The Lows

“Dreams at first seem impossible, then seem improbable,and finally when we commit ourselves, become inevitable”
Mahatma Gandhi

It all started with a conversation among friends and the enormous encouragement of one very special friend. With Leo's help, the first posting on Tòti's blog appeared in August 2013. The years have passed rapidly and, as I have mentioned so often, the unexpected gifts have been enormous. To date, slightly more than 6000 views have been registered on this blog. Tòti Bleu began as an impossible dream and in those few years the dream has become a reality. A lovely horse now greets me several times a day in the pasture. She is strong and pulls Tòti easily. She appeared in our life without searching and we love her! With her help we have actually travelled a short distance in Tòti. I feel showered with blessings!


So, why am I now despairing that it will never be completed? Doubt and fear are terrorising me. I wonder if this feeling of hopelessness is a part of any long project when one becomes drained of energy. Is this the trick that our mind plays on us when we attempt to do something risky. I have often experienced the critical voice in my head when I pick up a paintbrush and stare at a blank canvas. I know this negative voice that haunts me when I try to capture a feeling on canvas. I have learned to battle with it and win. In the past weeks I have felt defeated. I have lost faith. I feel like running away from it all!

I don't like to be negative and I hate to complain. But…if you are reading this blog and you are considering a project or a change in your life that will tumble you into the realm of uncertainty, perhaps you are experiencing something similar to my present feelings. The lows exist, don't they, and we must keep going. There is no running away. How do we go beyond the self doubt and fear?

One of the problems for me is that we are not able to continue working in the winter. Not progressing creates an uneasiness in me. My old friend, impatience, tortures me again. I can't imagine where the money will come from in the spring to buy materials, paint, supplies, etc. But, these are foolish concerns. It is easy for my mind to find reasons to torture me, to make me lose faith. When I look at it carefully, it is simply the negative part of my mind taking control because I am tired.



I'm finally resting. We have left home for a few weeks. A wonderful friend is taking care of our life and we are tucked into a cozy cottage surrounded by olive trees, millions of olive trees, each one an interesting personality. I wrap up warm and sit among them with my pencil and paper. Drawing these twisted and gnarled beings brings a quiet to my mind. Slowly that negative voice beomes a distant whisper on the wind.

If any one of you would like to share with me your experiences, please do. I would love to know who is reading my words, following our struggles and perhaps living something similar.


Inspiring words build my energy.

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action. And because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware directly to the urges that activate you. Keep the channel OPEN.”

Martha Graham



About Suzanne

American living in France. Artist and lover of nature, gardening, all living beings. Married to the love of my life, mother of two wonderful daughters and grandmother.
This entry was posted in Art, Community, Comtois horse, Gypsy wagon/Roulotte construction technique, Horse drawn vehicles, Lifestyle, Small living spaces, Travel, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to The Lows

  1. Ann Marquis says:

    Suzanne, I have found that when I get tired, I get rather lost and negative about my creativity. I know then that I need to step back, rest, and just wait to see what comes. Winter is a wonderful time for you to rest just let your creativity bubble.

  2. Again, you speak such simple truth so beautifully. I find that we push ourselves so hard and have to force ourselves to take a day off. Yesterday I began what I hope will be a weekly habit…I did not turn my computer on. Instead we went on a long bike ride, visited the library and a close friend who broke his leg. Then chatted with neighbors on the road coming home. It felt so good to not be rushing. is Monday! Feeling energized to begin my week. Thank you for being so faithful to this blog. I look forward to it every month!

  3. Suzanne says:

    Thank you for your lovely comment. We miss you and I am determined to spend some time with both of you very soon. Linda, are you painting? I hope so! alors, très bientôt j’espère

  4. says:

    Hello Suzanne and Mark

    So happy to know that you are able to take a break away from the short winter days of the black mountain. I look forward to every post,with anticipation.

    A freshness of thought and sincerity imbues everthing you both do which is why life is not always sunshine and energy. It is the contrasts which make our joys so poignant and our gray days so difficult.

    We try and fill our winter slow times with little projects, but often feel we achieve nothing. I love that quote of Picasso’s “Man cannot be a sorceror 24hrs a day, how would he live?” Sometimes we need to accept that it’s ok to slow down and just be, and to dream a little.

    Take care

    Linda, Simon, spike,mojo and our chickens

    Envoyé de mon ASUS

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