a river of joy

when you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy

My family and I took a vacation to Florida recently. We went to Epcot Center, which I haven’t had the opportunity to visit since I lived in Orlando years ago. It was my daughter’s first time to Epcot. Despite the heat and humidity, it was such a fun time. I felt pure joy watching her face light up as she took in all the sights, as though she were a young child again.

Joy is something that I don’t naturally embody. I have to work at it. Typically, others tell me that I’m calm, kind, or compassionate, but never joyful. I’m pretty sure that on most days, I don’t feel particularly joyful at work – more like drained. Creating this piece put me in my joy zone straight away though. I used coloured pencils, acrylic paint, some leftover designer card stock, and a little tacky glue. After drawing the figure, I traced over the dress using white copy paper in order to create a pattern. I then cut the pattern out and cut it down further into smaller sized shapes. Next, I used the patterned shapes to cut the card stock into quilt-like “squares.” I glued the squares using tacky glue onto my canvas and mixed sage and white acrylics to paint the background.

I rarely have days like today where I spend the majority of the afternoon dabbling in art, but I intend to to make more time for it. I’m reminded of this quote by Rumi, “When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” That is what art is for me, a river of joy.

Author: Mj

LCSW, Music Therapist-Board Certified, Author, Adoptee

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