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Old 03-25-2012, 05:18 PM
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ArtsyLynda ArtsyLynda is offline
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Back in the saddle again - in more ways than one!

Last November, I had barely started riding again after my horse's 4 month illness last summer when I pulled a muscle severely in my lower back - I believe they called it the "piriform" muscle - to me it was a "glute." Anyway, I could barely walk, needed help to get out of a chair or the bed, and certainly couldn't ride my horse or sculpt for two long, pain-filled months. So off my horses went to our daughter's to be trained and taken care of because I couldn't do it (they're still there).

In December, my gall bladder was removed (it was full of stones - luckily, they all stayed in place so I never had any pain from it!). In late January, my deviated septum was repaired. Yesterday was the two month "anniversary" of that surgery which means it was the day I was allowed to ride my horse again! I've been working out at the Y trying to get back in shape after so long out of the saddle, but I'm a long way from being "riding fit." But I'm working on it.

The reason I'm posting this here is because I've not only been "handicapped" by illness (both mine and my horse's), surgery, etc., but I haven't been able to sculpt much. I have tried to drag myself out to the studio to work, but couldn't manage it. I'd get out there, look around and throw my hands up in the air because I just didn't have the heart to do the work.

I played in water-based clay for a while in my painting studio, rather than my sculpting studio (water-based clay and plastilene just don't get along, so I never get them near each other). That was fun for a little while, but frustrating too in many ways, mostly because I'm not used to it and it frustrates me. I have one finished piece and three unfinished pieces waiting for me to do something with them.

Then yesterday, I rode Ricos (my horse) and had such a wonderful time. Frustrating too, though, because I have so far to go before I'll be back to where I was as a rider, but still, I'm back in the saddle! HUZZAH!

I got home from riding and went to the studio, got out a working surface, plastilene and tools, cranked up the Il Divo and went to town! I was singing along with the music and having FUN for the first time in AGES!!! Then I got all weepy because I was having fun for the first time in so long. Finally, I realized WHY I was having such fun. Somewhere deep inside, I'd been afraid I'd never be able to ride again, with all my health issues as well as my horse's (he could've died from the disease he had last summer - the fact that he's sound is a miracle). Apparently riding is a lot more closely tied to my being able to sculpt than I thought!

So now I've sculpted for two days, Il Divo, Andrea Boccelli and Enya all keeping me company while this lovely Arabian/Welsh cross mare emerges from the clay. She's still too far in the "ugly" stage to show, but I see promise in how she looks. And I'm having FUN sculpting for the first time in . . . close to a year, honestly, with the health issues my horse and I have had.

I dunno if your work is closely tied to something else in your life, but yesterday certainly was a revelation to me.

Back in the saddle again . . .
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Old 03-25-2012, 09:29 PM
sculpturedolls sculpturedolls is offline
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Re: Back in the saddle again - in more ways than one!

Ah, that is a wonderful post! That is an amazing feeling you had and to break down and cry, what a relief, to know you can ride, your horse is okay, and then to know to be back in the saddle by sculpting what you love in the medium you love (oil based clay). I can just see it now and feel it, you singing and so happy.

That's the pure joy I was talking about after 11 months of scraping and sanding on the enlargement and then getting to create new things finally in clay instead of plasterlike substance. I was nuts to do it but to far in it financially and in labor to quit. So now when I play, it's extra sweet!

I'm so happy you are enjoying yourself after all this time and can't wait to see that horse sculpt!
Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, fill your life with love,scatter sunshine, forget self, think of others. -Norman Vincent Peale

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Old 03-26-2012, 10:21 AM
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ArtsyLynda ArtsyLynda is offline
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Re: Back in the saddle again - in more ways than one!

Yeah, I don't know that I could've spent 11 months scraping and sanding that enlargement like you did! Then again, if I HAD to, I would, but that's soul-killing work, it really is. I'm glad you have finished and that job is behind you!

That horse is in the "uglies" right now, but I can see the beauty that's there to carve out. Just have to spend more time on it. I was gonna send a pic to her owner yesterday, but it really was just too ugly to send, LOL. Hopefully after today's work, I can send her something. You'd think she'd commissioned me instead of me being the one who asked if I could sculpt her horse, LOL.
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