It was a long semester, many 14 hour days on campus, nights of drawing and researching. Now it has come to a close and while I may still be taking a few classes I am no longer a full time student. I am glad that I did it, to know if I could. But I never again want to be a full time student at a traditional institution ever again (though I have dreams of this program).
Since my semester ended last week I’ve been catching up on life. Spending a day a school with Alder trying to figure out the root of his dislike of school, not that I didn’t already know. There has been some holiday shopping at lots of local stores while attempting to stay in budget. Mostly there has been lots of family time and quite a few hours peppered in between with a good book or some paint and paper. I even managed to find time for a morning at the steam baths.
While I still have so much to do in all my projects as I am moving from transition to doing I am also happy that I can once again be putting things in this space. You can’t imagine how many scraps of paper sit on my desk with blog posts that never got written. I know there are only a few of you who peek here any more but I am happy to be back.
Who can resist a bookstore that fills an old theater.
Time spend in a favorite spot with friends.
A new desk arrangement.
Dr. Who landing just by one of our favorite pubs (did I say that I got to see the 50th in 3D)
Another moment stolen at The Weathervane Cafe
A trip to the mountains.
Which wore someone out.
And a wonderful man who drove the pass through the 8″of snow from the day before.
My life right now is a series of tumbling events, things that need to get done, and rhythms that I hold to. There are a lot of things I’m letting slide, things that I hope I can pick up again once this semester is over. That is what it is. I accept it and move on. Right now is so full of immediate needs that there isn’t time for day dreaming, planning yes, but not the sort of thoughts that go where they will. Because I can see the end to this I am okay with it.
Lately I’ve found my sustenance through my friends, drawing on envelopes, and reading. But I crave hot water, just a few hours at the Steam Baths or a Hot Springs, I think it’s time for me to sit down with my calendar and figure out where I can carve a few hours for myself. I am learning how to bring sustenance to my existence without large swathes of time to do so, to accept that reviving myself can’t be contingent to having lots of time to do it in.
Even this post was begun 10 days ago and is only finished right now.
Someday work happens in small moments while the rest of life happens. I stole a few minutes in the middle of an epic list of errands to sit and put down some ideas I had been going over in my head all day. I find that I get a lot of “soft” work done while walking, so when I can spare the time I walk for my errands. I’m not one to put on head phones when I am walking, I like to hear the sounds of the world around me. I love how what I see relates to the noises of this city. All of it inspires me and focuses my mind.
There are moments when I feel doubt, where I can still hear my monkey mind shouting at me that I should just stop or give up. But it is in the distance and I can block the chants out with music, to do lists, and deep breaths. What I didn’t realize was how doing rather than planning feels so different. Two months into this new way of being everything is continuing to grow. The world is vibrant and I am part of it once again.
Still, until the past few weeks I have been staying reasonably safe. Doing things that I knew I could easily finish. But then an idea began to form, not the sort you just jot down in a journal, but a fully realized one. In some ways it is the project that I have been working towards over the past few years. It has come so naturally to focus my energy on it. Sitting down each day I am finding joy in the writing and drawing that I am doing. As the pieces come together and build on each other I feel stronger and more myself. Sitting down to work I am completely present.
This form of focus has been missing from my life and I never understood how powerful it was, until I returned to it. Now I see how doing something larger, something where my creativity and experience comes together, fills me. I want to honor this with the work I do by respecting it as valuable and taking the time to do it well and thoroughly. All of this is new to me, giving into depth and slowing down. It becomes more than a job, or a project, it is a new way of being.