Good Morning! It is a beautiful morning, sunny and bright and I feel great. I have allot to do and I am happy about it.
So why in the middle of my morning chores, am I compelled to stop what I am doing (did not even make coffee yet) and sit here and write about melancholy?
It is about NOT knowing the answer to this, that I am writing!
Melancholy might be called "functional depression" It is a sadness that you can hide, you can walk around with it, somethings for years. In truth, you cannot hide it and you cannot function well. The Greeks built Saturnine Gardens, to acknowledge it and let the soul rest from it. I heard a definition of depression was "being stopped", but you do not stop with melancholy, you just carry it around with you.
I have always been tuned in to OTHER people's emotional states. I had a mother that could do this and trained me, UGH! It is a good skill for an artist, but rough on the "day to day". Sometimes I do not need or want to know what people are feeling, in a restaurant or grocery.
I have had to re-train myself, to be able to press the mute button. When I was younger, I did it with drink. That works, but the cost is high and the effect is short. I have found my solution through mediation that is built into martial arts training. I have learned to use that mental mute button, but that does NOT stop all that emotional info from pouring in anyway.
Sometimes I am overwhelmed. The studio is where it all comes out, I often see the studio as a battlefield, a place where it all gets processed. It can make my studio a highly charged and scary place. I do not think it matters if I am painting in an expressive way or a still life with a Lemon. I acknowledge this and would not have it any other way!