A couple of days ago (whilst on leave over the Easter break), I was going through what I (and my husband) call an ‘episode’. An episode for me is when I struggle to deal or cope with life and I can not get out of bed, because of overwhelming anxiety and depression. My ‘episodes’ are getting better and don’t occur as frequently or last as long as they used to with time (due to intense on going therapy and utilising other methods of exercising, meditation, journaling). I digress… however after three days of ‘bed rest’, I decided to be a part of the human race and leave my house.
I have lived in Auckland for over 18 years and I have never been to the Auckland Art Gallery! Big mistake! It was windy, rainy overall great weather, my husband decided to take me the gallery. I was really reluctant because:
a) Traffic; b) more traffic concerns; c) parking in the city is never fun.
Despite these concerns I needed human connection, and needed to be a part of. I got ready and we headed to the city. I was still reluctant as I struggle by backing out of novel experiences, because I get overwhelmed with social anxiety. Even though I am aware of the activity and have chosen it! It is still a struggle, anyway I pushed through and went ahead.
New Zealand residents have free admission to the gallery (and up to $20NZD for international adults). One of the free things one can do in Auckland.
I was pleasantly surprised – I had no expectations of enjoying myself, but what a treat. The building is well- designed, modern-looking and very organised. The staff were very friendly and helpful (there are several staff members on each floor. There’s Maori and Polynesian art and history which is fascinating and beautiful. There is a perfect balance between national art that explores New Zealand’s history as well as the wider Pacific community. Much of the exhibition space was featuring works by female artists. Some of these works were protest art.
My absolute favourite (to my surprise as I don’t know much about art) were the Classical Art pieces. They were exquisite, truly a sight to behold. It’s truly amazing sharing space and time with a piece of the past.
There was a ballet rehearsal on one of the floors, people were welcome to record and take pictures. Unfortunately we missed the live show. I spent a great deal looking and admiring the art, for over an hour. The whole experience was totally worth it; and was not a disappointment at all! A great way to spend time – will definitely return!
After the gallery, we decided to take a walk down memory lane – downtown. Decided to try out this new craze, ‘bubble tea’ and watch a movie as the weather continued to rain.
The experience got me thinking. I spend so much time doing the same things; sticking to my safe little bubble – ‘feeling stuck’. When I challenge myself to do something completely foreign – it is always a learning experience. I have to be honest by allowing myself to be vulnerable I allow myself to experience. I found out I actually enjoy art – classical art which is connected to my love of history. By taking small baby steps, I continue to grown and learn a lot about myself and what I am capable of.
I have always thought I need to leave Auckland to experience something new! Sometimes it’s just about opening ourselves up to experiences in our own backyard! Every minute counts!