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Recovery Leads to Revolution

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Recovery Leads to Revolution

What happens when I take the time to rest, recover, and heal?

It turns out, I get new perspective.

Turns out I get a revolutionary perspective for all the things I do.

Art- As I stepped in to teach an art class for a friend in need, my truest self stepped out into the world. This part of me had been hanging out at the door, looking outside, waiting for a time that it felt safe enough to venture out into the world again. Now in addition to leading the lessons, I create examples of the assignments to share with the students! I look forward to the projects! I WANT to do them, I want to share them, and I want to see how the students develop their own projects as well. I am having fun, with kids. Kids that are not my own. Kids that are loud. But, it is art! And I love it!

Writing-  When I wrote my last blog post at 4am, I was high on residual anesthesia and in a hospital bed. I reread it a few days later  and was surprised to find that it made sense! And even more, to realize that I have a variety of things to say and I have the opportunity to share my words in different ways. Whether I edit someone else’s prose to help them fully convey their thoughts for an amazing opportunity, pursue an opportunity to write a column for the local small-town newspaper, or consider submitting an essay on “Why Quitting my Dream Job was the Best Thing I Ever Did for Myself” to Rebelle Society, I realize that my words can carry weight and that I have plenty to say. I am a writer. And I love it!

Relationships- This has been the big one lately. I have learned to respect myself within my relationships. I don’t feel the need to prove myself or defend myself. It is quite amazing the simple truths that exist when the veil of denial is lifted. But it is not all beautiful and empowering. Some of it is terrifying: like realizing that for the past umpteen years, I have been functioning with a faulty understanding of what intimacy is… After realizing this and sharing it with my therapist, he later replied, “Maybe intimacy doesn’t have to be about not being good enough anymore.” I had no idea what that meant. I bawled and cried on my kitchen floor until it felt like my throat was going to come out of my ears. And that was before I got the tonsillectomy. Now, I figure it means something about my self-worth. It means I have a whole new paradigm yet to understand. It means there is more room for me to love myself.

Self- If my understandings of intimacy and relationships are changing, alongside my perspectives of artistic expression… well, then it all comes together in how I view and share myself. I feel liberated, lighter, and more fluid. I wear what I want. I am confident in my decisions. I know that I don’t need permission to want to do things. I am confident in my requests of others. I know there are possibilities and I know a little more about myself. I know I am highly-sensitive. I know I need plenty of rest and quiet time. I know I can trust my intuition. I know there is nothing wrong with me.

Does it all feel a little strange? Yes!

Am I breaking like 15,000 rules I have created for myself to keep me ‘safe’? Yes!

Do I have any idea what these possibilities will bring? Not at all!

Am I confident that I can move forward? Absolutely!


About Rachel

Rachel is an independent artist and writer who thrives on sharing her deep appreciation for the natural world. She has taught college courses in wildlife identification, ethnobotany, environmental science, natural resource management, and cultural studies. She lives in North Dakota with her two boys, husband, dog, and cats. She enjoys gardening, cooking, drawing, writing, hunting, hiking, and snowshoeing, but is usually too tired to do any of these, except for writing...

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