You know that pesky Universe...it provided me a small opportunity to practice just that.
A sudden heightened sensitivity to smoke (any kind at all - fires, cigarettes, sage, weed - all of which are plentiful here in the PNW) had me reaching into my toolbox to bring out the DNRS (dynamic neural retraining) techniques I had used for chemical sensitivity some years ago. In a nutshell, I was supposed to focus on happy thoughts (laughing babies, funny cat videos, outrageously hilarious jokes, beautiful sunsets, sweet memories) in the midst of a racing heartbeat and an adrenaline flood. It seemed overwhelmingly impossible in the moment...but I kept with it. And guess what? Like the meadowlark, I could find the beauty in the moment, And slowly, wonderfully, the storm passed.
Don't get me wrong (are you listening, Universe?), I wouldn't recommend suffering our way into joy as the main route to happiness. But if you have to suffer, you might as well sing.
About the painting - black gesso'd wood panel with an initial rough and wonky drawing made with Posca paint pens. Layers of acrylic and acrylic mixed with gesso. Blue painters tape to mask sections and create borders (later removed, of course). Layers of paper-toweled paint for Diana's hair, then mini-paint pen squiggles. Her clothes are collaged gelli plate printed paper, torn and attached with matte medium. The bird? Well, he kind of drew himself while I was out for coffee. Either that or the cats were into the paint again.