Tag Archives: acceptance

Jeans for a Curvaceous Body, No More Pinching

Which mold are you cramming yourself into, created in the thought book 2014 with markers.
Which mold are you cramming yourself into? Created in the thought book 2014 with markers, by Marie D. Tiger.

I’ve done this a thousand times. Fit myself into a pair of jeans that hug my legs but leave the rest of me desperately crying out for space or at least a bit of stretch. Finding a high enough waist band to lovingly envelope my curves has been a challenge I haven’t taken time for. So I’ve settled to being pinched, cramped and tied up in discomfort, for the benefit of long looking legs.

Molding myself according to expectations of others is a similar experience. Although it may seem easier, the pain of pushing myself into a default template is ongoing. And just like my muffin top is visible, no matter the kind of sack I wear for a blouse, nobody is fooled by me squeezing myself into the cast of normal/perfect/whatever.

Search for perfection, water color in the thought book 2013, by MDT.
Search for perfection, water color in the thought book 2013, by MDT.

And why is it so scary? I don’t know about you, but for me it is frightening to connect with that part of me that flows over, that needs, that reacts in intense and unpredictable ways, the places that need compassion, acceptance, time. To not cram it into yet another corset, tight belt or behind the mask of a smile.

But to listen. To experience. To see what is.

This week, I’m starting with my body. I bought a pair of jeans with a wide, high waist. Comfy and soft. At the same time I’m letting my feelings roll, jump, hide, run, dig tunnels, whatever. There’s space here, both for a soft belly and whatever sort of feelings that life awakens.

Is there a template in your life that you’ve outgrown and/or are ready to bust out of? If you would surround yourself with tender care and deep acceptance, what would your next step be?





Creativity Rant

You form your life, thoughtbook 2013, by MDT.
You form your life, thoughtbook 2013, by MDT.

I was talking to someone earlier this year and that discussion awoke strong feelings. The discussion was about whether brokenness or inner shit can keep us from being creative. Here is a rant I subsequently wrote in the middle of the night:
Creativity is the power to make things happen in a way that is both unique and useful.

There are people who think we should learn all the rules before we can be creative and think outside the box. I always thought that was such bullshit. We already have an inbuilt system to create, by being unique in our core. Why not instead just listen to yourself as well as you’re able to do right now, follow your impulses and create from where you are with what you have now? Start somewhere! Start now.

The amount of inner shit
that I was harboring, when we started going out with the Engineer on the sky blue Bandit motorcycle he had bought, was definitely epic. But here we are, ridiculously traditional, married with children. The shitload of fear I harbored when I filled in the business form to officially start my business, Crealife, somewhere in 2005 was big enough to fill the Baltic Sea.

The shit. Does. Not. Matter. It’s our willingness to face it, talk to it, shine our light into it, that matters. It’s the courage to say, I’m here, I will create this today. Tomorrow it will be better. That matters.

I don’t buy the thought that there is a whole lot of inner or outer crap between ourselves and creativity. I don’t believe that we need to be completely and utterly healed before we can create. It takes one insight and one insight only – realizing you are creative. That is where it all starts. Creating is difficult for everyone, except when it isn’t. Everyone feels fear, fights resistance, encounters bubbles of feelings that aren’t comfy, faces the unknown.

It takes saying: I’m creative. And after that you can, I can, we can, they can create from whatever is true right now. It won’t be perfect. But what growing thing is ever perfect?

The present is our point of power. That is where creativity happens. [that’s also where healing happens, by the way] It’s where everything happens.

I don’t believe our past, diagnosis, or any kind of inner shit, any kind of outer authority can keep us separated from our ability to create. It’s not possible. But we are free to believe that they can. We are free to believe there is not a creative cell in our bodies, we are free to limit ourselves in any way we choose to.

Or, we can accept the situation we are in right now and create from there. Creating builds momentum & movement and opens new doors.

Each choice we make, each choice we do not make, creates our lives. Every word we say, every breath we take brings something to the world that wasn’t there before. We can’t not create. If you’re here on the planet, you are creating.

The power is yours. How are you going to use it?

Taboo Moments

Repost to illustrate the poem, Vulnerability, thought book 2013, by MDT
Repost to illustrate the poem, Vulnerability, thought book 2013, by MDT

Silence about the torment
Silencing the regular losing of myself,
that I have come to expect & endure.
But no numbing this experience.
No drugs, thank you.
It is what it is. I am who I am.
I’m drinking it all in. The agony without reason.
The faceless bliss. Everything in between.
My life. My experience. Thank you.

