Category Archives: Sewing

Dizzying

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I’ve had several break-throughs this past week or so, and it’s almost like I fell into a rabbit hole and came out a different version of myself.

  1. I realized that in response to the structure of my family, I chose, at the age of six, to be the person who would be perfect, and who would make everything okay for everyone. Did you make a decision that hurt my feelings? I won’t tell you, it would make you uncomfortable, it’s okay. Do you have inadequate social skills and monopolize conversations? It’s okay, I will suffer through rather than call you on it. There are a million examples, and I’m in the process of setting myself free. It’s scary but also liberating when say, I’m on the phone with my MIL and she is detailing the various possible locations of the dining table in RVs and I think, “It is not my problem that you are inept at conversation.” OMG IT’S NOT MY PROBLEM. I interrupt the moment she takes a breath, tell her the things that I think are news on our end, tell her that we are thinking of her and that breakfast is ready so I must go. I’m not, ever again, sitting down to a cold meal because someone wanted to tell me how the weather has been everyday this month.
  2. I read this post and saw myself therein. I need to pace myself on a long term basis. This means that my activity level should not spike and bottom out, but remain more constant. I can’t push myself to the edge anymore. At least as much as it is possible–working in theater this over-activity business is kind of “how we do things ’round here.” This is difficult, because it means letting go of the “maybe that was the last flare up” mindset. This is a permanent condition. So easy to write, yet so very difficult to accept.

A result of examining both my people-pleasing at the expense of my own happiness and my tendency to over-activity–both of which are things that hurt rather than help–I did something really out of character. I had a thought, “It would be so cool if I could afford to have an assistant in my studio, even a few hours a week, to do some of the stuff I can’t do, but also stuff I don’t want to do because it takes away from the number of spoons I have to do the things only I can do.” This was followed by the realization that having done away with massage, I am saving nearly $400 a month. I CAN afford to hire an assistant, at $10 an hour, for four or five hours a week. So, I did.

I’m panicking a little now, because this is tremendously new territory for me. My assistant starts Friday, and my goal yesterday was to start a list of what she can do for me. I choked, man. I sat in my messy, chaotic studio and couldn’t figure out what to have her do–because, as I told her when I interviewed her, I am not entirely sure what this will look like. It’s hard to give up control of my creative space in any way, and hard to direct an able-bodied person to do things for me. She completely understood that, and now I am trying to fully understand that, and figure out a list of things for Friday. It’s much harder than it seems, because there’s a lot going on underneath the surface in terms of my own acceptance of my condition and limitations.

I am sure I will make it through, I am sure I am doing the right thing for myself and I know it’s okay to feel like I’m embarking on a trip with no itinerary. We’ll get to the destination we need to get to–we won’t be left floating about the ocean with no sail. Fingers crossed.

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Where Have I Been? Nowhere, Just Here.

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Broken Ankle Update:

No invasive surgery required. Instead, they did a “closed reduction,” meaning they knocked the child out with general and manipulated the bones into place (note: you must be very strong to be an orthopedic surgeon) and put him in a long cast. The “long cast” goes above the knee so that he can’t move the tibia at all. It sucks in terms of mobility since he can’t bend his knee. That cast stays on for three weeks, then a short cast for four weeks, then a boot, then physical therapy.

Vacation Update:

See above. No vacation.

Art Update:

I have decided to pitch an adult coloring book to a publisher, so I’m working like crazy on that and forcing out all insecure thoughts. If I can’t get published that way, I will self-publish. I think I am onto something here, and it’s an exciting prospect.

Sewing Update:

Still sewing, but nothing too interesting right now. I need a good camera so I can actually take professional looking photos of my work instead of crappy photos on my phone or iPad.

EDS Update:

Christ on a cracker, it sucks.

1. Massage has stopped helping. I’ve been trying to avoid voicing this reality, since it means I no longer have anything for managing pain. That’s a really unpleasant place to find oneself. But, for $95 a week I should be feeling relief for at least a few days afterward, and I’m not. Sometimes I feel worse. I have to figure out how to man up and tell my therapist this, since I like her a lot and it’s not her fault but I do have to stop throwing money away.

2. About two weeks ago my left thumb chose to lose about 30% of my pinch and grasp ability. I can’t lift anything of weight (like a plate of dinner) with either hand if the weight is mostly to go to my thumb. I feel like I have silly paddle hands as I try to work around this, and it’s painful. I can’t have my CMC joints fused unless I am ready to quit my job and possibly lose the dexterity I need to sew and draw. Which is sort of the same as saying I have to give up oxygen. So I’m stuck.

