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Thursday, August 30, 2012

Paint Party Friday " Speak up"

Please visit all the wonderful artists at Paint Party Friday!
Acrylic on bead board
 I wrote this post last week, did a few pieces of art that were horrible. This artwork I revamped by  gessoing over an old piece I did a few months back.  I started out by just playing with color. Sadly the place in my kitchen I planned to hang it  is milometers too tight  to fit over the door...rrrr.... Anyway, now that I see in on my blog I know I'm not finished, or happy with it !! So again it will be doctored!! Or gessoed over !!
Digital edit
Do you speak up  against child abuse? I do!  I've been pretty adamant about this subject since my teens,  long before I had a child! I can be known to voice my disdain too!  Or stand up for a child unfairly treated.

My brother was bullied  when he was very young because of a learning disability .  He fought back. It resulted in me being summoned to the principals office during lunch. I'd retrieve him so he could safely hang with me for the rest of the break!! Five years his senior I took him under my wing including him with my friends!!
  Original Acrylic on bead board still a work in progress!
That same little boy had a spanking almost everyday from a very young age, because he was  so called "busy!" I'm not exaggerating either, mom often bragged about it when he got older. Seriously there were only a very few times he really deserved it!!

My spirit had been broken years before, I knew to be good, "not busy!" In fact, when I was three, I spoke up to my mother who often spanked me with a rubber spatula.  She responded by  smacking me.  I was then  warned not to be  "cheeky". Confused, I humbly asked, "What's cheeky?" She smacked me again, ranting "that's cheeky!" Perplexed,  I still never knew the literal meaning or what I'd done wrong.
Doing a digital color edit really helps me to see the color  changes needed to make it more cohesive.
How could she smack her inquisitive three year old?....I never understood how anyone can smack a little one? Many  parents unfairly demean and reprimand their kids with nasty corporal punishment. Do you stand by, or say something?

Mom always wanted dad to back her up. He was of the mind that two giant adults (one Five feet, the other five nine) towering over one little child was never a fair situation. He felt one parent could easily handle a child on their own. As I write this I wonder if he even knew how hard she was on me when he wasn't around.   I do  know he felt she mishandled things when we were teens!
 An even better perspective on color changes needed!!
I often disciplined my child with my eyes, I preferred to correct her bad behavior! Warning  her to "change her attitude!" Thankfully that all worked, but when it didn't, we talked it out! Sometimes I even compromised!! I always let my child know the  expected  behavior! I followed through too, with discipline that withheld a privilege she enjoyed!! I was lucky though, I had a sweet child to start with. Her heart would have broken if I had been too hard on her!
 Found the little Love box to match the peace one, it houses my pencils, brushes, marker and pens!!

Today I heard about a young  adult male who after much acting out, is now,  in serious  legal trouble. I remember this sweet, sweet boy, how his parents demeaned him after he made the most awesome apple pie. Nothing he ever did was good enough. They were mean!  He's never been an integral part of my life, but a huge part of my friends life. I was never impressed by his obnoxious, sarcastic parents. Although they appeared jovial and fun, their behavior had no proper  boundaries, sadly this boy is now the fall guy. It makes my gut  ache for this kid. I have no idea what will happen to his life...

His story takes me back fifty years when I was in grade one. Standing on the stairs in the school ground a little boy put his hands around my neck and choked me as hard as his six year old hands could squeeze. I have no idea what made him finally release.  It was traumatic, I still remember not being able to breath. I was terrified. I hated that boy. He got all D's in school, was in the lowest reading group. In retrospect he had an obvious undetected learning disability, compounded with a mean streak. I avoided him for the next four years attending that elementary school. He was busy. I can still see that little blond boy jetting around in my minds eye!!

Years later my mother did his grandmothers hair, she told mom how severely this boy was beaten and abused by his father!! When the boy was twenty-one he was put in jail, where he hung himself! His name was Teddy Foster! He'd be  fifty six, had he lived!! Too bad no one spoke up for him sooner!!

42 comments:

judie said...

Girl, this post is absolutely wonderful, heartfelt, amazing, honest, beautiful. Such truths you have told and emotions you have brought out, no doubt in each reader that comes by. This post shows what a kind, generous, spirtually advanced, unselfish person you are inside. And yes, I do speak out for child abuse, and for spousal abuse.
Kudos to you. AND your brother!

Tracey Fletcher King said...

I never understand he need to smack... and when i was teaching I taught many kids who were treated so badly... it was heart braking, but gratifying when you run into them all these years later and see that so many have broken the cycle and are leading happy healthy lives... I hang onto those stories...xx

Maria Ontiveros said...

I love your houses, and your powerful message.
Rinda

Sharon Evans said...

Love your use of colour, use of digital does help with choices I know it does for me too. My heart go out to bullied children, I had to deal with one this week and he broke my heart, a normally happy boy, you could see his spirit was broken. If you don't speak out, you are doing nobody any favours,both the bully and bullied.

Anne said...

Great post, thank you for you saying it out loud and sharing those touching faiths!
Love your house-painting! Happy PPF!

