Christmas is coming and our goose is pretty thin. I'm having more awkward moments from my last post, regarding our finances, then from all the others about my mental health. My social experiment results are in, discussing finances is the new taboo. Where we used to say, "don't talk about religion or politics" it seems now we might say, "let's, please, not talk about money"!
As usual I break with taboo tradition, I used to love talking about religion and politics to piss people off but I can make a shift. Before moving on to the new I'll just say that I am fiercely Liberal and religiously abstinent. I have become open and closed to all religions and particularly irritated by religious zealots who believe that it is their job to change everyone. I believe we are all the same. Connected, in fact, by something greater than the limitations of religions conjured in the minds of men. Religion creates nothing but war. War between men on the street and nations on the globe. You can't imagine how monumental it is for me to write this down publicly. Most of the important people in my life are evangelical Christians. I have been surrounded by Christians since conscious memory allows. I'm aware that publishing this post will result in controversy but at 43 it's time for me to embrace my own truth. In no way do I mean to shift anyone else off their own truth and my hope is that this won't provoke a messiah response (you know, like, Please don't try to save or fix me!!!!)
moving on- I have to admit that I often feel, "why me" about being broke. I think I was meant to be a comfortably well off person. I've always had trouble working in a traditional job yet had inherited a painfully strong work ethic. I have chosen physically taxing jobs; eg. hairdressing and retail sales/customer service, yet have a very week constitution. Recently, along with my diagnosis after a long and difficult depressive episode I tearfully accepted that I will probably never be able to work again. It was a process that I discussed, maybe still discussing, with my psychiatrist. She is compassionate and adamant at the same time. It is her professional opinion that if I go back to the work force I will get sick, for me getting sick again could be a terminal situation (speaking of awkward topics).
As hard as it is to make ends meet right now I am most fortunate to be in a relationship with Dave taking care of the earning part of life. Blah, blah, blah. I can't believe I just had that thought. Being completely honest, it sucks to raise kids on one meager income!!!
O.K. so, I'm channeling all my efforts into being an artist, a painter, and I wanted to believe that the universe would reward me for being a part of creation. Sometimes it works. I paint and God sends people to buy and it feels confirmed that all the years of practice and all the years of failing at life are worth something. Then, there are times like this- recession and the failure moves into my cells and sounds like "quit, you suck". I put that last statement into quotations because, years ago I had a show and put out a guest book. every page had praise except one..... it said "quit you suck". Why is it that those 3 words are emblazoned on my brain as the only one truth of my art? Partly because I can't get this financial thing figured out. Do you think if I had representation, if collectors were falling over themselves to get my work, if I was making a steady income I would feel differently about my worth?
This is starting to read like a pity party. I want to be clear that I believe making art full time is a much higher road than all the other things I've been paid to do. I choose this life everyday and it chooses me. It just sure would be nice to make some money!
I'm looking forward to mine and my two colleague's show on November 27 & 28. We have distributed 400 printed and countless digital invitations.
The three of us could probably agree that we prefer being at our proverbial easels than we do in the spotlight, that's what makes us artists in the first place.
This honest commentary won't be getting me any dinner invitations.... I'm laughing as I think of it. I'm somewhat proud of this social ineptness.