I Was Tired…

October 19, 2014

Yeah. I know. I missed a couple posts. I was really tired. And sick. And then I went on a hike, which made me tired again. And sick is still hovering, though mostly only at night. And when I’m tired. And when you hear me talk. Anyway. Hopefully I did enough sleep catchup in the last few days to last for a bit. Still missing a big chunk of my working voice though. Oh well.

The good news is that I finished ironing everything down on Friday night (yes, I went to Sea World with 180 kids and then came home and went shopping with the girlchild and THEN I ironed).

This is what the tree looked like after I pulled it off the ironing sheet…

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See why I was scared to do that? I untangled that thing about three times Friday night, trying to get it to fit on the background…because all of the quilts for this show are supposed to be the same size, which I have a really hard time doing. I can easily do a range, but god forbid I draw the piece so that there’s some leeway on each side. NAW. Let’s make it go RIGHT to the edges.

Yeah, I know. My fault. So I cut the background with about 2 inches to spare on the horizontal and vertical measurements, and then made it work. Maybe. We’ll see when I go to trim it.

And then I put the whole mess on the floor and started putting the parts on to make it fit…and that’s where I have to stop showing pictures. You’ll have to wait until January, when the show opens. Here’s the bottom…

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I had some issues with the batik bleeding again. I’ll have to figure out what I want to do about that…you’d think I’d remember to use that stuff when I wash it, the Retayne…but I always forget. So either I’ll be using pencil or pen or something to handle that. More work. Oh well. Maybe next time I will remember to wash it special.

I was going to be all gung ho after the hike Saturday morning, but it kicked my butt (yeah, hiking while getting over being sick all week was maybe not a great plan, but I really did need to get the fuck out of the house and into nature, so I just did it), so I didn’t get anything done Saturday afternoon. And then girlchild had night soccer, where I graded…

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We were missing a bunch of kids for a variety of reasons, so even though they should have won (they’ve beat this team before), they didn’t…

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And the girls basically had to play all 90 minutes, so girlchild went down with a calf cramp after getting kicked there…

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Thought it was her knee for a minute…dammit…never going to get her through a whole season! But just a cramp. She’s fine today. But we didn’t get home until after 8, and my brain was in a mood, so I fed it and made it meditate. I haven’t been meditating enough, because honestly, a lot of the time when I’m doing the art stuff, it does the same thing for me as meditation, focuses my brain, calms me, gives me some mental strength. But last night, I just felt unfocused and cranky and tired, so I did it. And it was good.

So I came in and did the final step of the ironing down…totaling the ironing out at 15 hours and 18 minutes (my estimate of 15 hours holds!). And then I started stitching down. I wasn’t going to, because I was still tired, but I really wanted to get a START on it. Because Sundays are notoriously bad for artmaking, due to the grocery shopping and the prepping for school and the hanging out with parents. I usually don’t get to do anything until late at night. I wish I were more efficient in the morning, but it really is the only morning I can just space out and make English muffin pizzas for breakfast and hang out and not have to DO anything or BE anywhere. Yes, I’m hanging out with myself (actually, girlchild was here this morning early), and that’s often depressing, but whatever. Someone claimed they were going to “laugh at the loneliness” once, and I thought it sounded like bullshit then and I still do…you don’t laugh at loneliness. You stare at it for a while and eventually you just embrace it, hold on to it tight, and if you can make it go sit in a closet for a while because you’re hanging out with friends or family, or because you’re at school, or because you’re in the artspace and haven’t come out yet…that’s awesome. But mostly, you can try to ignore it or yell at it or just accept that it’s there and hold its hand…but laughing at it is kinda stupid. It’s not gone because you laughed at it. I laugh all the time. It doesn’t make it go away. It’s still there, staring at you. Stupid depression. Doesn’t help. Stupid hormones. Also don’t help.

Stitching down…

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one of the more boring parts of the quilting process. I know that to stay on schedule, I have to keep MAKING a schedule. So I look back at the Celebrating Silver quilt, because I’ve been basing everything on that one (about the same size and number of pieces)…so I’m guessing 5 hours to stitch it down, another 2 to pinbaste, and about 14 hours of quilting. I want it pinbasted by Saturday night. Quilting starts Sunday? I should remember I have some obligations this week…maybe.

