Friday, November 25, 2011

heart transplant

 Heartbreak.  Humiliating, devastating, yet liberating.  I've discussed this before.  But what if the heartbreak doesn't come from some bastard lover, but from an old, beloved friend?

Our friends are part of who we are.  Their laughter is our medicine.  An old friend is there when you need them, won't judge you when you screw up.  Someone who loves you just the way you are.  But... 

Sometimes we pretend everything is fine whilst nursing resentment.  The outcome:  One moment you are nestling in a comfortable companionship and then suddenly you can't have a conversation that isn't riddled with tension.  And you keep finding yourself disappointed with them for failing to live up to your expectations.  Because of course it is all their fault.  But is it?

When someone has been your friend forever, you can get absorbed by your own view of them.  The person is that little girl who was your BFF in school.  Or your Maid of Honour.  Or your Kindred Spirit.  You behold your person, heavy with memories and glittery titles.  So what to do when the one who fit into your life so snugly becomes like a square block for a circle shaped hole?  And like a baby, you insist on pressing and pushing and hoping it somehow will just go through.

It takes real courage to 'fess up feelings of discontent.  To dig in there and prepare with thought, kindness, and ego management so as to find words that will not offend.  It is far easier not to bother.  And thats when you find yourself in the middle of a Communication Breakdown.  Its like God has pulled a Tower of Babel move on you and your friend.  So you have to go your separate ways.     

Deciding to press the pause or stop button on a friendship can be one of the most difficult ever.  But sometimes it is necessary breathing space.  It could be what is needed to help the friendship grow.  And for you to grow.  Learning to function without the constant familiarity of a dear buddy is like a painful coming of age.  Thankfully Time is a tender hearted mentor.  One that has taught me (with the help of Karma) that if you care, its worth it to make the effort to talk.  

So when I found some beautiful pieces of vintage linen in a xmas bazaar I knew that one of them was destined for heartbreak.  The transplant donor was an Angelique Houtkamp sugar skull, who gave the heart from his forehead.  The operation went smoothly, and I have almost completely recovered.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The return of the evil eye

Once upon a time in the nineties, I went to visit my brother who was studying in Boston.  One day he took me out of the Tufts campus for a tour of the city.  As we went around, he pointed out different features and details of interest.  One of these was a car. 'This' he declared 'is the stereotypical car of a Greek American.  As you can see, it is a BMW, and if you have a closer look, you will see that dangling from the rear view mirror is a cross and a protective eye.'  Wow.  Nineteen year old me was appalled at the uncoolness of it all.  I was particularly offended by the eye.  Why did they have to hang it there?  Were they afraid that everyone would be jealous of their fancy pants car?  I felt full of disdain and above it all.

So its been a few years since then.  And I seem to have developed a strange fascination with the eye or mati to use the greek.  It was one of the first things I tried to make as a newbie embroiderer.  I was not pleased with the outcome. I moved on.  And that was the end of my career as a mati maker.  No!  Here I am again.  But why?
There are two Australian blogs that I just love.  One is Discount.  The other is Swallow Glitter.  Their aesthetics make me catch my breath.  And with eyes peering out at you from the screen in all the colours of the rainbow, I couldn't help but give it one more try...

This time around I thought it would be a breeze.  But I struggled with the metallic and flouro thread.  And with my abilities.  How could I ever have judged somebody else's taste? This is rubbish.  I can't do this. I was casting the evil eye on my evil eye...

So it took ages to finish and a part of me didn't want to blog about this one.  But, having struggled with some demons in the stitching of this hamsa hand+eye I felt the need to discuss.  Embroidery is like yoga, an exercise in self-scrutiny.  Even if the outcome isn't so great, its all worth it for the things you learn.  I realised how much I appreciate all the amazing art we get to look at on the internet and how grateful I feel for it being there.  If you can, do spare the time to browse the links I have in this post and those on the right under stitchy blog love.  Each and every one of these blogs is a gem.  I dedicate my protective eye to all of them.

As for the finished product, Kimona loved it.  I want it in my room mummy!  he said as soon as I finished. Elias photographed it hanging in its place.

Monday, November 7, 2011

My Parliament

After days of headache from watching our members of parliament squawking away into the night, I thought I'd take the matter into my own hands.  My parliament is ready.  In the making I was inspired by many things I love about Greece; our ancient heritage, the colours of the cycladic islands, the stars of summer nights. 

There they are sitting in the windows!

I hope they imbue our silly lot in there with some wisdom, cause we sure as hell are going to need it.