As you may or may not know, my medical retirement from the Army is what led me down the path to finding clay. I was retired in July 2011 and took my first pottery class in October the same year. This was before I began having neuropathy and weakness in my legs and could throw on the wheel. I LOVED it! Having my hands in clay provided more therapeutic relief for me both physiologically and emotionally than any counselor/shrink had. Fast forward 5.5 years, and the same still holds true. I can’t throw anymore, but I hand build….and I sculpt. Sculpting is my true calling/passion….and my therapy.
The last 2 weeks have been rough. We found out my grandmother was in the hospital with double lung pneumonia, CHF, and COPD, 12 hours after they transferred her to hospice care, she passed away on 19 March. My hubby and I drove out to Iowa with one of my little sisters for the funeral, and back in less than a week. We got back and my husband is sick with a viral upper respiratory and sinus infection.
Not to mention some personal health issues and life decisions the hubby and I have been dealing with – that we’re not quite ready to make public yet. Needless to say…I’ve been an emotional mess. The day after a doctors appointment, I actually had a counseling appoint and it didn’t do shit to help with my own peace of mind / emotional distress.
How Clay has Helped
Before clay, I would have found myself laying bed, depressed as hell, crying all the time, and taking my sweet ass time coping with all of what’s transpired. Clay has allowed me a healthy and productive way to work through many of these emotions in a better – and often quicker – way. There are books that have been written, classes that are taught, and new professions created daily based on the premise of art therapy. Many people still look at “art therapy” or “art AS therapy” as a lesser form of therapy or not a successful healing modality. I am here to tell you that is not the case. It is very successful and preferable than any other form of treatment for me personally.