I skipped to Days 12 & 17 of my Inktober 2017 projects because they were more complete than Days 4 & 9. In fact, Day 4 needed extensive work before it could even be colored.
For Day 12, I chose to move the light source to slightly behind the character. It was quite a depressing prompt for the day (Shattered). While I could have drawn broken glass or ceramics, this seemed more appropriate.
The shadows are blue to emphasize the body language and unseen trauma this character has suffered. The lighting behind her visually represents opportunities to escape from it, but she’s so absorbed by the shadows, that she cannot or does not want to see it. A shattered soul is much harder to draw than broken household goods.
I typically do not discuss my feelings stemming from traumatic experiences. When trust can vanish in an instant, it’s difficult to show someone your true self. Remaining in the dark becomes easier than reaching for the light.
However, I will share how 9/11 affected my life. I was corresponding with my now ex-husband while he was away at boot camp, and I was already enlisted in the Navy’s Delayed Entry Program. The fear of that time drove me into that marriage.
When you’re in the Navy, they try to keep dual-service members co-located. Typically, one service member is on shore, while the other is on a ship, but in the same location. It’s done this way to provide stability for their families.
The thought of being alone in an uncertain time drove me into an unhealthy relationship. While it was not physically abusive, the emotional and mental abuse affected my job and ability to process reality. It is why I chose an early discharge.
It took a long time to reclaim my true self, but I’m closer than ever. Seasonal Affective Disorder still gets me down from time to time, but that is under control with a trusty lamp* and vitamin D.
For some anxiety and depression are constant and overwhelming. For this reason, I want to link the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline where they have a telephone hotline and online chat. Call 1-800-273-8255 if you or a loved one needs help.
Also available on the website is educational material for suicide prevention. In my experience, those about to commit suicide appear to be getting better or happy and distributed their most cherished possessions. The signs were there, but no one recognized them.
So, stay vigilant and know you are not alone.
Previous Inktober Post: Day 3
*Amazon Affiliate Link to the lamp I use.