Sometimes I use my Art to escape and while that can be a good thing most of the time and if you have a relatively normal life – there is absolutely no problem with that at all!
However, I do NOT have a normal life.
When the pressure builds I can generally cope, but since my car accident last April I find myself more and more unable to shoulder all my responsibilities. Coupled with my chronic Perfectionism and you have a wonderful, heady cocktail of anxiety and moodiness! I turn into Mrs Cranky-Pants and neglect all the things I should be more pedantic about.
Finally this month, I decided to take some time out – visit my Naturopath and my GP and order a barrage of testing. My weight is now how it was when I was 9mths pregnant – and that’s not good when you are neither pregnant, nor under 160cm. I was losing all strength and energy and feeling very manic. I know I need to be 7kg lighter but it’s not my diet that’s the issue, so off to have scans and x-rays and blood tests to rule out every possible nasty. That’s my mission next week!
I also made a few huuuge life-saving decisions. Firstly I plucked up the courage to take my 8year old son (who is severely autistic) to have a big blood test. We needed him to be sedated because he is too strong for me now to hold down, he is not a compliant munchkin and can’t be bribed, so sedate him we did. His biochemistry is different to you or I, so I was so fearful that things would go oh-so badly, he would react terribly to the medication and then it would un-do all the sacrifices and hard work I’ve put into his recovery the last 6 years! So you can imagine my hesitation. I did NOT want to go back there, to that dark, isolating world when you first get the diagnosis and your trapped child is tearing your house and your family apart.
But we did the test Monday at the Children’s Hospital Emergency Department, and I’m happy to say it all went well. Initial results show he is doing well – but we all know it’s my dedication to his recovery that deserves the credit here LOL.
I can’t tell you what a relief it is to have it done and have no side effects to worry about. We have a baseline to move forward and that can only be GOOD! My mood is better and I “feel” healthier. My abdomen is smaller today – I only look 6mths pregnant LOL.
So, back to what I love to do and keeps me sane – MY ART!
I have scribbled the last few weeks and loved it but felt frustrated that I couldn’t get studio time – “me” time. It would be nice if everyone worked in compartments. That I could put all my personal issues into a little box and then turn around and be a creative, professional, inspiring genius. I envy those who make time for it all. What I don’t like is comments about how those who drop out of view for a while are considered “has-beens” or “failures”.
Do you recall the days before social media? An artist could create in peace and not have to “be seen” constantly, for fear of the “out-of-sight-out-of-mind” curse, and you just turned up for their twice-yearly exhibitions. (Apologies for the number of inverted commas…..poor writing, I agree!) I feel like I want people to LIKE me too much and have lost sight of actually just doing it – the very thing they LIKEd me for in the first place!
And so I have…..
I’ve realised, as I always have, that being PRODUCTIVE is the magic tonic in my life.
I hope you find your magic tonic but not have to go through a whole year of pain to get there!
7 thoughts on “A.W.O.L. Explained!”
I’m glad that Rainer’s test went well honey. And I hope that your tests go well next week too.
I love you just the way you are my beautiful friend and my life is certainly richer by having you in it
Glad to see you find solace in your art, isn’t it cathartic? Sorry you took my comments on the challenge blog to heart 😦 I too have a special needs child, full time job, am full time mum and have a small business, so contrary to popular belief I understand and was not being critical
Gigi, firstly got to say you are one of my favourite reads and watches. I don’t always write a comment but always carry you in my thoughts. Art and painting I have found is a really personal thing, often we feel the need to share everything to keep in the social media roller coaster that is now a huge part of our day to day life…. but Gigi breathe.
You are a quality operation love, that won’t change even if you never shared another piece of art for another year! Please remember that. Art and ideas often develop like little seeds in the complete chaos that is our lives and you have proved that time and time again. For me it is when it becomes more of a have too than a love too that I become ‘two scoops of grumpy in a huge bowl of bitch’, when you try to juggle everything and everyone and forget what is important….
life is hard and you my dear are the hardest taskmaster, please be kind to yourself Gigi, we will wait….love naomi xxx
I have missed your wonderfully uplifting chat, so I knew something was amiss.
You have been through a lot, you poor dear girl but your smiling face (with your son) shows you’re digging your way out with guts and glory !
Dearest Gi, how tough it is for you when life throws you these curved balls. Rainer is such a beautiful child, and you are such a giving, selfless Mother doing the best you can (which is all anyone can ask) and more in a very unforgiving world. I can’t imagine how difficult it must be for you, Rainer and the rest of your family. Sometimes, unfortunately, we have to hit the bottom before we get that push back to start rising back to the top; it sounds like you might have got the push back. You need to look after you dear Gi, if you don’t do that you can’t look after anyone else. Make sure you have some ‘Gi time’, it is essential. You need to laugh and take some ‘normal’ time and do whatever it is that makes you relax, unwind and feel normal. Remember that while you are a Mother with responsibilities, you are also a person, an individual who has responsibilities for yourself as well.
As someone who has just had their 60th birthday, a little hint if I might – bugger the perfectionism, that won’t make you happy, it will only tie you up in knots and make you unhappy. It is energy sapping and time consuming. Give it up Gi, use your perfectionism time doing things that make you feel happy. Obviously that is your art, which by the way is very impressive. Spend more time on it, and don’t sweat the small stuff. Nobody ever won an award for having the cleanest fridge or the tidiest house.
Love your work Gi, my love and admiration to you.
Always believe that you are awesome. You are such a great thing in so many lives.
Your art is for you, let go of the need to please people with it, then you’ll be free to enjoy it when people genuinely love it. Love the process then let go.
And like I said…you are AWESOME!
I had no idea about this post (for some reason my mailbox did not receive it) but now that I have read it, I feel your angst.
We all need to find something in our lives that takes us away from what is happening every day around us. I work with adults with disabilities and know how draining spending just one day with someone with special needs can be. To live it every minute of every day, it is no wonder that you need your time away. I certainly understand it and admire that you can achieve so much in your own life as well as taking care of the needs of your family.
You never need apologise for your life because it is yours to live.
Like others, I love seeing your work and count it a special privilege to have had the opportunity to do a class with you. I’ve taken what I’ve learned from you and used it to create my own art pieces that are my cartharsis.