If it frightens you. That is. Fine.
It terrifies me. How identity can melt into
suffering. No catastrophies. No disasters. Just pain.
I do not believe in normal.
Do not sign on the dotted line of appropriate inner
directions and reactions.

To thine own self be true, is a loaded statement. What
it means is a personal journey.

There is too much life here.
Too much.
Do you know how even a beautiful sound [especially a beautiful sound],
too loud, hurts the ears? So it is sometimes,
with myself and life.
Too much, so loud. That I hurt all over. Lest I keep firm boundaries
around my tender core.
Pad each stimulating event with expanses of
solitude, music, space, physical movement, freedom, love.
Otherwise you find me writhing in pain. Beauty turned excruciate.
Everyday details turned into an elaborate torture of overwhelm.

I don’t understand this woman I call myself.
But dutifully, passionately, I scribe and paint her experiences
With the hope of someday
making sense of all this
happening in the inner landscape of me/her.
It is like understanding the weather.
Why is it raining today?
Why is the sun scorching?

So in the midst of my scribing, I try to remember, how to breathe.
At times like this morning by the traffic lights, breathing
is close to impossible.
Solar plexus moving only by force, doggedly, the air
wanting to hide
at the base of my throat, shy to move.

At times the breath is like a slow tide
moving leisurely.
I am the scribe.
Remembering to experience
the storms, the lulls, peace.
Remembering I feel everything. I own nothing.

From Freak to Beloved

You sweep away the ants
eating away at my skin
One at a time, when needs be
Inviting me into
our bubble of intimacy
From the heights of my rushing steed
of excitement

But it is me who is bucking
and throwing my head
Not wanting to stop

You ride my tempestuous
dig me out of the ant stack
awaken my connection
hold me when I weep with the enormity
of life and all its overwhelming sensations.
And throughout it all I feel
beautiful to you.
The journey from being the freak
and becoming the Loved One
has been a miracle to me.
I so love you.
Even when you draw me down from my high
so I can feel your skin again.


To Join or Not to Join?

To Join or Not to Join? Thought book 2013, by  MDT.
To Join or Not to Join? Thought book 2013, by MDT.

I went to see my mentor yesterday. I hadn’t done my homework, which was to fill out the application for an Artist’s Guild and send it. Crap! So my next assignment was to paint about joining and then fill out the application.

There is room in the world for all kinds of imaginations, for all kinds of artists, for all kinds of art. I’m learning to sense that so fully that it becomes real. In the meantime, T. and Fant are mustering up their courage to go talk to all the impressive artists at the Artist’s Guild and I am filling out applications. Wish me luck. Yikes!

Only Human


This week the artist in me has been forced to accept the human limitations built of motherhood, illness and 24 hours in a day. So here is a quick drawing of my sick son watching TV. Back to blogging on Monday again.

Acceptance Makes Change Graceful

In Order to Change Something, First You Accept Where You Are. 2013, MDT.
In Order to Change Something, First You Accept Where You Are. 2013, MDT.

I love paradoxes. They open the mind to experience and allow for movement between seeming opposites. This is one of them. When starting a change, ground yourself deeply by accepting exactly where you are. It is much easier to make small, tangible choices toward what you want to achieve, when you accept the present point where you’re starting from. Growth and development are inevitable, when you keep moving, doing something to change, every day.

Fallen Angel

The bravest person I know is
the one who kept the doors to imagination
Letting me play with real oats and scratchy hay
for the play horses.
In the living room.
Driving dad crazy.

She stood up
defended the right to imagine, play, create
time and time again.
Read the stories that kept
the inner forests from petrifying
into rational mind memories.
Ignited our sense of language.

She came with me and sis, in wordlessness,
to the Elven Ball, wrote notes of love
that welcomed me home
in the night.
Baked cookies at six am,
so we could all wake up to the scent of them.

Now lost, pain ridden, confused for sure
she goes through violence, booze and homelessness
in her quest for freedom.
She chooses and stands behind those choices
revels in the experiences;
of her world, quite outside any kind
of support from official line consciousness.