3. My shoulders are worse again, and I cannot under any circumstances sleep on my right side. I wake up around 2:00 am every morning because I am in pain, and it can take up to two hours to get back to sleep. Sometimes I can be sitting at the table talking to someone and a third of my brain is occupied with how much it hurts to just deal with the weight of my shoulders hanging off my neck.

4. My back is verily fucked up and hurts all the time. I have two degenerated discs in the lower back (L4 and L5) and what I probably really need is to get a chiropractic adjustment. But, that is problematic for EDS, and so I have mostly given up on it at this point. My last stab at that was my PCP putting my upper rib back in place and it popped right the hell back out within hours, so that was a wash.

5. 80% of the time, or more, I can deal with my level of daily pain. Sometimes, though, it just seems like it is far more than a person should be asked to deal with, and I have a day or days of feeling really angry and frustrated and sad about being in pain every single damn day. Which is why it’s hard to give up massage. This weekend is one of those points where I’ve had it with my body and my discomfort and there’s going to be a pity party. Which is not a party I can even enjoy.

Overall Update:

Ugh, except for art, which is good.

What Time Off?

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I was asked to make a Day of the Dead-themed Victorian walking suit for a show that will spend two years traveling to various museums. For the first time in my artistic life, I have not only failed to submit my piece early, I have missed the initial deadlines. Inspiration showed up late in this case, but I think it was worth it. Initially I made a Victorian-esque skirt from some of my extensive collection of Our Lady of Guadalupe fabrics. Then it all ground to halt. Digging around in a cedar chest filled with -Ray’s things for a class I was teaching on the topic of DIY-clothing (upcycling, transforming, etc) I found a jacket that I had made for her from two vintage blouses that featured an appliqued skull on the back.

In looking at that, and some other things I had made for her, I realized I was ready to let these things out of the silent tomb of the cedar chest. I wanted to transform them, then release the back into the world. I took the tshirt she sent me with the logo of their band, which I designed, and cut the logo out, hand colored it, and hand appliqued it onto the skull jacket:

Victorian Altar Process 1Victorian Altar Process 2Victorian Altar Process 3

Then I appliqued elements from a gorgeous quilter cotton that was full of Mexican folk symbols (and some skull fabric leftover from my purse-making days) as well as drawing root elements by hand with alcohol-based markers and a Tee Juice marker.

Victorian Altar Process 5Victorian Altar Process 4

Next, I drew in a cat skull with bony wing elements and painted them gold.

Victorian Altar Process 7

Then I decided that everything needed embroidery. Everything.

Victorian Altar Process 8Victorian Altar Process 9Victorian Altar Process 10Victorian Altar Process 11

Next  came the bustle. I used as the bottom layer a capelet I had made for -Ray from a vintage apron, that included hand made flowers and a portrait I drew of her sewn into the pocket. Over that are layers of a vintage linen with crocheted corners, and the top layer is a rotten Victorian collar. For height I made two sort of bum rolls out of related fabrics. Then I drew, appliqued, embroidered and painted everything.

Victorian Altar Process 13Victorian Altar Process 14

I will save the rest of the photos for a second post.

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Since that’s not enough to do, I am also volunteering as the Costume Designer for a production of Chicago that a good friend and co-worker is co-directing. The concept is that the show is being put on by a group of convicts in a modern-day women’s prison (shades of OITNB). Thus, they are all dressed in gray prison clothing which the actors have to try to make look sexy without a lot of options to remake things. If you doubt this possibility, think back to being in high school and shortening your skirt by rolling the waistband after you went to school, or tying your shirt so that some midriff showed. It’s working quite well. Also, though, a lot of their costume elements need to look like they made them from a limited amount of available materials, so I have now gotten very good at making fedoras and boaters that look like they are made from food wrappers and boxes:

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There’s also a derby hat covered in Dum-Dum wrappers for Amos as well as a bow tie and lapel flower of the same. The third boater, not pictured, is a Cheese-Its theme.

We go into Tech this week, and then, possibly, I will reclaim my summer break and actually get to relax and enjoy some of it.

Famous last words, that.

Should vs. Is

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How something “should” be contrasts wildly with how it “is.”

