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Flat


I painted this last week although haven’t been feeling very inspired, albeit in any sense of the word.

I’ve put it down to the weather which has been so awful; grey, wet, cold and windy. So I have barely left the house which I guess is not unusual for me but I am no longer hunkered down with my oxygen and morphine.

I’ve been totally lacking in energy which as Martin helpfully reminded me, I have just had a lung transplant so it’s probably part of the process of getting over the surgery. I have an appointment this Friday with the reflexologist who I was seeing before at the palliative care place. I can’t wait to have that lovely relaxation. I’m sure it will be good for my battered body.

Although I don’t feel so knocked about now; I remember in hospital saying I felt as though I’d been run over by an articulated lorry and thrown off a cliff. I still know all about it when I move awkwardly or do something like pull a drawer open.

Today I have art though and it was bright enough yesterday to go down the lane where I found some nice autumnal oak leaves that I’ll try painting. I think I am not so much bored with flowers as lacking in real flowers.

There are the dahlias still going strong but the pom-poms are best in the garden rather than on paper (and when you pick them there are the horrifying earwigs). I still have some big blousy white ones but nothing to make me want to paint them.

I’ve been looking at paintings by Milton Avery who did beautiful watercolours (as well as oils):

I’ve also just finished The Vanishing Man by Laura Cumming about a lost Velasquez painting which reads like a novel and conjures up his genius so that I want to race off to the Prado to look.

But I can’t go anywhere for 12 months after my operation as that is when the risk of rejection is greatest. Apart from Madrid I would love to go to Portugal to see the surfers who ride those huge waves although both places are best visited in the winter, Madrid because of the heat and Portugal because of the waves.

This week I have had a cold and cough which I got from who knows where but fortunately not too bad. The symptoms can be a sign of rejection but Papworth reassured me that it seems just a cold.

I may still have it next week too as one of the transplant nurses said if I get a cold it would likely last about 3 weeks. I will be at Papworth on Thursday so will at least get looked over and have the usual xrays and blood tests. A major gain this week was being told I could stop my dreadful fungicidal nebulizer as the results of my bronchoscopy were clear. That is a 3 times a day for twenty minutes of breathing in a nasty yellow vapour that I am now free from!

You can either look at other artists for inspiration or become demoralised by comparing yourself which is not helpful! There are so many good artists out there that when I'm feeling flat and lacking in energy it's easy to feel inadequate. Best to turn to a good book. I also just finished Idaho by Emily Ruskovich which is absorbing. In a nutshell it's about a woman who kills one of her children (but so much more nuanced than just that) and I so wanted to understand why; the book keeps you in suspense but not in a thriller sort of way. I understood in the end I think as it doesn't spell it out. One for the book group maybe.

I hope to have some painted autumn leaves for next week.

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