Frida missed the glorious red, white, and blue fireworks that night--not that she cared. As a communist sympathizer and Mexican nationalist, Frida was disturbed by the gulf between rich and poor in the United States. There were many aspects of the United States that she enjoyed, but on the Fourth of July while holed up in a hospital in this industrial capital, waving the flag in the name of freedom seemed far removed from her personal turmoil. Diego and Lucienne, on the other hand, did go to a Fourth of July parade, but their minds kept meandering back to the sight of a vulnerable-looking Frida lying in a large hospital bed.
Although Frida had nothing to celebrate on this American holiday, a few days into her hospital stay, her creative juices began to percolate. Picking up a pad of paper, Frida began to draw what couldn't be translated into words. In one drawing, Frida's sitting up with her tresses pulled back in a hair net. She has a blank stare on her face as if she is lost in thought or, maybe more accurately, without any thoughts at all. It's hard to believe that this lifeless Frida in the drawing will end up creating one of her most famous paintings within the weeks to come. But the creative process is a mystery.
So today as I enjoy hanging out with my friends and family, my mind will also meander back to Frida in that Detroit hospital bed, but instead of fretting over her well-being, I'll celebrate the transformative power of creativity.
© Celia S. Stahr 2015