Just Put Yourself Out There

So these past four months have been a little difficult for me health wise.  I have been taking a lot of steroids.  I have been pretty much homebound with my only outings being the local emergency rooms and dr. appts.  

We have gone to two funerals in the past three weeks and at each, we ran into old friends we hadn't seen in a few years.  Comments were made about how I looked 'so different' or ' oh my, I didn't recognize you."  OUCH....One friend, upon hearing I had been sick, pointed and even said.
"prednisone cheeks, how ugly."

I felt like she had slapped me and I know that sounds trite.  I usually am the first one to not care but I have been looking at me in the mirror several times a day and even I can see the real me is NOT there.  The fat cheeks bother me even though I know I am weaning off the dreaded drug.

I came home and told John I did NOT want to go ANYWHERE at all.  NO WHERE you here?
He tells me every day how beautiful I am.  Our dog and cats still love me and when our kids and kidlets call from far away I know they love me too.  But still..........that nagging little ugly voice that gets in our head sometimes....no matter what you do you can't push it entirely out the door and throw the key away.

I kept telling myself....it is not healthy to hole up in the house because you might run  into someone you know........

And then, there in my email came an invitation to take one of those VanGogh/Merlot painting classes at my favorite Nursery a few blocks away.  I usually take some kind of planting/potting class there so this is different.  I don't know how to paint actually.  I do other media.   But I WANT to paint.

I hesitated.......thought ' what about my face'?............WHAT ABOUT IT?  So before I could start arguing with myself I hit reply and accept and paid for it online and it was done in less than two minutes.

I showed up for the class yesterday not knowing what to expect.  There were 19 women and 1 husband.
                            The instructor told us we were painting this picture.   Sure we are.

 She talked  about priming the canvas and outlining where the flowers go. That was easy.

 I found myself starting to relax.  I met lots of new people and not one said anything about my fat cheeks.  We all just painted and laughed a lot with tea and appetizers.

 I learned about blending wet on wet paint and waiting for other paint to dry.  This is acrylics.
This is my final picture.  I spent three hours learning paint techniques I knew nothing about before.
I laughed and talked.  I made new acquaintances.  It was EASY it was FUN.  I got out of my own way and got out of the house.  I Want to paint MORE.


111 LaLa Lane said...

Girl, get yourself out there. I know it's all too easy to be down on yourself, but remember this stage is just a stepping stone to better health. Sometimes it gets worse before getting better. You'll get your cheeks back. In the meantime, have fun and learn new things. Listen to ownself...as in your signature line...You Are Special!

Art and Sand said...

First, I am so mad at that "mean girl" who referred to your prednisone cheeks. BTW- I hate taking prednisone, but sometimes it is the best thing for me when my asthma leads to bronchitis.

Second, good for you for getting out there.

And, just ignore the mean girls.

Art and Sand said...

First, I am so mad at that "mean girl" who referred to your prednisone cheeks. BTW- I hate taking prednisone, but sometimes it is the best thing for me when my asthma leads to bronchitis.

Second, good for you for getting out there.

And, just ignore the mean girls.

Renee said...

Hello! I stopped in for the GYB Party.

Your painting turned out fabulous and I am SO glad you enjoyed yourself.

I do so hope you hear your husband's comments on your beauty. There is such a wonderful feeling to have others that see you for who you are. :)

Hope you are feeling better soon!

-Renee at Living My Dream

Gail @Purple Hues and Me said...

Good for you, CatieAn! This is a new adventure for you and you can only move forward! Continue to do what you want to do . . . it's always fun to learn new things. And your painting is awesome! One of the things I love about blogging is the wonderful people you meet along the way and they haven't a clue as to what you looked like before or after. And the loving family you have at home will always be there for you no matter what!

Sylvia said...

Love your painting, good for you, I would hang it on my wall.

Jo Murray said...

Please DO paint more. You don't need 'friends' who are so negative.

Betsy@My Salvaged Treasures said...

Your painting is absolutely gorgeous! I'm so happy to hear that you took the leap and did something just for you. Shame on anyone who would say something like that! Keep doing what makes you feel good. You're so blessed to have such a wonderful and supportive family.

~JarieLyn~ said...