Anyway. Progress. It’s always progress here at Kathy Central. If I keep running forward, then the bad shit can’t catch me, right? Naw, sometimes it’s pretty fast and I’m hiking with dead legs (that was yesterday going uphill…dead legs). Now I’m going to be running forward into the 70 million errands I need to run today in order to be ready for the week. And you wonder why I’m so tired.


Man Parts

October 15, 2014

So yeah, I’m known for my naked women. I’ve actually been making art with female nudes since college, so when people get all freaked out about it now, it just fucking confuses me. This is year 29, people. Get over it. Putting clothes on people puts a whole ‘nother meaning into it. I like the idea of universal ideas or personal experiences being shown through the naked body…and my bodies aren’t just naked…they’re god-damned see-through. You can see parts in there! So then you gotta wonder about why I show SOME parts and not others. I wonder if there’s any significance to that (just a hint on that…sometimes no. Sometimes I just likes to draw the inner gutlike workings.).

Anyway, occasionally in my checkered past (and my checkered present), I draw the male figure. I have to admit that usually it’s because I’m pissed off at them. I’ve had some significantly bad experiences with males (shit, should I admit that online? Oh. Well, I guess if you’ve read this blog at all, you probably figured it out. I’m sure it’s all my fault.), and bad things often end up in my art. I try not to make it all bad, though. I’ve got some reasonable males in my life. Mostly. And some of the jerks have redeemed themselves. Mostly. Maybe. But mostly I focus on women because that’s my experience, and most of what I draw is me, my experiences, my ideas. Because, like, I’m the artist. Duh.

Anyway. For the upcoming Expressions in Equality exhibit (which will be at the Visions Art Museum in January), I chose gender equality…because I draw so much about women and women’s lives and women’s rights…I wanted to try to do this. Because despite society and all the dumbass stuff I’ve been reading lately from men who feel a need to proclaim that Men Have Needs That Women Don’t Understand (oh sweetie, we DO understand; we just don’t agree.) and certain political groups’ desires to have control over my woman parts, I do honestly wish/hope/almost believe that there is such a thing as gender equality. I have a whole post that I’ve been working on about this…but it’s chock full of stupid stuff society does and says to demean and fuck over women. And I really shouldn’t be writing ANYTHING about gender equality while I’m watching episodes of Big Love…because it just pisses me off.

So drawing this…I had to be in the right frame of mind…and yes, I warned the curator up front that there would be a penis. Because if I’m going to continue in this vein of it being universal woman…it has to be universal man, and he’s not wearing boxers.

Someone once asked me if I knew how to draw naked men. Um. I get the weirdest questions. I have done life drawing for years. But yeah. Because I have STUDENTS to show me…

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I actually critique their drawings…we get lots of them. It’s the age. For one like that, I always tell them it’s someone who has never seen one before, because that’s not what they look like. That kinda freaks them out, because it’s usually the boys drawing them.

Anyway, so now that you know what the typical day of a middle-school teacher is like (I was gonna put science teacher, but the other teachers on my team get the penis drawings too), know that I am building a man figure now…

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And I’m almost done. Yes, I go to the office with my briefcase full of money NAKED. It’s a metaphor people. (Someone will make a comment. I know. I don’t care.) The real key is that I ironed last night. Yes, I’m still sick. But this ironing/art thing is important. I’m getting there. I’m in the early 800s, so about 250 pieces to go. I’ve been ironing for about 10 1/2 hours, so still on time with the estimate. So being sick the previous night didn’t set me back too badly. I think I can do it. All the poor guy needs is a head, and then I’m up in the tree…and I have to decide how best to iron that, because branches all over the place can be a pain in the ass. Plus all those leaves and hangy things. And at some point, I can’t show you this any more, because I’m supposed to wait until the exhibit opens. We’re getting close to that point.

I’m just glad there’s progress. Work is such a bog at the moment…too much work, too much planning, spending time dealing with union stuff. I was at the school board meeting last night, all in red, like everyone else (we packed the room), because they don’t want to pay us. Last year, the raise got eaten up by health care costs. Probably on purpose. We took pay cuts. Health insurance is going up again and our district doesn’t want to cover any of those costs.

