Friday, April 9, 2010

Embracing your Golden Shadow

It has been over a month since I got back from Tucson. Much has happened since I returned from my adventure. Now I am dealing with another kind of adventure . . . healing from eyelid surgery. I have to admit, it's not nearly as fun as Tucson! I knew when I got back from my trip, I would have to have this skin cancer taken off from my lower right eyelid. I just didn't know that they would end up taking 75% of my lower lid. I had been dealing with irritation in that eye for the last two years and I could see a white area inside of my lid. The eye doctor thought it was a clogged pore. I kept putting warm compresses on it and using eye bright. However, it kept bothering me. Finally, the eye doctor recommended I see an eyelid specialist. I ended up finding out that it was basal cell carcinoma two days before I left for Tucson.

After having 75% of my eyelid removed, I went to the eyelid specialist the next day for a repair. He took skin from behind my ear and did a skin graft on my lower eyelid. In order for the skin graft to take hold and live, it needs a blood supply. So, they take a flap of skin from the inside of my upper eyelid and pull it down to the skin graft. (I know, I wasn't too thrilled with the idea of this either) Then they sew the upper flap to the skin graft. This means that they have to sew your eye shut so that it can heal fully. I have had my eye sewn shut now since March 17th. I will get it re-opened on the 19th of April! I can't wait. I only have over a week now.

I have been exploring this whole theme of having my eye closed. I found out that in Greek mythology, the right eye represents the sun. The left eye, which I can only use now, represents the moon. This makes a lot of sense to me, as I have been going within a lot more since I had the surgery. Only having the ability to see out of one eye, makes you rely more on your other senses and your intuition to do things. I have been a lot slower at doing things. It is even difficult for me to do my art, as it tires the one working eye and my depth of perception is way off. The moon also represents the hidden side of yourself that you don't always acknowledge. Some people call this your shadow side.

I had to ask myself, "What am I not seeing in my life?" I was asking myself this question when I was in Tucson, as I knew I had skin cancer at that time. I kept thinking that it must be something bad that I wasn't seeing about myself. (We all assume the worst about ourselves.) Little did I realize, until some time passed, that I wasn't seeing the good in myself. Having my show on display at the DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun, helped me to see how gifted I was. People kept telling me how creative and talented I was. I was getting positive feedback about my art, which helped me to really see myself in a different light. I was touching people's lives in positive ways. I knew then that I needed to embrace my gifts and my golden aspects. This made me realize that we do have "golden shadows" as well. Our shadow side isn't always dark, more often than not, it is your beauty and light that you are holding back.

So, I have been able to complete two shadow boxes since I have had my surgery. Both of them deal with this new way of seeing myself. They also deal with listening to my own intuition and trusting my inner knowledge. It has been very healing for me to create these pieces while I am patiently waiting for the opening of my eye!