Netty said...

Terrific post and it certainly made me think as am very anti abuse of any kind. Loving your projects and the new box is great. Happy PPF and enjoy the weekend, Annette x

WrightStuff said...

What a moving post and so sad too. Those precious lives that held such potential sent on the wrong course through a lack of love and understanding. Thanks for writing this and getting it out there for others to take note of too. If we all do our bit, it can and will make a difference.

Susan said...

Love your neighborhood and your vision for children. So sad so many have to suffer and grow up with bruises that never go away.
Happy PPF and thank you for sharing your story.

Stephanie Mealor Corder said...

Beautiful message and so beautifully rendered in your art. Abuse is such a terrible cycle- it's wonderful to hear about such brave acts by you and others.
Hugs,
Stephanie

Pointy Pix said...

What an amazingly honest and emotive post. I admire you speaking out against something you feel so strongly about and have first hand experience. I'm sorry your brother and you had to go through such harsh treatment from your mum but it's wonderfully refreshing to read that you used your own experience to raise your own child completely differently instead of repeating the patterns learnt as a child yourself which is so often sadly the case.

I love the work in progress of the tall houses - it's so vibrant and reminds me of the beautiful old architecture you see in many European cities.

ArtMuseDog and Carol said...

Lovely creations ~ Wonderful post ~ very powerful ~ former life was psychotherapist ~ so from where you speak ~ some people should NOT be parents ~ glad you have your magical creativity ~ it will take you far ~ lots of healing hugs and happy creating ~ (A Creative Harbor)

Gloria said...

Hello, dear artistic friend. My heart breaks to hear such sad stories, why are we so cruel to each other! I wish we could protect all the sweet little souls that we meet in life. It is good to remember those young people that act badly have probably been mistreated themselves.
Your houses are beautiful in their abundance of design and color.

Faye said...

Your work is beautiful. I love all the color changes. I think your header is awesome.

While it is never right to take advantage of anyone else and bullying is WRONG WRONG WRONG, there is an old native American saying that unless you have walked in someone's shoes, you have no idea how you would behave. Your mother had a hyperactive, uncontrollable child to deal with in an era where there weren't the medical insights and remedies that there are now. My son had anoxia at birth with resulting hyperactivity and mild cerebral palsy. He was teased and bullied all his life at school. He was extremely "busy" and very hard to live with at home. Today he is the kindest, gentlest, sweetest, most devoted son there could be. Some kids turn out ok in spite of being bullied if there is expressed love for them at home.

Carolyn Dube said...

I am sorry your mother did what she did- and glad you were able to guide your little brother. Home should be like your painting- a place of safety and peace.

Magpie said...

I am so sorry for these sad stories...it's wonderful that you have sent out this message though and perhaps someone will benefit from it and stop a cycle of abuse. It's horrible to crush a child's spirit with violence. Some kids are tough and will overcome it, but some never will.

I love your houses and the inspiring words inside! So colorful and happy!

Gloria said...

I really love your colorful houses. You always do a great job. Hope that your life is now filled with nothing but happiness and love.

soulbrush said...

OMG this post is just so emotionally touching. I have been abused myself, and have spent over 40 years in the classroom helping abused kids too. Abuse takes many forms and is on the increase. So, yes-let's damned well speak up people! Happy PPF to you.

Marji {RainCityGirl} said...

Abuse is one of those topics that people tend to shy away from. I'm glad you told your heartfelt story and didn't shy away. The new works are beautiful. Happy PPF

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

Great post. Fun painted signs. HPPF

Alicia C said...

the houses and the sign look so happy and cozy, and is a terrifying juxtaposition to the stories you relate. But that's life!

The only time I remember 'speaking up' or doing anything in favour of a child was once, in China, we were sightseeing, and I noticed a man, a woman, and a 5 year old daughter. The man, angry, randomly and for no good reason I could tell repeatedly smacked the little girl on the legs, there, in front of all of us in public!! I was so angry I turned to the man and spat at him. This may seem weird but I didn't speak Chinese and in China it is a common thing to spit on the ground - but not at someone else! I don't know if he 'got it' but he was def surprised

Lynn Cohen said...

I was with my best friend today who was badly physically and emotionally abused as a child. She has spent 71 years trying to figure out what the child her did to deserve this. And I have spent most of my adult life trying to convience her she did NOTHING to deserve that treatment. Her mother was mentally sick to have treated her child that way, as was yours.
The scars that are left are far deeper than the bruises and cuts on the skin or broken bones. My heart aches for children who are victims of such treatment. I see many adults in my counseling practice who were victims and some who are now perpetrators of adult abuse/harrassment/bullying as a result. It's the rare adult who can make the connection and choose to change their inappropriate behavior. But there are many more I think who grow up and never ever abuse others large or small.

Counseling helps.

Your art all looks great to me, and I will applaud equally anything you decide to do to make it even better in your eyes!

Hugs!!!

HPPF!

Karen Smithey said...

What sad, sad stories...

And the fact that abuse perpetuates itself from generation to generation makes it so difficult to eradicate...