This is a central struggle in terms of acceptance and also action. I have to accept how things are, which means I must let go of how I think they should be. Also, though–until I accept how things are, I can’t take action to potentially make things more the way I would like for them to be. My path right now is to seek the middle; the narrow tight rope where I can balance between the extremes; in this case, the extremes of Should and Is/Are.

The Should:

should be able to come home from work, change into comfortable clothes, and then work in my studio for a few hours. I should be able to make at least a little bit of progress on my own work each day, even if I went to my day job that day. The reality, the is/are is that I come home from work, sit exhausted at my computer for up to an hour, then make dinner, start drinking wine, and go to bed in pain and worn out.

I really want the Should. That is what I feel I deserve and what I feel I want and what I feel I must have. I. Must. Have. As long as I cling to that, as long as I draw a line in the sand and tearfully, furiously demand it, the current Is/Are is where I will remain trapped. As long as I am trapped in the Is/Are, the angrier I will be that I can’t have the Should. 

It seems so easy, right? Ease up on the Should. Don’t let it go and free fall into the current Is/Are, but stop being so rigid about it. Explore the myriad of (stupid, not what I want, irritating, lesser) options that exist given the facts.

Fact: I get home from work progressively more exhausted as the week wears on. So, if the rest of the weekdays were playing cards, I can turn the Thursday card face down right now–there is no way I will have the energy to work creatively on Thursday. Often, I don’t have the energy to so much as fix more of a dinner than something frozen I can put in the oven and collect when the timer instructs me to do so. Thursday’s child with EDS, then, is not going to sew or draw.

Looking at Monday, though, there is a chance that most or much or often I *will* have the energy to spend a little time on my own projects. Monday, then, needs to be protected. I don’t have to leave as early for work because I see the Shrink at 9:00 am, and my last class is done at 3:20. If there’s going to be a chance for me to have some creative me-time, then on Sunday I should be making a dinner (or prepping food for the crock pot, or enlisting another household member’s help to prep) that will become leftovers for Monday  so that my shot at that time isn’t eaten up by the task of meal preparation.

See? That edges me back onto the tightrope again, balancing a little less precariously.

There will be Mondays when I had to work late and I can’t come home to create. There will be Mondays when I don’t feel good even though I had a shorter day and fixed dinner ahead of time. But at least SOME Mondays will be days where I can find the time to take care of my creative needs.

Tuesday shows that potential by maybe 20% less than Monday–but there is still a sliver of hope. That means that instead of dinner Monday being leftovers from Sunday, it should be a crock pot recipe that also covers Tuesday. IF I get an hour of time in my studio on Monday, that means Tuesday may only find a half hour; but the possibility is still there.

Wednesday I teach until nearly 5:00. There definitely won’t be any leftovers. Ideally, then, I would fix a dinner on Wednesday that is both easy and plentiful, to last into Thursday when I am completely fried.

Things I will have to limit:

On Monday, no booze until bedtime. Limited computer

Tuesday, the same, but maybe a bit more computer.

Wednesday–some computer, hot bath, booze.

Thursday: Whatever it takes to get through. Bath, booze, early bedtime, minimal dinner.

Even knowing that accepting certain realities will allow me to get closer to including things I want in my life, I feel resistant, which is the pull of the Should. I resent having to plan my life like this, losing some spontaneity in terms of when I will choose to work creatively, having to plan around pain and exhaustion. Yet, I can resent, dislike, rail against, resist what Is/Are all I want and I will change nothing and lose precious energy doing so. In writing, it seems a very small step to do what I have listed above, but emotionally it feels more like leaping a canyon. Except, if I look hard enough, there is probably a bridge that will allow me to cross the canyon one step at a time. That’s going to be the only way to the other side.

The Muse is Accustomed to Being Fired

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I’ve had to let the muse go due to intense hip, back, shoulder, wrist and hand pain. No longer am I enamored of my patchwork collection, instead I am judging it wanting and a waste of time. It probably isn’t either of those things but the chronic-pain-colored glasses view it as such. Every step I took yesterday hurt my hips like a wide band across my lap, from deep in the joint to radiating outward over the muscles of my thighs. By the end of the day, of course, it was worse and I lost my composure entirely and had a sobbing fit in my bed while the husband and the dog tried to figure out what to do with me.

