Painting CRPS: A Nurse’s Reflection of the Bible and Its Correlation to CRPS

Alyssa's painting based on Matthew 6:26 reflects her thoughts on CRPSWritten by Alyssa Skillman for the RSDSA blog. Reshared with permission.

Alyssa Skillman, RN, BSN had the wonderful opportunity to create a canvas and acrylic painting for the Boston Scientific Neuromodulation headquarters in California. They have a program that allows their patients with implanted devices to create artwork and send it in to be hung at the corporate office. Alyssa stated, “My rep knew I like to paint so she was excited to get me into the program. The company sent me the painting supplies and guidelines (for consistency purposes). This is what I created and the meaning behind it.”

Thank you for the opportunity to share my artwork. I hope you will take a moment to read what this painting represents and what it means to me.

I based this painting on the Bible verse Matthew 6:26, that says “Look at the bird of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” This verse means a lot to me, because it reminds me to fully trust in God. Living with CRPS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome), it is easy to feel anxious about the future.  This verse reminds me that the Lord cares for me, knows my every need, and will provide.

The trees represent each season of the year: spring, summer, fall, and winter. They also represent the seasons of life. This symbolizes that no matter what season we are going through in life, whether good times or hard times, it reminds us that the Lord is always with us in every season life brings.

The birds in the painting are a representation of the birds mentioned in Matthew 6:26. However, notice that all of the birds are the same color except for one. One bird is orange, while the rest are black.  The orange bird represents a person with CRPS. This signifies how CRPS is an invisible illness, and how patients like me often blend in with everyone else even though we are different.  Even though you cannot see our pain, we try our best every day to fly right along next to the other birds.

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