Damn cat again…

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She looks pissed off too. Probably because I bopped her on the nose when she tried to settle in among all the laid-out quilt pieces. What is it with cats and fabric? I just have to sacrifice small piles of it so she can shed all over it.

Anyway. Head tonight. Tree tonight. It’s getting exciting. Sort of. Not TOO exciting.

OK, I had to edit this to tell you that WordPress suggested I tag this post with “naked women”. Really, WordPress? Does that SEEM like a good idea? Technology can be so fucking stupid.


How Art Doesn’t Happen

October 14, 2014

First, make sure the artist is getting sick. And she’s been fighting it for a week, so a week of sore throats and feeling sorta off, and then she thinks she’s better, and all of a sudden, in like 10 minutes, once the kids get out of the classroom, BOOM. That’s it. The virus kicks her ass and takes her down. Really. It was that fast.

So then, our faithful artist comes home (after a long meeting) and sprawls on the couch with tea and a bunch of seating charts, because she needs to adjust seating, and it takes an hour, because she’s trying to think it through, and fuzzy head. Thinking bad. Meds. Must take meds. Drink more tea. Because her evening is not over. Oh no, it has just begun. A fundraiser for soccer at some dive grill in Lakeside.

OK. I can do this. I need to eat and this way I don’t have to cook. Girlchild comes home from soccer and they go…and it’s loud screaming chaos, a million people and some crazy ass woman screaming throughout the room, yelling out raffle prizes (we don’t want any thanks). Order food. Think I’m OK. Eat. Help girlchild with the Democratic Party platform (she is the Democratic candidate for her history class this year…her brother was the Dem campaign manager last year, which pretty much sums up their personalities right there…BUT, he did help her via text with her platform). Head for home, feeling tired, but not uberly (not a word) sick.

Come home, help more with platform, can’t remember what GITMO stands for (whatever…I know lots of things about the world, but I also know how to Google when I can’t remember shit), but I feel somewhat perturbed that I know more about ebola than I do about Hong Kong…although if you know me, that makes sense.

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Your photo today courtesy of girlchild’s Homecoming crew…at least they have fun…and there was no art, so no pictures of art. Because I didn’t do any.

Sitting on the couch, sprawled really, trying to find the motivation to get UP and iron. Really. You can do it. Standing up. Fuck no. Too tired. Too sick. Slam. OK. Think it through. I did think. I thought I could push myself through, but I remembered that it was only Monday, and that I have a whole week of school to get through, and what I really need is to get better, especially since my school day today will start at 8 and go to 6 PM. So yeah. I went to bed. At like 10:30. Seriously. That’s how you know I’m sick. And I slept for about an hour. Before the food poisoning from the dive grill fundraiser decided I should be up again. So I guess at least I’m glad my body is efficient. I was only vomiting for about 45 minutes and then I was done. And I went back to sleep (good thing I went to bed early, eh?).

Giant sigh.

I’m OK this morning. Well, the cold is still here. I still have no voice. My nose alternately runs and stops air from entering my body. But otherwise I’m fine. Cranky, but fine. Just yelled at a cat for sitting on the back of the chair. Yelled at the dog for eating underwear (that’s legit, folks…she eats a ton of that…not mine, but the girlchild’s, because she leaves it everywhere). I’ll probably yell at some kids today because they’re gonna be sitting there, staring at the words, wondering how to READ without actually READING. Because that’s an issue. It tries my patience. And yet I still assign the occasional reading assignment (OK, more than occasional). Like I’m trying to torture them. The LAST reading thing I gave them was about zombies and was a comic book, so you’d think they would have appreciated that. Naw, the same kids who won’t be reading today weren’t reading then. Parents…please please please, make ‘em read. It’s OK. Today is also phone call day. Have the kids call and ask parents to remind them to sign their failed assignments, so I know the parents know…although it seems like some of them must not care. Your child brings home a progress report with 5 Fs on it? And you don’t do anything? Don’t contact teachers? Don’t wait on me…I got 140 of them…feel free to contact me, because I have a list, and I can only get through one or two parent meetings a week, and I already have three for this week.

