Veteran’s Day — Emotional Art

My husband is a veteran. He still deals with his memories – good and bad – of his time in service. If you have served or know of someone who served, you know what I mean.

It becomes a seal on who you are.

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My husband JP is on the armored personnel carrier (APC) behind the gun.

I, personally, have no idea of the depth of horror that our service members may go through during their time of duty. I don’t understand what it’s like to endure that kind of shock – I just know that it IS a shock and one that reverberates for a lifetime.

There are no words.

In this lifetime, there are sometimes no words for our pain or our sense of camaraderie or honor. My uncle served in Vietnam, and it changed him. I never heard him talk about it, and my cousins said that he rarely did. He received a Purple Heart.

As artists, learning how to communicate the emotions that we have is critical. Art is emotional. Art can also ease pain from some of what we endure in life. I am not an Art Therapist, but one of the things that I love about art is the emotional connection that we can have when something reaches out to us.

What if you want to look into professional art therapy?

Amy Hahn, an Art Therapist in Eau Claire, WI said “It’s a better “bang for your buck” than just talking about therapy because art creation activates the entire brain, like fireworks going off in your head.” (See full article at Chippewa Valley Family.org)

Whether you are a veteran or not, each of us has moments and memories. Each of us has pain and happiness and things that fascinate us. Last night my husband was watching a TV show where they showed a group of military helicopters approaching through the sky – and it triggered some good memories for him. Visceral.

Collect art that moves you like that. Paint art that moves you like that. Delve into your own experience…and perhaps find a bit of healing or rejoicing.

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My husband with his 2 grandmas.

If you are a veteran, thank you for your service. Your pain cannot be wiped away. The sense of unity cannot be translated completely. Sometimes, though, a tiny piece of it can be shared, and in the sharing something new can grow.

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