I can so relate to your post. I've been going through the same thing lately. I look at myself in the mirror and my face is so round that I do not recognize myself. (mine is due to hormones, and lack of exercise and meds) I don't take prednisone often, but I always say, "If I were a drug addict, predisone would be my drug of choice." It's the only thing that makes me feel better when my Rheumatoid arthritis and my fibromyalgia flares up.

Anyhow, I love your painting and I am so glad you got yourself out of the house and did something for your soul. You go girl.

Valerie-Jael said...

This is really beautiful, well done for going out! Valerie

Marrianna said...

Your painting is wonderful. Good for you! I know it's hard when "friends" make comments about our looks or our body that has grown and now looks like my mother's body - before she got so ill and in hospice.

Take care,

Debby said...

I don't understand rude people. I know I would have been hurt as well. I heard a person say that to a friend that has all kinds of serious medical problems. They said something about how much weight she had gained. She laughingly said yes she had because of the steroids. The person didn't say they were sorry and just said something else so rude.
I'm glad that you got out and had a good time. Don't let the rudies do that to you.

creations.1 said...

Your ex friend deserved to be slapped. Those that love will take you just as you are. Your painting is 'WOW!!' - I love it.

Sarah Huizenga said...

Good for you to not over think the outing and just go. Meeting new people was instrumental because they do not know an difference in how you look. And your painting turned out awesome. I hope you go back again.

Butterfly 8)(8 Bungalow said...

You are very brave. I love your choice of color. Hugs.

MartiDIY said...

Your first painting is great! I would love to take a class like that.

Like others said, I am so mad at that mean girl. Mad and surprised that some who knew it was prednisone and therefore knew there was a medical issue, would say that. You may have cheeks you don't like at the moment, but that beats being rude.

kath001 said...

I actually gasped when I read what that person said to you. I do NOT have a poker face, so if they had said it to me, I am sure they would have known how much it hurt...but then people who are clueless enough to say something like that are clueless enough to not comprehend what they have done.

I adore your painting!

Tammy said...

Shame on that woman who made the snarky comment. The son of one of my best friend's had to take cortisone injections for quite some time because he was losing sight in his eyes due to the immuno-deficiency disease they finally diagnosed him with. The first time I saw him after he had been on it a while, I must say, I was definitely shocked. He looked nothing like his formal self. I said nothing, but his mom saw the look in my eyes and started crying. That made me feel really bad. But I would never have said anything negative. I just wasn't able to hide the shock in my eyes. I'm glad you got out ... I would have been right there with you. My drawing/painting skills have gone downhill since Middle School Art :) and since I stopped teaching 8 years ago. I used to draw and doodle all the time. Your painting turned out great. Perhaps it's time to make some new friends. :) Best wishes, Tammy

sandy said...

Good for you for moving out of your comfort zone and just going for it! There are always going to be "rude people" out there so ignore them even though it may not be easy.

I used to paint and am starting again since my kids gave me an easel and paints and brushes for Christmas!

BTW..Your painting is lovely! Can't believe it is your first one!

Quinn said...

That painting is amazing - so vital and colorful! Well done, going ahead with the class despite misgivings.
Some of the meanest things that have ever been said to me came from "friends" or family, which of course gave their words the power to cut very deeply indeed. One must wonder what on earth such people are trying to accomplish with cruelty masked as conversation. I think next time it happens, I will quietly ask!
Thank you for visiting Comptonia on the GYB Party...good luck in the giveaway. I would love to send you some colorful felted stars. I think they would suit you :)

Patty Antle said...

Your painting is lovely. I'm so glad you got out of the house and had some fun doing something new!

Lydia Pudel said...

Oh, reading about this makes me smile, that you overcome your self prescribed house arrest;)
I know how you feel, I`ve been on heavy medication too! For about three years after they diagnosed my illness. And I know how hard it is to go outside when you cant`t even stand yourself in the mirror!
But I do know like you, how good it felt to find something that you love and do that with other people who don`t give a f... about your looks;)
And painting always cheers me up too! ;)
Your painting looks lovely by the way! You should do this more often. ;)
And thank you for the comment on my blog!
Love & hugs

liniecat said...

Id have been thrilled to end up with a painting like that!
Sounds like a fun event : )