Ayala Art said...

What a beautiful and happy design, thanks for sharing it.
Yes, some people should not be parents.

Laura Moore said...

A really interesting and emotional read that just leaves you wondering about the darker side of human nature's many facets. Thanks for stopping by.

Natasha said...

I can't understand the people who abuse their children, I look at mine and wonder how they do it. My mother was always heavy handed, I am almost the opposite and we muddle through.

Love your houses, lovely messages for life.

denthe said...

Wow, such a contrast between your bright happy paintings and the stories of abuse. I'm sorry to hear about your experiences. It's horrendous the things people can do to eachother, and it's even more so when one is a defenceless young child. I always stood up for kids that were bullied, and I teach my children to do the same. I don't understand people that close their eyes to it. They are (in my opinion) almost as guilty as the offenders.
I am completely in love with your boxes btw ;-) Hugs, denthe

Mary C. Nasser said...

What an important and moving post. I'm so sorry for what you and your brother went through, but am glad you were there for your younger brother, too. It's wonderful you broke the cycle of abuse, too, by being the parent you wanted to be and raising your daughter with respect.

And you know I always love your paintings, too...and your most recent find to match your other trunk!
♥♥♥
Happy PPF!!
Mary
Mixed-Media Map Art

Jez said...

A wonderful, moving post, Giggles. Yes, physical abuse is a terrible thing, and you are right about speaking out about it. In the UK there is a confidential 'hotline' to a children's charity where people can report child abuse, which is a good start. How people can harm little babies makes me so angry and sad.
But apart from physical abuse, there is also psychological abuse, which leaves just as many scars, but where they are not as easily seen.
As you say, a victim doesn't HAVE to repeat the cycle, it is possible to be determined to be the opposite type of person, and yet the cycle seems to go on and on.
As always, I love your artwork and all the colour variations. I think the last one, the blue one is my favourite.

Janet said...

It's always fun seeing the different versions of your paintings. The little houses are so cute and I love the messages you put on them.

You have such a good heart. We need more people in the world like you. Then maybe it would be a much happier place for everyone.

Christine said...

How very sad a life that boy had, wow.

Beautiful art, I like them in all the colours. It takes us to a better place!

Fallingladies said...

I worked in early head start for years going into homes to help teach the parents how to be parents, sometimes it helped, often it didn't change a thing. I try to focus on the few families i helped!
Nice colorful art!

Ginny said...

Working in the school system you see the best of families and the worst. I know most of us did our best to help the children (and parents) that needed us the most. Your kindness for others and animals comes through so loudly. I still picture the man you wrote about last week running for the bus and the driver taking off. Your words are very strong and you are a wonderful advocate for those who need you.

Your paintings are beautiful. I love the first one and your houses and the words on them convey a wonderful message.

PS. I envy how close you live to the ocean. We were close once and enjoyed it but I think I would enjoy it even more now if given the chance.

DMG said...

It is no wonder your art is so gorgeous and full of life. You have one of the most passionate and beautiful hearts of anyone I have ever known. Your words resonate in my soul; I feel as if you have written the stories I know in my life: first, in my own home, then, later two terribly misunderstood young men I knew growing up, and, finally, in my life as a special education teacher. Thank God for people like you with the wisdom and courage to make a difference and change things for children who can not speak up for themselves. Your own lovely daughter is evidence of the kind of mother you were enlightened and brave enough to become, Lisa. XOXO Always!

Victoria said...

Thankyou for sharing your heart with us all and your powerful story..may love and healing always bless your life and those you love! HUgs! Beautiful artwork..gorgeous color-rush..vibrant and magical and full of metaphor..beautiful!
Victoria

Tam Hess said...

What a heavy but insightful post! I feel so helpless to fight against the things that go on in a home to children. It's overwhelming! I wish people had to attend classes or even parenting college to have a child. I love your work so bright and beautiful...thanks for you kind comments on my work! Hugs!

Kristin said...

Oh, that is heartbreaking. I absolutely would speak up - I can't stand to see anyone - especially a little one - hurt. I really does make me sick to think of a parent being anything less than supportive!
I wish they all came from a beautiful home that you have pictured in your wonderful art - full of love and joy! xoxo

Diana Evans said...

oh that does break my heart.....I wish we could do more to help these children....your work and message are a start!!!

scarlett clay said...

Love the colorful and warm house paintings you've done.

My heart hurts to think of all the children who live in homes of abuse...too sad for words.

LilliBean Designs said...

What a amazingly heartbreaking and inspiring post. I love your safe houses - I think every child should be entitled to one.

I am so sorry for your childhood experiences, yet how amazing you are to become the kind and compassionate person you are.

Sadly I think that many of us can relate is some way to your experiences so thank you for sharing your story.

x

Daniele Valois said...

adore those houses!!!

Lindsay Drya said...

These artworks are full of joy! :) Love all the words included.

Jess said...

A very thought provoking post. I feel very strongly about this and as a child myself who had a difficult time, I've done my best to make my own children's lives filled with love and care.
I love your colourful artwork! :)
Jess x x

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