Creative intuitives have a need to express themselves from their hearts. However it is not as easy as it might seem. We can’t just decide we would like to play some music today or paint or dance. Even if we are inspired, it might not work for us because it all depends on how our energy feels today, the energy of the space we are in, the dynamics of the people that we are with and the energy of the season. I know . . by the time you have felt into this lot you are too tired to be expressive anyway!
I run sessions for children and adults who are creative and intuitive. As you might imagine, they are unpredictable! On one occasion I was working with my son and his friend. I planned to do some movement with some techno music but when I started the activity I could see that the boys were finding something ‘too much’ about it – the movement, the music, each other’s energy . . . and I quickly realised it wasn’t working. So I offered painting instead and after a little encouragement the boys accepted this as a good alternative. They decided they wanted to paint a peacock and after a little google research for images, they were away. The energy in the room became calm and focused and we all felt we could breathe again!
Now I am not saying that art is always the answer. It isn’t. Sometimes you can make the art fit your energy – you can paint big and wild or small and contained – but sometimes you can’t paint at all.
I sometimes feel like one of those Mums who thinks they know best for their child and pushes them into a particular direction.
Or . . . do I know best for my child and just won’t give up working away in their best interests?
I think the latter.
We have a 9 year old who is sensitive, empathic, intuitive and creative.
When he was big enough to hold a pencil Luca started to draw. He drew spirals round and round pushing hard into the paper. They had so much energy I could hardly look at them! I don’t think too much into these things – just that he had a lot of expressive energy.
When he could hold a paint brush Luca started to paint. His pictures evolved – first a snail, then a snake, then a train, then a washing machine – all in one picture with a running commentary! Everything was abstract – a friend was a vertical line of a particular colour and and an animal was a horizontal line. I thought this phase was amazing. Luca only painted what he felt – not what he saw.
When he was nearly 5, Luca started school. He was told to colour between the lines and that he shouldn’t have painted his man blue because men aren’t blue This was a sad time for my little expressive.
When he was 7, Luca couldn’t manage the restrictions of school any more so we bought him home. I gave him a paint brush but he didn’t want to paint. But he made little symbolic pictures to show how life had affected him in the last few years. These were his healing pictures.
When he was 8, Luca said it was babyish to paint and it was hard to encourage him to pick up a paint brush. When he did, though, he came alive and went back to his ‘feeling’ way of painting.
When he was 9, Luca decided it was really childish to paint from your feelings. He would only paint what he saw. His last painting was a table with his first attempt at perspective. He got the idea watching ‘The Big Painting Challenge’ on TV. On the table was an MP3 player. The background he left white.
When he was nearly 10, Luca refused to say or hear the words – Art, Music or Dance. I actually had to reverse the words and call them Tra, Cisum and Ecnad! He said these things were just not him and that he preferred animation and programming. I couldn’t encourage him to express his deeper self any more and so I stopped doing so.
Over the next months, Luca became fatigued and said he felt weak and ungrounded. I knew some of this was related to a visual processing condition called Irlens Syndrome but had a hunch that some of it could be that Luca was giving a lot to his projects but not really tanking himself up.
Then one day Luca asked me to do something we used to do together a lot – create a story to music with him. He said he wanted help with his energy and anxieties. We created a story about his toy sheep Tres. She was a garden designer who ended up getting very tired because she gave all she had to design beautiful gardens for other people. It turned out she had never designed a beautiful garden for herself! Luca spoke, rapped and danced to some funky music and told the story. He had a big smile on his face and his heart just seemed to open.
When we had finished though, Luca said that he was never doing that again! When I said it was the way to tank him up and fill his heart, he said “I don’t deserve to be tanked up. I guess I will always be low hearted!”
And so the journey with my mule up the mountain continues . . . !
Why have I told you this story?
It is so easy for children to start to feel that what comes from inside of them isn’t good enough. They think it isn’t as as good as what is already in the world. It is our role as parents to keep helping them to go back to who they are – their personality, their passion, their heart, their voice.
I know it is hard to keep encouraging children to paint and sing and speak and dance. You can feel like you’re trying to lead a mule up a mountain! But we do encourage our children to eat vegetables and get enough sleep and exercise. If we don’t help our children to express themselves it prevents the flow of their life force. Yes, it is good to take in but also we need to pour out.
No matter the climate, the weather or the terrain, nothing is going to stop me leading my mule up the mountain! How about you?
Ah, spring – just as all the leaves are about to burst forth – I always feel my energy is explosive at this time of year. But my energy is for something specific. I can’t seem to cook or play board games or do anything where my energy is focused. I just have to let go!
So today I painted big and painted expressive! I painted what I felt. I saw the flower – a small celandine – but I felt the flower – huge vibrant energy exploding in every direction and blending with all the energy around it.
How many of us feel like the small celandine? It is what we see when we look in the mirror so we must be small. And yet within us all is this huge explosive energy. We know it. We feel it but can we tap into it? Can we release it?
In order to let go of our huge explosive energy we need to feed it. My celandine was growing in good, well watered soil and had been drenched in any sun that came its way. This is why when the time came to open its petals it found it so easy and so natural to show its vibrant beauty.
Luca’s friend came round the other day and I talked to him and Luca about their throat and voice. Both the boys said that sometimes they didn’t want to hear what people were saying or things around them because it seemed to interfere with what was in their own heads.
There is so much noise in today’s world that maybe children are not able to hear themselves any more – their own feelings, tastes, thoughts and opinions. Some are happy to take on other’s thoughts and opinions and have become followers of other people – like celebrities. But others are rebelling and saying “Please be quiet. I want to hear what’s in my own head.”
I asked the boys to paint their throat or their voice and I did a painting too. And an amazing thing happened. We all started off painting our own voice but as the panting developed other people’s voices crept into our pictures. It was as if we all had this revelation that to be a lone voice is lonely and ineffective but to join voices – well, that is power!
‘The Meeting of Sound-waves’by Jacob (Age 7)
‘The Joining of Voices’ by Jennie (Age 47)
‘The Universal Voice’ by Luca (Age 7)
Why not have a go and paint your voice. You may be surprised about what is inside you waiting to be expressed into the world!
Everyone’s feeling about life are different. Some feel things deeply, others less deeply. My son’s friend came round and we sat and chatted about some experiences that meant a lot to us. Then we painted them.
The Adventures of My Toy Lamb, Tray by Luca ( age 7)
The Day a Potter Came to School – Me Making My Pot by Jacob (age 7)
Connecting With the World – My Big Strong Arms by Jennie (age 47)