11 Comments
Jul 14, 2020Liked by Katie Hawkins-Gaar

When I saw the image on your newsletter this morning it brought tears to my eyes.

I certainly resonate with Everything is NOT ok right now.

And I am going to give myself permission to feel that fully.

A side story that goes with your theme, I used to carry around little stickers that said 'Everything will be OK' about 3 years ago and leave them stuck all over the place for people to find. I loved doing it, thinking its time to take it up again..

To reply to your question about art and how it's helped me to find meaning. Just last week I took part in something called Flow Painting that a South African friend of mine who runs them online via zoom from Seattle. It was 2 sessions, which ran over 7 hours, of silently painting, no music, just some check in's and trying our best to get the head and its judgements out of the way. It's the first time I took part in anything like this and I absolutely loved it. It challenged me, pushed me, opened me up and I was delighted and surprised by the outcome. I went into a meditative space and it was hugely therapeutic to me on a number of levels. www.inflowproject.com

"The intention of flow is to help people get calm, stay connected to themselves and live in a state of flow, so that they can fill up from the inside to love themselves more and love others better, and give out to the world from a wholehearted place of fullness, because the world needs more love"

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Flow painting sounds wonderful! I'm so glad you got to experience that. And the mural struck me in the same way when I first saw it. Seeing that message presented in such a bold way jolted me—like, oh right, things are definitely not normal or acceptable right now.

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Jul 14, 2020Liked by Katie Hawkins-Gaar

Hi Katie, thanks for this week's newsletter - I seem to waiver back and forth with this one as well. I think the past few months has definitely brought out the best in so many people, but it is also showing up the worst and social media seems to amplify that. I'm the editor of a community magazine in West Dunbartonshire, Scotland and over the past three months we've been publishing 'mini mags' with a mix of useful information/resources, creativity and positive stories about people/orgs going above and beyond to help our community. Not all of the content is specific to our local area and I think you might enjoy some of the poems in the May & June issues shared by local residents a link to the free downloads is www.clydesider.org/publications. We also print 2,000 copies which local community partners are distributing along with emergency food aid and care packages. I'm not trying to use this as a plug for the magazine by the way - just thought the poems capture both the fear and hope really well.

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Jul 14, 2020Liked by Katie Hawkins-Gaar

What a wonderful example of creativity in spreading joy and comfort. I also think it's special that it's a print production, too. There's something special, especially right now, about holding the words and photographs and art that people at making in response to this. Certainly, digital is helpful and further-reaching, but I think that's a resource your community must be so grateful for right now.

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Jul 14, 2020Liked by Katie Hawkins-Gaar

Thanks Rebecca, we do get a lot of positive feedback from it - particularly the print issues - and putting it together helps me because we seem to become a bit of a magnet for positivity and creativity. Then when I see the news/social media I sometimes ask myself, are we painting a false picture of hope but have come to the conclusion that both the positive and the negative are realities, they are just starker than usual right now.

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I love this, Amanda! Capturing the fear *and* hope is so crucial right now. Also, I am absolutely tickled to have a reader in Scotland! Thank you for chiming in! xo

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Jul 14, 2020Liked by Katie Hawkins-Gaar

Thank you for this message. I’ve been struggling with heavy depression recently. Seeing “Everything is not OK” IS hope for the depressed because it tells us we’re not alone. We’re not the only ones who feel hopeless and that itself ignites a tiny flame of hope. I don’t feel OK and that’s OK. I guess that means your art of writing has been uplifting... and “Diva” by Beyoncé. ;)

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Jul 14, 2020Liked by Katie Hawkins-Gaar

This is such a great observation... Feeling seen. And validated.

Thanks for that, Sarah... THIS is what I needed to read today!

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Sweet Sarah, I am so sorry to hear that you've been struggling. You are certainly not alone! This time is so hard for so many of us. Please take care of that beautiful brain of yours. xo

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Hi! I love your newsletter. Your feelings echo many of my own. Since we all need some levity right now, one of the most fun-just-for-fun pieces of art I've ever seen was a bra ball, at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. I took my daughter (now 18) there when she was just about 10-12 and it opened her eyes to what art could look like. It was fun, sent a message and generally rocked our world. (I have photos should you need/want them.)

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Thanks for the kind words, Meredith! I just looked up the bra ball, and I love that you introduced your daughter to art like that at a young age. What a cool mom! xo

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