I suspect my emotional fragility at the moment is partly due to the above and maybe somewhat influenced by hormones (O, perimenopause, you wretched, wretched bitch). While I cavalierly said I didn’t care if I was once again making a collection of things no one would buy, today I DO care about this and perused my Etsy shop just to make myself feel worse. I don’t know why I cling to Etsy when I haven’t the time to devote to keeping it up. It’s the excuse for my thrifting addiction, “I can sell it on Etsy” but no, no I can’t, not consistently. There are times, like today, when I feel like my constant making of things is foolish and sad since rarely do I have an answer to “What will you do with this?” or “Who would buy this?” Earlier this week I was content to simply be creating, happy to be in the process and satisfied by the process and the products. But the process that makes me so happy and satisfied is the same process that means I was in bed crying at 8:00 pm due to pain.

The Shrink and I are working very hard on being in the Now, since that’s the only thing we have any control over. Last night, eyes leaking, my brain kept saying, “Okay, so this is the Now but the Now is horrible and what if it’s the new forever (no, no, forgive yourself for that and go back to now) Now sucks, Now is awful!” Or, as my husband finally put it (canceling out hours of mental looping and self-criticism) “Today’s just a bad day.” Yes. And I have to learn not to then tack on, “And what if tomorrow is, too? Or worse?” Because I don’t know that, and I can’t determine that until tomorrow becomes the Now. It’s a bit of a rabbit hole.

So today is slightly better so far except that I feel like a giant, potentially leaky vessel of tears. I have a massage and maybe that will ease some of the pain. Maybe I will look at my last assemblage of pieces and find it more favorable than I did yesterday. Maybe tonight will not be a night wherein I find myself freaked out about not having pain drugs, sobbing into the dog’s neck and panicking about the future. A future in which I will possibly drown in clothes, fabric, and partially finished quilts.

And, It’s Now An Obsession

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Good heavens. I am enslaved to my muse who cares not what we will do with all these patchwork garments. Hell, she won’t even let me think much on how we might be creating yet another burden in terms of clothing I can’t sell. No, I am simply completely smitten with pieces of fabric, quilting with the serger, and debating how many times I will cut something up, assemble it, cut it up again and then assemble it.

Here is the second complete garment:

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Now what? This:

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Once it’s assembled as laid out, I’m going to cut it up again, into maybe 3″ wide strips, then reassemble. Because I am insane. My shoulders are killing me, my hands are killing me, but I can’t stop. At this point, still a long distance from the finish line, I am already casting about for what else I’ll chop up next.

I know where it all ends, I do, yet—I love being engaged in a project.

Oh, Right, Making Things

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It all started with making this skirt:

First skirt

Like any costumer worth their salt, I hoard fabric. Some of the fabrics I used in this skirt I’ve had for more than ten years. I used a vintage 1970s pattern for this maxi skirt because instead of gathering (I hate gathering, it’s so tedious) it had a flounced lower section. Once it was done, I got a little bit obsessed with the scraps, and started sewing them together like a crazy quilt until I had enough to make a second garment:

Patchwork prototype dress

This is an 8-gore retro-style sundress that I patterned myself (or, “made up as I went along”). Each time I joined a piece of fabric in the patchwork phase, I serged it, then topstitched the seam allowance so it would all lay nice and flat. Once I finished that, I corralled all the final tiny bits of scraps and made another small section. I thought it would be interesting, artistically, if each garment had an element of the garment that preceded it, so that is waiting to to see how it will be included in round two, which I did in strips:

Patchwork Round Two

What I haven’t decided is if I will take this yardage I’ve made and cut it all up again and re-assemble in a crazier way before I make it into a skirt, or if I’m going to call this the finished fabric and make it into a skirt now. Decisions, decisions.

If you are thinking that this is what’s probably why all my joints hurt, you might be right, but stopping isn’t on the menu when I’ve got a closet full of fabric (plus multiple bins throughout the house) that I could use for this. I plan to list a grouping on Etsy once I have enough, rather than listing them piecemeal as I finish each one. That way it’s a sort of fashion collection. Then we’ll see if they ever happen to sell. That, or I have an amazing new patchwork wardrobe, right?

There Will Be a Break

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My Spring Break begins tomorrow. My week can be summed up with this entirely true transcript of a conversation with a student:

Co-worker: Student, go outside and get some small rocks. They need to be smaller than the buttons you are painting so that you can set the buttons on them to dry without them sticking to the rocks.

