Self Portrait Number One

The other morning, I discovered that the sun coming in through the dining room window casts perfect light to go shadow dancing. I did what any healthy person would do, I stripped and grabbed the camera.

Later that night, I showed Andy my silhouettes. “Which one is best for Project 365?”

“You can’t put those online.”
“Why?”
“Because it’s obvious you’re naked.”
“So? It’s a shadow.”
“So, you’re naked.”
“What’s wrong with being naked?”
“Just — don’t — whatever you want to do.”
“I won’t. Out of respect for you. I won’t.”
“Thank you.”

Today, though, I wrote in my journal . . .

  • answered some email
  • colored with crayons
  • ate cereal on the deck
  • read a few pages of Dagoberto Gilb’s Woodcuts of Women
  • picked up eight fallen mandevilla blossoms (crimson)
  • opened some snail mail
  • shredded a few unsolicited credit card offers
  • drew a mandala
  • put on Salvage by Another Fine Day (skipping over the cover of “Scarborough Fair” because, well, it’s Scarborough Fair)
  • lay on my back and sobbed
  • wrote in my journal some more
  • turned to the bookshelf to find Adobe Photoshop: Classroom in a Book but came across Carol Lloyd’s Creating a Life Worth Living first . . .

and before I knew it, ninety more minutes passed while I made the collage pictured above. It could be called Crayons for Cleavage, but that’s a little silly, isn’t it?

This is true.

I had just tacked David Byrne’s “Buck Naked” video on to this piece and was sitting here having my usual pre-posting second thoughts.

Today’s Moment of Doubt included looking at that space between my large shadow thighs wondering how Andy would feel about me, yet again, baring too much publicly. I turned to Facebook to relax for a minute and this was the top update (from my friend, Angel; thanks darling):

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” — Steve Jobs

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