Yes, we have a list of kids we need to assist, of parents we need to contact, and yesterday, we full on admitted that we can’t do all of them right now…so we prioritized. Which ones could we help the most, which ones needed the most assistance, which ones were MORE LIKELY to actually benefit from our assistance. So your kid with his 5 Fs? He didn’t get very high on the list, because he doesn’t seem to give a shit, but mostly because of you…because we haven’t heard a word from you, we haven’t seen you at back-to-school night, last year’s teachers didn’t beg us to push for testing or meetings, no one cared about your kid…and we CARE, but we only have so many hours in the day. We’re buried this year, trying to implement blended learning and one-on-one computers on a daily basis…and we need you to get on the phone or email and stand up for your kid. Do some of the work. We can’t do all of it. You brought this child into the world…why don’t you care enough to follow up when he’s failing? Yes, I know there are many answers to that, and many of them are endemic to my school population, but we also have great parents who are on top of things and paying attention and doing their job.

Yeah. That’s what I’m taking to school with me today. And hopefully, by 6, when I get out of the school board meeting where I have to show up dressed in red so the school board realizes we’re pissed off that they won’t cover our health insurance increases and they won’t give us a reasonable wage out of the huge chunk of money they got from the state, hopefully when I’m done with all that, I’ll be well enough to make some art.

But first I need to cough up a lung.


Recovery

October 11, 2014

I apparently needed some recovery the last two nights. I got home from the drawing thing relatively early (well, for normal people, it would have been bedtime), and I couldn’t focus on ironing or grading (the two things that currently rule my world), so I made a cup of tea and took it to bed with a book. That is one of those things I love to do, by the way, and I rarely do it: read in bed with a cup of tea. I try to fit it in to my weekends, at least once on the two days, but honestly, sometimes it’s just not possible (like this weekend, for example). I’m feeling incredibly overwhelmed with work and life and even art, working my butt off in every realm, so it made sense to just take a break from all of it and read about somebody else’s world.

I was hoping I would be less useless last night, but ha! Oh yeah. So I went to an opening after school and counseling, not a short drive, blood sugar not great (I did not plan well…I plan better for hikes than I do for social events). The SAQA regional exhibit Shades of Passion opened officially last night at the Poway Center for the Performing Arts. It runs through October 29 and is open Tuesday through Friday from 9-5 and Saturdays from 11-3, although I suspect most people see the work when they are there for a performance or event. I think my piece might confuse a few people…

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Eyeball Tree has no nudity, so it was really my only option for entry. There’s a size and content restriction, so I often struggle with finding work in my collection for this show. I do try to have a few smaller, nude-free pieces around for stuff like this. There’s another one I know is coming up next summer for Ventura’s public buildings, so I will need to think about making a few more next year (after I finish the crazy that I’m working on now). That is probably the closest I get to changing my work for upcoming shows…I go through my drawings and find the ones with no nudity and make one or two of those if I like them. Or I don’t. It’s interesting, though, that the two pieces that did get into Visions and Quilt National were both minus nudity.

It was early when I got to the opening, so there weren’t a lot of people…mostly women, some wandering around and asking if this art quilt thang was a new thang. Um. No. But thanks for coming. My pictures are crap and I didn’t even try to write artists’ names down (I blame exhaustion)…

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But there is some very nice work in the show…

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As always, I’m never really sure how the theme pertains to what’s hung.

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But it probably doesn’t matter to those observing.

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I didn’t even get pictures of all the quilts…too many people in the way.

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But it gives you an idea of what’s there, in case you want to stop in and take much better photos than I did.

I have two more openings tonight, one the second soft opening of the FIG show at Art Produce and one is QuiltVisions, which I’m looking forward to, mostly to see what got in, but maybe to see people as well. Depends on how social I’m feeling. Hopefully more social than last night, after more than 8 hours of sleep.