Student (who wears a perennial expression of surprise/lack of comprehension and speaks at a volume of 11): OH OKAY THE ROCKS I GOT LAST TIME DIDN’T WORK?

Co-worker: No, they were huge rocks so the buttons stuck to them.

Student: OH OKAY.

-goes outside-

-returns-

Student: UM I CAN’T GET ANY ROCKS THEY ARE WET. IT’S RAINING.

Me:

Co-worker:

Me: Yanno, the rocks aren’t soggy….bring some in and dry them off.

Student: OH OKAY. WHAT DO I DRY THEM WITH?

Me: Paper towels?

Co-worker (at the same time as me): Hair dryer?

Student: OH OKAY. WHICH WOULD BE BETTER?

Headdesk, headdesk, headdesk.

While I have my doubts about the design for the show we are heading into (Shakespeare’s 12th Night), I am building a really cool dress for an actor I really like working with. This is the mock-up (I flat patterned this dress myself, having not found any patterns to work for what the designer wanted):

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It has these cool side pockets that are like a modernized upside down pannier. The actual dress is being built out of this amazing, very heavy, sueded, charcoal gray stretch fabric that feels almost as dense as a wet suit. Here is the base dress:

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Photos do not do justice to how amazing the fabric is. I got the big pockets put on but haven’t photographed it yet because I haven’t closed the center back seam. Interestingly, when she came in for the fitting to mark that line, the actor wore a tiny lace thong, which I then had to be eye-to-eye with  (it, or its absence anyway) while I fit the dress. Ah, youthful confidence, how you hath flown from my withered loins….The final fashion touches (big exposed zippers, a flap that zips down to show a color) will go on when we return from our break, hopefully rested and less aggravated by morons than we were when we started out.

My pain level has increased a few notches, overall, and I am back waking up at night because my shoulders hurt too much to get comfortable. My left hand falls asleep at least 3 times a week. Sometimes my right does, too. I am going to try getting a 90 minute massage instead of a 60 minute one each Friday for awhile to see if it helps, but I am wound as tightly as possible. I’ve noticed that after typing awhile I start to lose the ability to direct my fingers. They lock and fumble and become weak and I start streaming gibberish across the screen instead of what I meant to say. It’s frustrating, and depressing. I’ve considered seeing if I could try Baclofen again just at night. I can’t remember why I gave that up, actually, but there was a reason. I get home from work and I am exhausted, wiped out, not energized to work on my own projects, just bone weary. I hate that, but it is what it is. It takes a lot of energy to deal with constant pain *and* do my job *and* be kind, pleasant, encouraging, a role model, not an asshole.

Thus, the goal of Spring Break: to return feeling better able to be all those good things. Graciously.

In An Ongoing Series of Small Steps

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I mentioned in my December 31 post that I continue to be somewhat stuck artistically when it comes to drawing. Nothing will change overnight, and I doubt that sudden change would even be that healthy, really. However, I’ve started spending some time each morning pinning illustrations that I like to this Pinterest board. I zip through really fast, simply pinning anything that speaks to me at all, pushing away the little voice that says, “But that’s not consistent with what you have already pinned” or “You pick the same image over and over again” (this critic also likes to point out to me that I buy the same painting over and over again). I just pin. Pin, pin, pin, immerse, pin.

Immersion. Getting lost in it. This morning I read this post by Terri Windling, whose blog I follow and lurk at, and admittedly often skim because she writes a lot, and a lot of it is about writing, not drawing. I have long understood that perfectionism is, indeed, a problem for me. Starting my art journal late last year was intended to help with that–a completely secret thing where it doesn’t matter what I draw. Even then, I relentlessly critique it. I force myself to cross out a word I spelled wrong and NOT tear out the page and move on. I resist the voice that suggests that my composition lacks balance on the page. Somewhere, underneath that voice, I know that what is valuable; visually and otherwise, is the journal in its totality, not a page with a weird space at the bottom, or a crooked drawing.

As mentioned in her post, I also know exactly who I take into the studio with me; my father. Oh, my father, who encouraged me to make art and then relentlessly, endlessly criticized it and me. All of those events are taped and neatly filed in my brain and I can take them out and relive them anytime. I would like to stop doing that. I would like, very much, to un-invite my father to my work. To close the door before he steps into my studio. My secretiveness about my artwork stems from him pawing through it without permission, sometimes even taking things and adding to them. I drew all the time as a kid, sitting on the floor at the coffee table with a sketchbook and pencil, and my dad sniping constantly, questioning my process, my subject matter, my choices. Eventually he won, and I stopped drawing at the coffee table and took it to my room. And then years later, I would sometimes stop altogether, sometimes for months or even for years. I still do.