I cry in the Heart of Helsinki
after our Christmas phone call.
Because still you are opening new doors for me. Mother.
Acceptance of your right to choose
what you want.
No matter what I think.
I don’t know what’s best for you.
I just. Love. You.
And that is plenty.


Enough now. Peace.

Through Fire and Brimstone, 2011, water color by Marie D. Tiger
Through Fire and Brimstone, 2011, water color by Marie D. Tiger

There is honor
in taking a deep breath
instead of lashing out.

There is glory in saying
“This ends here,”
in being willing
to acknowledge, feel
and release
fear, perfectionism, jealousy, anger, judgement,
envy, sorrow, pain, despair, frustration,
confusion, uncertainty, contempt, doubt, shame, guilt,
powerlessness, victimhood, righteousness, hatred,
humiliation, domination, sadism, abuse.
instead of transferring it –
casting it onto others,
in never-ending circles
of hurt.

There is valor
in acceptance of self,
in facing the “shadowy pit of evil”
You know where it lies.
As do I.

It is the place inside
that does not want to be seen.
The secrets, tabus, suffocated emotions, broken promises,
weaknesses, mistakes, the dark dreams and deeds
that we turn away from,
hope to keep hidden.

The greatest courage lies
in opening the heart
in the midst of fear
to compassion,
with you, with me, with all of us.
Let us know peace.

There is peace
in sitting with the shadow within,
because violence
begins inside each man and woman
before any bruise is smacked into existence,
before blood is ever shed,
before the bullets, the guns, the terror.
Just listen behind the closed doors of
at the coffee tables in offices,
during the fund raisers,
in the cars,
on the facebook chats,
everywhere we can’t help but
let out our blame. Fixate on the outside.
On what others are doing wrong.

I call for radical action!
Let us turn away from blaming the other,
whoever, what ever.
Take my hand, as we turn inside
howl our defiance, refuse to cower
before our own beliefs, emotions, feelings,
experiences, selves.
Make use of our aggression and with a triumphant
raise our weapons –
of awareness, choice, self-trust, acceptance, expression, art making, inquiry, safe space, boundaries, clarity, breathing, appreciation
– and charge into who we really are.
Again, again and again.
As long as it takes.
Widening the inner sphere of peace
until the center
Let us know peace.
Let us be peace.
Moment by moment, step by step.

What Do You Create, When Nobody Is Looking?

2013_bluehandsYesterday I went to a graduation party. Now I’m sitting here on my chair, inhaling water, listening to Tenacious D and feeling like burnt focaccia. The title of this blog has been on my mind for days. I’ve been distracting myself from making art lately. [Poor imagination, she’s thrown me such beautiful ideas, like tempting a willful child who doesn’t want to eat.] There have been delightful distractions like vintage clothes made according to my measurements and creating settings for gemstones. There’s been less comfy distractions like thinking I have to , finally justify my existence with something like a… well, real job, you know? (Wave to Daddy.)

How many long baths can you take, watching the Vampire Diaries? Well a whole lot, truthfully, but I digress. There’s a funny thing about art, it is born inside with a desire to be expressed. Funky, whimsical, ambitious, deep, tormented, no matter the form, it wants to have a voice, a choreography, a canvas, an audience. What if nobody is looking? Does it diminish the life of art? Does it take away the passion to create, to make visible that which is so real in the imagination, to give form to something that is just an idea, a hint of something grand?

What do we create when nobody is looking? When there is no deadline, no opinions, no critics. Just your soul and you. Whether it is about putting the green winter overalls on your small children under five in the tiny foyer, getting news that someone copied your article on living the charmed life or painting about meeting your soul for the first time, knowing maybe three people will see it and love it – what are you creating when nobody is looking? How does it fit your values, are you allowing yourself to express the real you?

I was on my way to the Arlanda airport recently. I was feeling disconnected, overwhelmed and alone in a big world. The taxi driver, Pierre, asked me what I had thought about Stockholm. Somehow we started talking about life and living fully. About feeling the passion of being sixteen again. About knowing the good and the bad inside, knowing that excact spot where evil is born and then choosing good. Suddenly I felt connected again. There was love between me and this person I just met. We parted ways but that connection has stayed with me for weeks.

The really valuable insights come in the moments when nobody else is looking. Creating happens in a spot inside of us where we are worthy because we exist, because we in that moment let go of everything and let the new open up inside of us, leading us into the now moment as we are, with the good, with the bad, with everything we are.