Because what I did when I got home? I waffled. I sat down on the couch and arranged the stuff to be graded. I ARRANGED it. I did not start grading. I made a cup of tea because I was tired. Then I started reading my book. And I kept meaning to stop reading and do some grading or ironing, and then I got distracted by weird bills from Cornell that said the boychild had gone to the doctor, when he says he didn’t. Money’s tight. I’m not paying for someone else’s STD testing. (that’s not really what it was, but you can mess with the boychild pretty easily if you want about that stuff) And then the girlchild came home from Homecoming (came home from…that’s funny) and we finally got the lizard off the ceiling after three days (it’s a really high ceiling…it took a box, a bench, a stepladder, and a duster). And then I was going to try (after second cup of tea) to iron. And then I was just too damn tired. So I went to bed. And about 14 things woke me up in the night, so I am still tired now, but I obviously needed all that sleep.

I will iron today. I will grade today. I will get caught up on something. My goal of being ironed down to the background fabric by next Friday? Um. I don’t know. I’m hoping I can pull it off, but it honestly means I will probably have to get at least 4 hours done this weekend, which I can probably do, unless my brain wanders off and reads a whole book in one evening like it did last night. Stupid brain.

And all the rejection stuff in my head, because rejection is not just living in my art at the moment, I’m just pushing it off into the corner and working. Because if I get enough work done, whether it’s grading papers or ironing tiny pieces of fabric together, I think the rest of it will matter less.


Must Draw.

October 4, 2014

I have all this art-related stuff going on, all these deadlines I’ve been managing really since summer, and my life is different, in that I don’t have the same situation that seemed to encourage more drawing…so I realized that some of the tense growliness that is existing in the back part of my head…it’s because I haven’t been drawing enough. Drawing literally seems to pull these big black wormy nasty bits out of my mind and plop them down on paper, and it works like meditation. I should be doing it EVERY DAY. OK, so that’s not going to happen, because I already have lots of stupid stuff I have to do every day, like eat, sleep, work, meditate, exercise, and poop. Maybe some more things too. But I do like this idea of setting time aside (damn, I need to find more time somewhere…in Clash of Clans, you can buy gems…in my life, I need to be able to buy hours) to draw. Of making a date with myself to draw.

So I picked Friday nights. And it’s not like I spent a lot of introspective time considering options and debating pros and cons of small drawings every other day or one large drawing or when do I consistently have time. I was sitting on the couch on Friday night, alone because the girlchild was watching a soccer game at UCSD. Or SDSU. I’m not sure which. And I had finished grading one section of the 700 things I need to grade this weekend, because fucking progress reports are due. Hate progress reports. Go Look at the Online Gradebook, parents! It’s all there! Anyway. My personal issues aside (I don’t really hate progress reports…I just hate doing them). And I thought, I feel squirmy in my skin. I’m exhausted from the week (it’s been a doozy!). I don’t want to be responsible and grade more stuff. I wanna. I wanna. What do I wanna? I wanna draw.

So I did. For like 2 hours.

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And there she is. Meditation Pose 1. Implying there might be more (maybe not, and then when I die and someone does my retrospective catalog, y’all can discuss why I stopped with one). By the way, I don’t meditate in anything approaching this pose (or in the nude, for that matter), because my knees would protest that position. I’m all about comfortable meditation poses, because then I can focus on the brain instead of my aging body.

There’s a lot going on in this drawing, which I really like. And I’m going to try really hard to keep doing something on Friday nights, because I’m usually braindead on Fridays anyway and really shouldn’t be allowed to do anything that requires brain power at all, and the brain power I use for drawing comes from an entirely different source (THE source, I think), but I say that, and I already know next Friday will be an issue because of an art opening. Oh well. I can try. I can put it on the calendar. It would be more than I’m doing now. The last big drawing I did was the end of July (although I then continued it in September or late August, so it’s not like I’m not drawing…it’s just not so freeform). I feel like when I’m 90, I will still be rearranging my busy schedule to try to fit everything in.

Did I have TIME to draw? Fuck no. Like I said, grades are due and I haven’t finished this yet…

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Fucker. I cut for over an hour last night, but it’s still a ways away from being finished. It doesn’t look like much…

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but it takes time to cut all those pieces out. So I will find that time today…hopefully. Around the gym and soccer and grades. Because these are the things that make me feel better. Not the things where I have bills to pay and people to manage and papers to correct and rooms to clean. That shit just sucks. And although you have to be adult and responsible and DO some of that shit, it shouldn’t be all you do.