I have let go of perfectionism when it comes to sewing, though, so I sew all the time. My father doesn’t know a single thing about sewing, or about costume design, for that matter, and he knows very little about me as stitching artist, because he died before I found this world. He can’t enter this part of my life, he’s never been here before. Other critics, my co-worker who can sometimes be scathing, even, don’t bother me. I can see their jabs as simply their own insecurities, and I know I am very, very good at what I do, even as I have so much to continue to learn. Which is not to say that I don’t sometimes catch myself, particularly at work, wanting to start my project alone, secretly, so no one can question what I am doing, or apologizing for an imperfection before anyone else can criticize it. But I am much, much better at letting go of all of that where sewing is concerned.

Drawing is a lot closer to my core, it is a much more vulnerable process. I took so much of it into my own interior that now it has trouble getting out into the world. I think I took it prisoner when I meant to make it safe. That is something I would like to manage this year; I’d like to let it out of jail. My art journal, my other work, they are all little releases–a little work-release as it were–but the full-on jailbreak is still ahead of me. Terri’s post mentions several keys that might unlock some of the locks, which is very positive.

Tiny, Tiny, Tiny steps.

Precipitous; the Edge of the Year

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I am not immune to the cultural pull towards using New Year’s Eve and NY Day to contemplate and make plans and resolutions, yet I also know that really, nothing has changed and that were I to ask too much of myself, it would all simply end in failure. To some degree, then, I try to think in terms of “continuances” rather than “resolutions.”

Easy stuff first, I plan to continue to do those things that I know are good for me, but that I must also still be resolute in my commitment.

Massage is the easiest one. I have set the tone and made it clear in my workplace that I will not miss my massage for any reason.

The Shrink. I did not intend this to be a long-term engagement, but it helps. It gives me somewhere to talk openly about my feelings about having EDS, it gives me tools to better care for myself, and it’s a space I’ve made that I don’t want to give up.

I want to continue to be mindful that I do not have to show anyone the light, I simply need to BE the light. They can choose to see it or not. An example of this would be my urge sometimes to shake someone who does not see the terrible behavior and dishonesty of a mutual friend and my own ego-based need to Make Them See. Instead, I need to remember that *I* can see, and I will not hide that. The rest I have to let them find on their own. They will be the ones to tell me if they can be a big part of my life or a little part.

Other, more difficult things:

I try very hard to balance my need for friends and socialization with my needs for rest and time alone. It’s easy when I am off, as I am now, to lunch and have coffee and message and make plans. It’s harder when I am working. I have made a new friend who has also had a long-term illness and she very much understands my limitations, which is nice. Because she’s a new friend, though, I want to spend hours and hours with her. Balance, grasshopper, balance.

Art. What is my deal with art? When I go to my studio I look longingly at the drawing table and then I pick a new sewing project. Lately, part of my hesitation is that I am worried I am losing dexterity. I have been experiencing a lot more pain in my hands and wrists  recently, and I know my handwriting (which, naturally, has always been perfect) is slipping. So I worry about finding out I can’t draw. But that’s also bullshit, because as true as that concern is, it affects sewing just as much, and I haven’t stopped sewing at all. I’ve actually sewn more. It’s that same old roadblock that I cannot seem to consistently scale and leave behind. What is it? I still don’t know. Maybe 2015 is the year when I’ll figure it out.

Finally, I go into the new year with a new symptom that I’m worried about. Yesterday I nearly fainted while sitting at my sewing machine. It was clearly a cardiac related thing; my heart “whomped” really hard in my chest and I got that gray tunnel vision and felt my blood withdrawing from my hands and nearly went over. Then it passed. My mom says this has happened to her, so I don’t guess I’ll die, but I feel like even with all those things up there that I’m doing to take care of myself, I don’t have a lot of room or flex for anything else. Not that I have a choice, not that it isn’t how progressive, complex disorders work.

Despite that, I will still be here for 2015, still have a job, still be able to work as an artist for as long as possible. I hope the year is full of good things for everyone.