I'm always fascinated with how people choose to express themselves--or not. Take the facebook avatars they choose, for instance. Why that photo, that saying, that painting? I long to know the story behind the choice. That kind of thing can tell you a lot about a person. Those are the kinds of things you want to know if you're a writer and you're creating characters. What would be your character's avatar? Why? And do they change them much or keep them the same?
For years my avatar was a selfie I had taken with a regular (not cell phone) camera. I'd taken it at night in front of my desk. But I didn't hear the 'snap' of the camera so I moved it to check if it was okay. This movement resulted in a multitude of lights seeming to stream around my face! I loved the effect. I liked that my face was somewhat hidden and that the photo had energy and that it had happened because of a mistake on my part. Perhaps a subconscious reminder that good things can come from mistakes. And it gave people lots to think about as they debated what the streams were: my windswept hair, creative wires, mesh of some sort?
For over a year now (or is it over two years?) I've kept the same avatar: a red glass heart in front of my hallway window which is etched with frost. Apart from the fact that I like how it looks as a regular size picture or a thumbnail, the picture has significant meaning for me. I took it between Christmas and New Years when I was waiting to go in for a second mammogram after my first one (my first one ever!) showed an irregularity, a lump of some sort. I had been reassured as much as possible by the receptionist that most times these were nothing to worry about. Of course my mind wandered often to that phrase: 'most times.' A poem was born from the experience and the photo. A poem about the frost scratching and etching the way cancer does in a body. Yet, for me, the photo is strikingly beautiful: that blood red, vibrant heart against the fresh white frost. Beyond are bare-boned winter trees.
Frost ferns remind me of my childhood, growing up in a single-paned house through cold winters where a coal fire downstairs and a paraffin heater upstairs did little to warm upstairs bedroom windows.
I bought this particular glass heart at Banyen's Books in Vancouver on my last visit there to see friends. As usual, I stayed with Linda and she indulged me in going to Banyen Books, a place we both love. I fell in love with it as soon as I entered the store. I hung it in my hallway window because I also have a place in my heart for hallway windows and I see it day and night.
I was very very fortunate: the lump in my breast is nothing to worry about. So my avatar reminds me of my luck, but also of how precious life is and how we could all use a little more pure red-hearted love, especially in the middle of a deep freeze.
Welcome! I'm Sue Blott: a writer of all things, a poet at heart, mom, wife, daughter, step-mom, grandma, tea drinker, tai chi-er, mystic, artist, dreamer...and now a blogger! This is my world.