Good morning! As per usual, I got five hours of sleep last night, ugh. I’m not sure why I’m waking so thoroughly after such a short time, because I definitely begin to feel the effects of not enough sleep come late afternoon and early evening. I always fall asleep during the last episode of Supernatural, which Scott and I have been watching every night (for, possibly, the third time: we’re on season 3… again. It’s one of our fall-back “comfort shows”–along with Buffy, and X-Files).
I am still ‘cooking’ a painting and have been unable to get back to it for two weeks. Not because I’m busy, because I’m not, but because I just haven’t been able to muster the energy, even though it’s a great piece and I’m very happy about it. Every morning I think, “I’ll get to the papier-macheing today (or whatever else is required)” but I don’t. Sometimes that’s because people show up–like Jesse, or Brian, who sometimes spend entire days off hanging out here, which I love, don’t get me wrong–but mostly it’s because of sheer mental inertia.
There are whole entire days when nobody shows up until Scott gets home from work and I still do everything BUT work on my paintings. I’ve lived long enough, and paid enough attention by now, to know that I operate in cycles. I go from having enough energy to having no energy and everything in-between, and can feel myself descending (or ascending) as it happens. I’m learning to grab onto and ride my higher-energy days and allow myself to lie on the couch in a trance on lower-energy ones, assigning moral judgments to neither. I’m developing an “It is what it is” philosophy that’s serving me well.
Not that I don’t try to lift myself up, or stir myself into action when there’s something that needs to be done. I try to stay functioning. But that usually means simply getting dressed, or picking up the big chunks in the house, doing the dishes, throwing something together for dinner: normal, everyday tasks. I don’t often make it to my art, which I consider my true work. I don’t need it for survival, so am not motivated in that way. I’m not a starving artist. Sometimes I wonder if it would be better if I was?
I would either produce a LOT more paintings, books, sculptures and jewelry if I were starving, or–more likely–be working 9-5 in an office somewhere. I’ve done office work. Just kill me now. (Not to say it isn’t valuable, and some people are amazing at it; it just isn’t for me.)
Oh, I don’t know. There are a variety of paths I could take and find happiness in them, but the one I’m on is obviously the one I’ve chosen because it’s the best for me at this time in my life. Why overthink it?
Worrying about this is unnecessarily exhausting because it is inevitable that in a few days, or a week or so, I’ll be back to my former enthusiasm and inspired action. There were entire YEARS where I did nothing but stumble from the bed to the couch and back again. So I’m not complaining. Compared to that, I’m a high-functioning dynamo, watch out world… I say, lying here on the couch in my fluffy robe, typing.
Skimmed through the last little bit of Martin Prechtel’s second book this morning, which I didn’t connect with like I did his first one, Secrets of the Talking Jaguar. I think I may be done with my Guatemalan shaman phase. Speaking of phases of interest… Brian and Jess were both here yesterday. I’d given Brian the atlas, remember? And on our Eastern Oregon trip, Scott and I had picked up a whole passel of kids’ books for Jesse’s coming baby. I shoved the box of them over to Jesse, who eagerly began looking through them.
So there I sat in the corner of the living room in my cushy rocker, between Brian examining and sharing tidbits from his atlas, and Jesse reading Lewis Carroll and Edward Lear nonsense rhymes aloud and exclaiming over illustrations. It was kind of surreal because they were both utterly absorbed in what they were doing, and I was equally interested in both, so I’d ask questions or address what one of them said, only to turn two seconds later to do the same with the other. I don’t remember ever having been so equally divided in one setting before. It was like both watching and playing a ping-pong match at the same time. Thankfully Torie came home from the dentist and broke the spell so my little overtaxed brain didn’t break.
Today I need to answer emails and one snail-mail, which I’ve been terrible about doing lately, and tackle the enormous pile of dishes that has been mounting over the past two days, sigh. There’s an awful lot of grease in there (meaning the dishes, ha). It helps to turn on the little TV while I do them, though sometimes I like to stay in the silence and sing. Other than that, the day is open, and my frame is calling for some papier-mache action. Will I get to it? Won’t I? Pish, it remains to be seen. Ta, all. xo