Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

Apifera Farm is a registered 501 [c][3]. All images are ©Katherine Dunn.

Tuesday, January 07, 2020

When you are hit with disturbing events

The Goose looks to the sky as a plane flies over this morning
My father always used to say to me, "You are such an optimist."

It's true, in general. I always look at a situation as a learning situation...what am I meant to learn here even if it feels uncomfortable? What is my inside crone telling me? What am I hiding from myself?

I feel the heaviness right now...of the entire world, the universe really. Some of you reading might not be upset at all by the current administration, or the global situation, or the immigrant situation, or the global environmental situation...but I am.

And in the last week I have heard disturbing news about animal friends...a horse of a nearby person I get hay from had someone come into his barn, enter a stall and hack off the mane and tail of his horse, with scissors, taking all the hair with them. I guess it is a thing, people stealing horse hair. Someone out west recently had extremists enter their property and let the llamas out. Another friend is shutting down her horse rescue of ten years due to ten years of online harassment from extreme thinkers [they too came to her farm and let the horses out, all were brought back safely].

It all leaves me feeling sort of vulnerable. I write and share so much online. I enjoy sharing my animals and photos and art. Lately, I have not felt so much like sharing my thoughts that much. I have been doing it for, ten or more years I guess since I started the blog and then Facebook took over everyone's life. Lately I've been feeling much more vulnerable on social media, and when I heard about the horse hair incident...it shook me up.

But then there is the positivity of intention. When I first arrived in Portland, Oregon, before I meant Martyn or before Apifera and I was still illustrating, I felt a shift. The illustration world died after 9/11, or died from what it once was. I wanted to get into animal massage, and paint for galleries and make books somehow. So I entered massage school to become a masseuse thinking in time I could segway into animal therapy, while I still did my art. I went through three grueling semesters, did well, but realized this was not for me. Soon after, Martyn and I married and a year later moved to the farm.

So here I am, 15 years later, giving daily animal massages.

When I was in my teens, I wanted to be a vet. Minnesota has an excellent vet school, and eventually I knew the science aspect was not for me, I don't think that way.

And here I am 15 years later, and in some ways, I am a vet.

I wanted to paint for galleries and I did {but after years of that, grew wary of the gallery gig and do not partake in galleries anymore]. I wanted to write, and I did, and make books and I did.

The point is, intention is a powerful form of energy. I always say my animals understand my intention and you can't hide your intention from an animal. So when faced with fear, or unsettled feelings, I have to remember to ask myself what is my intention...what do I need?

My life has shifted for sure. I still paint, but it is different. It feels like the intention of my painting is different. I said years ago I wanted to work with my animals in therapy for elder people. And here I am doing it on a regular basis.


I am not in my stdio the number of hours I was out West. For the last year I kept thinking, I need to get back to that. But...I haven't. And it is becoming an okay state of affairs for me, and as I was doing barn chores, and taking time to massage old Honey, and some others, I realized, I am doing exactly what I want to be doing, when I want...and I set that intention forth years ago.

Art is my guts or joy or light in paint or in a book. I will always do that. My elder work, my animal work is my intention at this juncture. I'm graced I got here.

Old Sophie this morning, she gets a forehead massage most mornings


Robin said...

I understand I think this word intention. I use it a lot, think about it a lot too. I think it's a very valuable place to ground what i am able to actualize in my life. What I can make manifest. I am deeply concerned and troubled in my heart about what is happening in our country, around the world and climate change.i am so deeply worried about hate, and how this has really become evident as a behavior in some people, depersonalizating others and having hateful actions. I actually had some person on FB verbally accost me because I offered a prayer for Australia in Jesus name...asking where Jesus had been these last few months. I know my own heart. I am a kind person. I wonder if these people would say such things if they met me. Or knew me. I don't know. It's scary and bewildering. I think if I go back to intention it will guide me when I wonder what to do as only one person in this wide world. And like you Katherine, I choose to do good.

Patty said...

Listen to your "gut" and do what you need to feel safe. Thank you for your work.

Lolly said...

Beautiful picture of Old Sophie!

Post a Comment

Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~