November 27, 2014 § Leave a comment
So. I am frustrated.
This year… has been incredibly lame. For me, personally. It hasn’t been a bad year, by any means. My health is good, my family’s health is overall ok, weddings and babies have outnumbered funerals. It’s just been an incredibly lame year. I made a lot of lame decisions, and carried out a lot of lame actions, and it all feels very lame. A fact you know if you’ve talked to me in the last six to eight months, because I can’t seem to stop talking about it. Work. Crappy choices. Being stuck in the same loop of “Of course I can do that!” and “CRAP why did I say yes to that??” over and over again until my friends, my family, my husband, my cats, no one expects me to be around. No one relies on me, no one leans on me, no one trusts I’ll be able to carry out any promise I make. Because I am so. Addicted. To work. Like you do when you’re an artist. Or an American. Or, whatever, I don’t know it’s a far-reaching issue. To be fair, I felt I had to work so much so I could make ends meet financially. But since I spent the better part of this year working 80 hour weeks and I was still too broke to go to happy hour, obviously it wasn’t working.
And then I got a raise. I got a raise! I was finally being paid what I was worth, sort of! And then I had to keep riding out my commitments, because when you’re broke and freelancing you schedule months and months in advance, because that one month behind will put you behind forever. And I am not exaggerating (for those of you who thought I might be.) Before I got my raise, I had been trying to “get ahead” on a month I fell behind on almost a year and a half previous. (This is a really obvious and stupid statement to some of you, but to others it is something unfathomable so I felt I had to explain.)
Anyway. I had big plans this year. Remember my New Years Resolution? Less talky talky more action? Well I haven’t done much of that, if anything. I donated $12 to saving bees and I got a lovely thank you note from The University of Maryland, so I felt pretty good about that. And I’ve been doing more yoga, but let’s be honest if you follow me on IG you know it’s half assed. And otherwise I haven’t done much for society or the environment other than… I don’t know. Not have kids? Make plans to someday raise feminist environmentalist kids? Take some plastic bottles home to recycle when it was mildly inconvenient to do so? What an activist! And remember my Birthday Resolution? Accept me including all my faults? Well what about my destructive faults that keep me from achieving any kind of potential I had as a person? Those are the faults that have apparently decided to come and play in 2014.
So like I said, lame.
And now there is activism exploding everywhere, or at least the potential for activism, because we are living in an explosive time in history and everything is changing very fast and it could be for the good or the bad depending on who participates. And my friends and family are living their lives and exploring their relationships and growing as people, because that is life. And through all this my hands are tied because I already said yes to summer camp, and that one show, and that other show, and overtime at my day job, because paycheck. Also an overwhelming need to please people who don’t already love me.
Is this what being an artist is? Forever chasing that paycheck, and every once in awhile stumbling across a true experience? Why am I doing this? Why do I make myself so tired? What about my office job that made me so miserable is actually worse than this feeling of perpetually treading water and never growing?
I don’t know, but I keep doing it.
So here is an internet promise on not-quite-but-it-feels-as-real paper and ink that I am getting better. I am DOING BETTER. I can afford to turn down jobs that don’t stretch me as an artist. And so I will do that.
That is my promise to myself, and my zero blog readers. 2015 IS MY YEAR OF NO*
*To things I don’t want to do. Obv. And I’m not waiting until 2015 to turn over a new leaf, it just sounds better that way, and also I’m officially done for the year and no one is going to call with a last minute Christmas show request at the end of November so it feels like cheating to pat myself on the back about that. 2015 YEAH BABY YEAH