Welcome back, readers!
It’s been a long time and the world has undergone a relentless pandemic. As libraries are closed, businesses are down, restaurants can only provide takeout and Life As We Knew It (a great book series by the way, by Susan Beth Pfeffer) is entering a confusing and anxiety provoking “new normal” we need our structure, SMART goals, safety plans, treatment toolkits and a breath of positivity and unfathomable creativity and relaxation skills now more than ever.
So, finally, after such a long break, this chapter is going to focus back into our imaginations where the world is safe, predictable and easygoing.
To kick off today’s creativity: I’d like you to think of your home or apartment’s or other living quarter’s front door as it exists here and now, today.
Picture it clearly and as vividly as possible.
Hell, if you need to, go take a quick swing outside and look at it.
But really, really look at it.
See it not just for what it is but what it could be.
Notice the way it stands. Recognize that it is a barrier protecting your inner world from your outer world. Deep inside, beyond the door, exists peace, serenity, loyalty, and inspiration. Realize, too, that that and more exists within your soul. Your home, your bedroom, your head space is a reflection of you. When someone else comes by, they’ll see your things and also see the reflection of what makes you, well, you!
From colors you like, books you’ve read (or not read yet, as in my case!), how organized or disorganized it may be, what you’ve dreamt of, what you’d like to add or place anew, fresh and never worn.
Your home now and especially in your imagination is real, functional and yours.
It is an extension of you–of all of you.
And all of it lies beyond this door.
So what do you notice?
What do you see that others see? That others don’t?
What does the door that separates your world from everybody else’s really look like?
The color? The shade?
The handle or knob?
The screen? Glass door?
The chips in paint?
Now that you see it–really, truly see it–I want you to record your observations somewhere in a journal or notebook or piece of scrap paper.
Because right now, right now we’re going to look beyond this door and instead explore, brainstorm and represent all the ways your Recovery Home door appears.
Let me walk you through this:
My home’s front door is a dark green coloration with a common round doorknob that’s a rusty gold color and two small square windows at the very top. It is flanked on both sides with dark green panels, a white trim connecting the individual parts and door itself, and three vertically rectangular windows stacked atop each other on the flanks. There’s a gold door knocker on the door itself with a doorbell ringer on the home’s structure. On the interior side of the door, everything is white.
Get as detailed as you can with this exercise, too. There can never be too much detail! The more real and vivid it becomes, while also your being able to physically refer back to it, will ignite the way you’ll be able to create and dream of your imagined front door.
Speaking of imagined front doors–what does my Recovery Home door look like?
I always imagined from the very beginning of a door dark green in nature with a custom painted pastel yellow, pink and green fleur-de-lis (shaped like an iris) design in the middle.
Over time, I added a message to the interior of the door, the phrase:
“Your life is worth living” in fancy cursive script.
Now, in the last year, I’ve changed the door’s coloring to a slightly dark teal instead of green. The middle portion of the symbol is pastel yellow, the outer flaps are pastel green and the middle band across the symbol is pastel pink. I’ve adapted to this just this year when I was trying to brainstorm and come up with some cover images for this column itself (they weren’t used, but they were still excellent efforts!).
Of course there are other portions to this design that I haven’t fully uncovered yet, myself. For instance, windows and where they may be placed, no screen door and no glass door, the type of knob I’d have, the interior color, the type of font, the colors of that font and so on.
Additionally, if you find yourself struggling to come up with a front door that fits right with you and what you want to welcome the world to you and your hopes, dreams and homes, fear not, because I have some ideas for how you can explore, expand and dream until the night fades away!
1. Look at interior design, home design, or architecture based books, magazines or, relatedly,
2. Look at these topics online with a quick Google search!
From what I’ve tinkered into following thus far, there are also these Twitter accounts that may interest you: Interiorporns, InteriorDesign, designmindfull, biophilicdsign, and interiorpixs.
Specific magazines I have copies of may also include: Raymour and Flanigan Furniture, Better Home and Gardens, House Beautiful, Good Housekeeping, Family Circle and New England Home.
Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive so if you have your own ideas or blogs or places you find inspiration; leave them down below in a comment!!
3. While adhering to proper social distancing among these COVID-19 times, you could also try and drive around in the countryside or walk around your local neighborhood to eyeball some interesting structural designs and home improvement ideas. You can look around and take note by admiring other people’s houses and whether they have fancy color pairings, how their front doors sparkle, and how what they offer and what they’ve chosen to feature in their homes and yards ignite sights and pleasures for your eyes to behold.
Watch what sticks out most to you–whether that’s the arch of the windows, the hidden doors, the balconies, the porches, the wells, gardens, garages, etc.
Take notes of each of these things and spend some time people watching, too. Begin to enlighten yourself and expand your perspective by thinking of what you could add or would add to your own homes and imaginary vessels.
Overall, I hope that you’ve enjoyed this chapter and it’s given you some ideas for your home today and the home you have locked away in your imagination.
Let me know what you think!
Stay safe, take care, and be well. Much love and light to you all!
“Hi, my name is Raquel Lyons, and I’m a twenty-six year old college graduate having completed a Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology. I love creating artwork in various juggling fashions, including: photography, creative writing (particularly Loki centered Avengers fan fiction), graphic design, filming, beaded bracelets, water coloring, painting, drawing, coloring and scrapbooking. You can find me over at my main blog under the name “RecoverytoWellness.” I hope you enjoy my articles from a lived experience perspective from mental health conditions and recovery focused work and feel free to leave me a comment anywhere on social media, I’d love to chat with you! Stay safe!! xxx”