Long Time Coming



I just got home from the 7th grade trip to Mount St Helen’s. A four day excursion where everyday was hot, everyday was filled with activity, there was no down time, and by day four my body was so very very done. I found myself crying uncontrollably. emotionally spent, exhausted. In pain, numb, gone, done. And it was there like a light for everyone to see.

It is like a ghost in my veins, pulsing my blood, sending it towards boiling. MS is like a thief, swift and invisible taking from me the senses I had just a moment ago. I wake up and my wits are gone. I wake up and my friends are gone. I wake up and I am gone.

In my place is some one who can not control their mouth, their emotions, their legs, their thoughts, their senses. These are things that people usually CAN control. I don’t know which hurts more right now, the fact that my muscles are spasming, that my bones ache, and my skin is numb OR the fact that the entire seventh grade faculty knows I am sick. I feel as though I have burdened them with this knowledge.

Somehow I need to learn to let it go, and accept that I can not hide forever.

I have however realized a few others things:

- I need to stop wasting valuable energy on what others think, on trying to control situations around me that I can’t control. I need that energy for my creative pursuits.

- I need to stop wasting valuable energy in worrying about the art world, I believe galleries are dying, I don’t care about most traditional venues. I no longer care about my resume. I don’t even care about my website. Which I need to take down or change, or something of the such..

- I have a billion teaching ideas I want to work on.

- I have a billion art ideas I want to work on.

- I want to write more.

- I want to sew, and grow a dye garden, fix up my house.

I spent 5 years focusing on grad school where I needed to build my resume, show, show, show, pay attention to my audience, get my work out there…. at the end I find very little fulfillment in it all. It does not make me happy. If nothing else it creates an unhealthy, stressed out version of me, who gains weight, works too hard, doesn’t sleep, and gets sick. Who wants to live in that?

I have spent the last year getting a new job, now buying a new house, making the decision to pursue adoption, and formulating whole new ways of teaching middle school art.

This year I think it should be time to try and set down some truths. Seek balance, pay attention to my friends. I need to take care of myself. Do the things that make me fulfilled and living into my greatest strengths. So here are the goals for the next year:

1) Set up my studio at my new house.

2) Research and plant a dye garden.

3) Regularly write.

4) Figure out a healthy diet with all my new allergies.

5) Create a space of meditation and inspiration…. I don’t know what that means but I need to do it.

6) Work on my relationship with God.

7) Sew, Sculpt, Paint, Draw, Build.

These are the things I know. And I need to live into them. I am in great hopes that this year….. Soon to be my 35th year (come next month)…… will be one of transformation into a person who cares more about what I think of me and less about what others think of me.