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I always find it amazing when my rational brain knows things for fact, an absolute certainty, and still my emotional brain practically sticks its fingers in my ears and goes LALALA I CAN’T HEAR YOU and proceeds to take me on a roller coaster of feelings. This happens more often than I care to admit. Denial is a powerful drug. Thankfully, I seem to be able to snap out of that pit in just a day or so. Mostly. That pit? It is dark, and it is deep. It sucks every last bit of hope out of the world and only gives despair in return. I do not have the words to describe how desolate it feels.

If my cheery beaming positive terrible sorry sarcastic attitude doesn’t convey it, I have no good news to share. Period. (HAH. It’s funny because that’s a pun. Get it?) (This is why I shouldn’t draft posts after midnight.) Friday was a terrible day. Saturday was better because the rational side is finally kicking in. Things can only go up from here, right? If I say that loudly and often enough it must become true. Or so I tell myself.

Thursday’s endeavor to clean up the office and make room for my art easel was largely a success. I still have a lot to do, stuff to find homes for (some of it belongs to the husband, though) and stuff I should probably get rid of but I’m not dodging stuff to get to my computer and my easel has a corner! And I have a drop cloth down to keep charcoal/pastels/possibly paint off the carpet. The joys of renting, right?

I have an odd relationship with art. It’s complicated (understatement of the decade!) but one of my biggest regrets is only ever having the opportunity to take introductory drawing. That is the sum total of my art education. It wasn’t available to me in grade school or high school and pursuing a double bachelor’s left no time for extras. Except for that one class, final semester of my senior year. It was amazing, partly because I allowed myself that time to not stress over failing my capstone course and thus not graduating. Looking back I don’t think I was ever in danger of failing that class. If my classmates passed there was no way I would have failed. I digress.

I loved that class. Sure, we did boring stuff like line studied and draw these five things that are on the table over and over and over but I still enjoyed it. The thing is I haven’t done much of anything since and there is absolutely no reason for it. Sure, my former job ate up a lot of my time and emotional energy (runner up for understatement of the year) but that’s just another excuse. Two years ago I picked up my charcoals and worked on a few pieces but only completed one. I never practiced, never tried any new mediums except for a few sorry, half-hearted attempts at working with acrylic paint that resulted in more unfinished pieces.

Honestly, at this point I have no one to blame but myself. I can change this. I have the time. I have the resources to learn because as my nephew said, all you have to do is type it into youtube and it’s all there! He was talking about Gummi Bears but it’s so very true. I’ve looked back at the work I did in college (yes, I’ve held onto it for five years) and I wonder why I stopped. (Well, there’s the complicated stuff but that’s just more excuses.) The only thing holding me back now is me.

So Saturday morning I set out to replenish my charcoal/pastel paper supply. Instead, thanks to the awesomeness of sales, I now have a set of watercolor pencils and enough watercolor paper to get me started. One thing I’m paranoid of doing is amassing art supplies and never doing anything with them. (See: holding onto my stuff from college for five years.) For one, I don’t want to waste the money. Two, I don’t have the space to keep things I’m not going to use. Three, I wouldn’t be able to deal with the guilt. I’m glad to say that I’ve already opened up my stuff and dabbled with it. It didn’t take me long to realize that I have no idea what I’m doing. But instead of getting frustrated I am OK. I won’t be able to pick this up in a day. I have the whole of the internet as a learning resource.

I am hoping that in the coming weeks and months art will be a helpful form of therapy. I remember how I felt working on the last piece I did. How it felt in college to just drop the stress and draw. I just need to not be afraid to start and be OK with failing miserably At least to start with because I’m horribly out of practice. I’ve heard that practicing drawing will help one strengthen their photography skills so here’s hoping I can accomplish many things. Like so many things, I need to stop letting fear hold me back.

And Dr Who; I won’t get anything done if I keep hitting “next” on Netflix.

Searching for peace

I received some bad news on Tuesday. It’s not exactly horrible news but it certainly wasn’t great. Part of this may be overreaction; I won’t know for a couple of days and maybe not even then. Why am I being so cryptic? There really is no need for it. I’m just having a hard time dealing, which isn’t an exaggeration. Ok. So. On Monday I had some blood work done and Tuesday I got the results. My progesterone levels are about half of what my doctor said would be “good” or what they expected them to be. I’m not going to go in to more detail, partly because I’m not sure of anything at this point. This could still end well but… it’s not very likely. As in nearly impossible.

Hopes. Dashed. I spent most of Tuesday wallowing. I can only describe my feelings as soul crushing despair. Wednesday I tried to haul myself out of it but all I managed to do was make my arm sore. Well, it’s sore because I scrubbed my entire shower (take that, hard water and soap scum!) and my kitchen sink (thing looks hideous no matter what I do because… I actually don’t know why but Bar Keepers Friend is magic!). Today I am marginally better but I feel it’s a fragile thing. I’m a fragile thing. It would take very little for me to become a useless bawling heap again.

That does no one any good, least of all me. I know it’s trite but I am trying to keep a positive attitude, see the “bright side” (hint: there IS no bright side), appreciate the opportunities I have now (nope, isn’t coming close to helping), and blah blah blah. Truth is it sucks. It will continue to suck and there’s only one thing that can change that. Since that one thing isn’t happening soon the only thing left for me to do is suck it up and deal. And try so very hard to not fall into depression.

So far what I’ve come up with as distractions are A) hard core cleaning and organizing our apartment because, well, I’m a horrible housekeeper and it needs to be done and B) working on art, any sort of art. I’ve not been updating the blog (July was super busy and I had nothing compelling to share), I haven’t worked on any photos in ages, and I’ve been wanting to get back to at least trying some more traditional mediums. That ties in to distraction A because I currently have no room to set up my easel or anything. In fact, once I eat (how did it get to be 2:15 and I haven’t eaten anything?) I’m going to attack our “office”, which is really just a room for our computers and TONS OF BOXES WHERE DID THIS CRAP COME FROM.

Now that I’ve gotten that much off my chest, here are some photos of my mama’s day lilies. I was able to wander around a bit after some rain and became quite obsessed with raindrops. Continue reading…

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