I’ve been dealing with a skunk for the past couple of months. At first it was just nearby, and I occasionally smelled skunk spray in the middle of the night. Then it sprayed under my house, and the smell was overwhelming. Skunk spray is strong and can be a health hazard for people who are sensitive.
So how do you get a skunk out from under the house? Several people said I should trap and relocate it, but it’s illegal to trap and relocate wild animals in most states. They can’t survive outside of their territory. The wild animals were here before us. We’re intruding on their space, and we need to learn to live with them.
I laid awake every night last week worrying about the skunk. I didn’t want it under the house, but I also didn’t want to hurt it. It brought up feelings of helplessness because I couldn’t find a good solution to this situation.
Maybe you’ve heard the phrase that what you resist persists. It’s been hard, but I’m working on embracing the feelings of helplessness — leaning into them rather than pushing them away.
One of my teachers said that spirit sent this skunk as a messenger to help heal old wounds. Animals bring up a lot of painful emotions for me, and the animal lessons have been particularly strong this past year. What you resist persists! Let the healing begin.
After trying many other methods of getting the skunk to leave, I bought a nontoxic repellent called Skunk Scram. It’s pellets that smell like very strong essential oils. I think the skunk is gone from under the house. I don’t smell skunk anymore, and hopefully no harm has come to it.
I feel bad for the skunk. No one wants a skunk around, and it’s unwelcome anywhere it goes. How sad is that?
All of this skunk drama hasn’t left me much time for art, but I did manage to get a couple of new paintings done that I’ll share with you. These two are from my “Earth Speaks” series, the paintings created using natural earth pigments. I’m really enjoying working with these pigments, and I feel like I’m doing something positive for the environment as well.
Click on the images for more information and to see them in a browser.
“Ancient Mystery,” 36 x 48 inches, natural earth pigments on raw cotton canvas
“Blue Line,” 36 x 48 inches, natural earth pigments and conte crayon on raw cotton canvas
UPDATE: Last night I heard noise at the back of the house. I turned on the outdoor lights, and I saw the skunk for the first time. It’s a very large skunk with thick black fur and two white stripes on either side of its back. It walked right over the barrier of skunk repellent on the ground and dug a huge hole to get under the deck. The skunk saga continues!
How do you embrace difficult emotions? I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts. You can share them with us in the comments section below.
With love and appreciation,