burner, it’s difficult to pull it forward again. L  Because I’m immersed in my current projects, such as carving the blocks for my Japanese woodblock printing class.  Which I’m having insufficient time to work on because of my novel and the other things going on in our lives.

Speaking of guilt, I got to bed later last night than I intended.  Since it was early, and I didn’t get a story, I read a chapter of The Forest Lover, by Susan Vreeland, which I am loving.  Then, I read a chapter of How to Fix your Novel.  I was only going to read one chapter, and go to bed, because I was feeling utterly exhausted, but the chapter was short and I continued reading.  I read three chapters, and of course, that book has assignments having to do with the novel you are currently working on and one of them seemed particularly relevant, so I started working on it and then next I knew, I was eating (some salami) and working on my novel and the next thing I knew, it was 11:41.  I dropped everything and went to bed, but I’d meant to go to bed early.  And for me, being in bed does not mean being asleep.  I couldn’t sleep.  My goal is to get to bed by 10:30 and get up by 7 AM or earlier, and when I sleep later (or lie in bed later, more like it, because I am tired, but can’t sleep), I feel guilty that I am wasting time.  And I feel guilty for going to bed late, because then I am more likely to get insufficient sleep and waste some of my morning work time.

Speaking of guilt, I was reading a (“stoopid”) article about type A personalities which said that they are most likely to die of a heart attack.  I don’t want to be a type A personality!  L  (I don’t want to die at all, I have too much to do!)  You’re a Type-A Personality if your to-do list is ever-present (and ever-growing), if, in fact, even your to-do lists have to-do lists (or, at the very least, lots of highlights and annotations). “You know you’re a Type A person when you go over your to-do list first thing in the morning and you’re multitasking to a superhuman amount,” says Melissa Heisler, stress-reduction expert and author of “From Type A to Type Me: How to Stop ‘Doing’ Life and Start Living It.” So use your affinity for color-coding and list making to your advantage. Capitalize on your organizational skills to help your non-Type A family members and coworkers and motivate them to do well without setting unrealistic expectations, says Ramani Durvasula, Ph.D., licensed clinical psychologist and professor of psychology. Take charge of planning your next family vacation, volunteer to head up a new project at work or organize a weekend getaway for your friends. But maybe, just maybe, learn to delegate some of those action items.  (I don’t want to do any of those things—I want to organize my novel, my kids’ books, my art, and my love for Keith.)
I’ve been keeping color-coded to-do lists for years.  And I feel guilty about doing it and guilty that I don’t get everything on it done.  But there is more on it than anyone could ever do!  But I can’t leave anything out!  (Except what I finally forget!)  It stresses me out and the things I don’t have on the list also stress me out (like cleaning, for example!)

I have other characteristics of a Type-A personality as well, but I am getting OFF the topic of the dream and have much else I MUST do.