By the way, Babygirl just stepped on my mouse and deleted half a paragraph, and is now lying with her tail on the keyboard and her butt completely obscuring the mouse, with a surprised, yet petulant look every time I touch the mouse. “You’re touching my butt.” “Get your butt off my mouse.” Damn cats.

OK, gym. Food. Work. Art. Soccer. Not in that order. Taking care of oneself takes so much damn energy.


A Bit Lost and a Lot Damaged…

October 1, 2014

So I posted yesterday from a college presentation in a hotel up in La Jolla after reporting the girlchild’s car stolen (OK, the boychild might argue that it is HIS car, and I would truthfully tell both of them that it is MY car that they are allowed to drive and apparently allow to be stolen). Yes, it was locked. My brain had hit stress overload about two hours prior and was quickly self-destructing, as that little section that asserts control started pushing all the bad shit into the corner and blocking it off…”You can’t see that. It’s not there.” My counselor says I should just deal with one day at a time right now…I think yesterday I managed the Next Five Minutes at a time. And it worked. Honestly. We managed everything, the sheriffs (is that a word? It sounds wrong) were at my house at 10 PM, we ate dinner in there somewhere, because I had the brains to prep it before we left for the presentation, and did I grade anything last night? Ha. You know the answer to that AND the swear words I would apply to it. Insert here.

I did manage about 40 minutes of fabric last night. Zonked out and woke up too early to the girlchild’s ride to school (thank god for friends), drove off to my school and completely lost it. Understand there are some other major things going on that didn’t help. Made it to school, got everything under control. School is a good place to be when you’re freaking out, because you can’t spare the brain power to actually Freak Out. You have too many kids in your class, too many fires to put out, too much to manage to completely lose it. Trust me. I know this. I survived last year precisely because of that.

And during 7th period, girlchild texted me (in all caps) that they had found the car. That it had not been shipped to Mexico for parts (it’s one of those cars, old, but useful). That it had not been damaged. A couple things were stolen, but nothing of huge import, and it’s drivable. And the other major situation semi-resolved itself as well by the end of the day, and all that crap that was standing on my shoulders and JUMPING up and down…it was gone. Mostly. Better.

So I went to the gym and I ate and I finished my book for book club tomorrow night and I graded a little bit and then I cut out pieces, because I still have this crazy goal to have that all done this week…

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The top bin has the pieces I haven’t cut (an awful lot of them), the middle one is stuff that’s cut out, and the bottom one is trash, which I hold on to for a bit, just to make sure I didn’t throw a piece in there by accident (it happens). I got a lot done tonight…I’m about 5 hours in. I guessed what? I don’t remember. Fifteen hours? Aargh. Not happening by Friday, that’s for sure. I’m getting there, but not fast enough. My plans for the weekend? Grading papers, progress reports, watching soccer, going to the gym, and dealing with this quilt. Nothing else. I have something else I will do if I am far enough along, but I suspect I won’t be. So now my goal is to have everything cut out by the end of day Saturday, hopefully even sorting the pieces Saturday, so I can start ironing Sunday. If I can get it ironed by the 17th? I might be OK. I will still have to pinbaste that weekend and then start quilting.

I’m going to be gone for Houston at the end of the month, so I lose three days…three good days, of course, because I’m going to Houston with my mom to the Celebrating Silver opening…I got my catalog yesterday…

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It was nicely packaged with a silver bow and a silver padded envelope. It looks like it will be a nice exhibit…

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I’m going to remember to bring my catalog with me this time so I can have the artists sign. There will be a few artist walk and talks, but I will only be able to do Friday at 2 PM. Stop by and say hi if you’re around. I will also hopefully be at the SAQA meetup the night before, assuming we don’t miss any flights. I will also be at the Visions opening next weekend, even though I didn’t get in (because I rarely do) and the SAQA Shades of Passion opening on Friday next week in Poway as well, although running late. I guess October is art opening month. So that cuts into my working time. Plus I’m trying to make sure girlchild gets to all the college presentations that she wants to go to…she’s doing it so differently than the boychild, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

Anyway. After the stress of the last 36 hours, it was nice to just sit in the quiet tonight and cut things out while watching bad vampire television. My brain basically shut down…well, except for the part that was questioning the bad science on the teevee. I’m relieved about the car…trying to buy another car at this point is just not on the list of things I can deal with…hell, I can’t deal with hanging the TV on the wall or fixing the door handle for real. Maybe I can go back to planning one day at a time now, instead of 5 minutes. You never know. I’m trying to dial down the overload with school, totally using my teacher’s aide as much as I can (he’s awesome, by the way) and not taking on too much. Ha. Yeah. That’s always a joke. But I’m trying.

