For me it was an escape, a way to express my feelings and made me feel less alone.
I think for most people its hard to trust, let people in and tell your deepest feelings to but when your whole network of people gets shattered (like most care experience people) its even harder.
From poetry to painting, I used this as a way to express my feelings, feelings I didn't trust anyone else to know. You've already created your shield to protect you, why let someone in so they can crush you some more? Creativity would never.
There's a deep sadness and sense of loss that comes from such a turbulent upbringing but creativity has, and always will, provide me with happiness and fulfilment. It helps ease the pain.
With all the instabilities of growing up, creativity was the one thing I could rely on to understand me, listen to me and enabled me to be myself. Everyone will have their own medicine but this is mine.
Obviously I need a balance of many other things - friends, exercise and nature being big ones - but there is no doubt that art was a crutch to maintain the balance.
For myself and many other care experienced people, self-worth is a struggle but creativity gives me that purpose and makes me believe in myself. I'm still on the journey though, with creativity by my side.
You experience creativity differently if you've used it as a tool to get you through trauma. Whether it's music, poetry, fashion, art, theatre… if you've shared that trauma it will hit you differently. We are a network of survivors who can build together.
I absorb creativity to get me through; I express myself through creativity and aim to help heal others through my creative work. Whether that’s through concept-based fashion collections or through workshops, I want to help heal them broken hearts in any way I can.
I've always been an introvert and never really told anyone, even close friends, that I've been in care. I didn't want to be seen as different, didn't want sympathy or extra questions.
However, through doing these workshops with 42nd Street I have found the power in my journey and understanding how being open about this can help me connect more with my network of people, so we can build together.
You can find more of Jessie's work here
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