Fear/Trust Multi-form Collaboration #3

4 Nov

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Creatives Making A Difference

‘Supporting Mental Health’

FEAR/TRUST Collaboration

Welcome to the third collaboration in an eight week, fortnightly engagement with the emotions of fear and trust.  For this particular collaboration we have paired four artists and four poets together. The artists have taken up the theme of fear, and the poets, in response, are engaging  with the theme of trust. In so doing we’re attempting to artistically and accessibly engage with the dynamics between the two emotions – the clashes and the spectrum between the two contrasting feelings. The poets and artists have been exchanging  ideas over a number of weeks and what you’ll be seeing as the weeks roll by is the diverse expression of that exchange.
 It’s our intention that these collaborations will form an online resource which will  potentially bring comfort, provide an innovative  means to engage with difficult feelings, and ultimately to provide access to information about mental health in a stimulating manner. The idea is that we will also eventually group these collaborations together into exhibitions and installations to further promote public awareness and engagement with these issues. Your feedback on this project would be very much welcomed.

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This week’s collaboration features

 Mat JimDog (Artist) and Tom Murphy (Poet)

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I Fear Becoming What I Fear

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I fear becoming what I fear

Endure 

by Tom Murphy

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Endure 5

Please do click on the poem to enlarge

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You can find out more about Mat and Tom below:

Mat JimDog  

There are four key elements from my childhood that define my life and it’s course. A strange relationship with my parents that was, and is, never neglectful but not loving. We exist alongside each other almost like strangers with no emotional attachment. As a young boy starved of somebody telling me they loved me it left me vulnerable. The man who filled the void was in every sense the manipulative, secretive, grooming paedophile. From the age of eight till twelve he owned me, abused and left me utterly confused about sex, love and who I was. I read research recently that linked childhood diabetes with trauma so it seems unsurprising that aged eleven I was found to be a type 1 diabetic with absolutely no family history of this. When the abuse came to a sudden stop, as the family moved to a different part of the country, I was so bereft that I searched for more and picked up men in the local area until one day a violent sexual encounter and beating scared me so much at nearly fourteen I retreated inwards. I went to school and then avoided everything else.

The next ten years were a roller coaster ride of getting somewhere, then crashing out. I then found myself on a teaching course and discovered I was good at it. I met my wife, somebody who told me they loved me and actually meant it. I had a few good years but depression and diabetes are not a good mix and the consequences of poor self care began to cause me problems. The past was always too much of a burden and I was constantly questioning myself. I had a severe episode in 2003 that left me unable to carry on teaching but the warning signs were not really heeded by the medical professional in terms of diabetic care or mental health. By 2005 I was a real mess and attempted suicide, my diabetic care so bad that I was admitted to hospital in a coma with a blood sugar so high it was a record at their A&E to be so high and still living.

In hospital my wife brought me pencils and a pad. At that moment, having never drawn for myself or attempted any kind of art beyond school, I found a voice. A way to communicate to others. I found I can draw how I am feeling and communicate the problems in this way. More importantly I found I could make sense to myself the stuff in my head. Talking about it did nothing. But the act of committing to paper made make sense to me.

I still struggle daily with my mental health, I suffer very serious consequences from the thirty odd years of poor diabetic care. Now, however I can cope. I have this thing called being creative that lights my way and has given me hope. I have been lucky to survive, and it is through my painting and helping others who suffer through creative activity, that I prosper.

https://www.facebook.com/JimDogArt

https://twitter.com/jimdogart

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Tom Murphy:

https://twitter.com/sandcave

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Please do comeback for the final  Fear/Trust collaboration in this series on Tuesday 9th November.

Thank you for your interest.

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