I suspect that’s all I can do at the moment. Continue to try, to move a little bit each day, to find sanity and laughter and goofiness in every day. I stalked a 6th grader today who was talking to himself…followed him for a while until he noticed, jumped a bit, and then giggled. I’m amazed by how many kids know my name, even though they’re not mine. I’m glad to be finding some of my goofball self again. Slowly but surely she’s coming back. The part that dances in stores and sings at the top of my lungs in the mall and chases kids all over the quad. That person. She needs to be around more. She’s OK. Wow. It really hurts to say that. Because I know she was gone for so long. Hidden. Hiding. Lost. Damaged. And she’s still a bit lost and a lot damaged, but she’s ready to dress up like a painting and ride a bike in combat boots and hike like a zombie. If the universe could ramp down the car abductions and other crap, that would be a plus.


Maintain, Dammit. Maintain.

September 28, 2014

Deep breaths. Keep thinking of the positives. I finished ironing last night (it was 2 in the morning). It took 14 hours and 14 minutes to pick all those fabrics, about 3 hours more than I had predicted. At one point, all I had left were these…

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and I considered stopping, because it was freakin’ late and I was tired and I’ve been fighting a hormone/weather headache on and off for 4 days and it was back (it’s back now too…making me think stress is the third arm of it, the part whacking at my brain right now). But I thought…fuck. I’m ALMOST FUCKING DONE. Just do it. If that doesn’t tell you more about who and how I am, I don’t know what will.

Cutting out tree parts is a pain in the ass, because they take a huge piece of fabric and don’t fit together well. It’s time-consuming…

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and hard to find big enough pieces of fabric in my stash. But I did it. Ninety-four fabrics later…

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There they all are. Heavy on the grays, strangely. So I sort of met my deadline on that and now need to cut them all out by Tuesday. Ha! I might need to revise that.

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I’ve started, sure, but I am so freakin’ buried in schoolwork right now. Trying to tread water, keep head up and breathing. Deep breaths. Meditating every day at the moment, which yes, I should be doing anyway, but the fabric choosing was taking care of that mindset until Friday. Friday things started to implode in my head. I’m overwhelmed. I need to step back and make my lists and deal with one day at a time. I can’t lump it all together and try to deal with it all at once. I can’t even go Big Picture at the moment.

I’m 37 hours into this quilt. Cutting out should take a while. Apparently on a similarly sized quilt, it took 13 hours to iron and 15 to trim the fabrics. If that’s realistic and I have 13 hours to go, I’m not going to get anywhere near finished until next weekend. Then I’ll start ironing. Maybe that’s my goal: to be ready to iron sometime next weekend. (Kathryn: no hiking, reduce social events as much as possible? Fuck.) I’m really busting my butt on this and at work and it’s starting to show. I’m really incredibly tense (chiropractor this week!) and I have no mental release really. I’m so deep into the have-to list that I cannot get focus. This week is ugly too. They all are. Who am I kidding?

Anyway. College stuff is paid. Boychild still doesn’t have a job. Girlchild is currently waiting for me to come help her paint her parking spot (she’s a senior), but I have to go grocery shopping first. I remembered to buy dog food yesterday, but forgot the cat food. Midnight broke into the food cupboard in protest and ripped open the other cat food bag, the one she doesn’t like. I regularly have to duct tape holes in cat food bags because of her. I still have one class of tests to grade and I have 5 kids who don’t really read or write English who honestly need a curriculum at about a kindergarten level, but with 7th grade content. I haven’t fully planned this week’s lesson yet, and I’m about to blow off any connection to technology, just to save my sanity.

But I finished the God-Damned Fucking Ironing.

I am the crazy-haired woman all in black who is standing in the middle of the produce section at the grocery store in meditation pose, eyes closed, deep breathing. You should just walk around me. Maybe give me a hug while you do it.


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