Monday, November 2, 2009

First Monday in November

In our Arts for Healing program, it is always a joy for me to see and hear the response of the participants. For me, a job well done is not only personal satisfaction but also the resounding positive response from the group. There is no telling when there might be an interaction in the group that changes the perspective or attitude of someone in the group. Today my goal was to ask the simple question:

“Why do you come here and keep returning?” For many of these participants, this is not their first Arts for Healing program nor would I expect it would be their last. I conducted informal one on one interviews with each person who attended today’s class. Here are some of those responses:

Rita- “this is giving me the opportunity to tap into the artistic side of the brain….it puts you into another world and allows for time to relax and interact with others.”

Nancy- “The time goes so fast and it is quality time I give to myself! You have to nurture yourself first.”

Janet- “Before I got married and sick, I did a lot of art…..when I am doing artwork I am actually feeding myself, something I neglected to do after I got sick. Being a mom, I did not want anyone to suffer when I was not feeling well. It’s nice to use energy for myself in this class. I start to feel like I did before I got sick.”

Becky- “I love coming on Mondays just to get out of the house, away from the kids and my husband. It helps to take your mind off your illness…..this is a place to socialize and meet new friends. I enjoy making artwork and it has helped me to discover that I am an artist.”

Ron- “I enjoy people. People are my life. Most of all, I like kids the best. This class takes away the loneliness in my life. After losing my wife, it was even more important for me to be around people. I improve my own life by being here.”

Vicki: “I come to enjoy and learn. How am I going to experience things if I don’t take classes? My husband wants me to take this class because he knows I need this. I enjoy a challenge.”

Jody- “I enjoy the class. There are certain things I would like to do. Some of the things look easy for people and for me they can be difficult. I am left handed and I find that challenging in a world made mostly for right handed people. I don’t give up trying.”

David- “Previous classes provide a bond, it is like a family here. We laugh and cry together. It is a place to catch up with each other. In each class there is time to form a bond. We judge ourselves but other people don’t judge us here.”

Rose Marie- “God’s creation
Beautiful sunflower
Gorgeous butterfly
Look all around you
What has been made
He alone created all”

Cindy- “I keep coming here. The pain has not gone away. When I am here, I don’t feel the pain as much. I can take this home with me. Sometimes rather than taking another pain pill, I can pick up my brush and do some artwork. We are a family. Going to my support group is good, but this is better. Because here…I am Cindy. In my support group I am Cindy with MS. I’d rather be just Cindy.”

Loretta- “It makes me realize that there is more in my life than just pain.”

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for posting some of my classmates "interview" responses.
    I feel that I know them a bit better
    now than I did before. Many of us have been
    together in the classes for almost three
    years and there is always more to learn about each other even when we think we know alot
    about each other already...
    Looking forward to class, more art, more writing, our book, and healing each Monday.
    Special Thanks to teachers, staff, and sponsors to AFH; We all really appreciate this wonderful opportunity to "transform" personal pain at class and some of us can "go there" at home as well. At class we interact, paint, talk, write, learn and "bond" as people who are not defined by our "dis-abilities"...Kathie