I Slipped Away*

Every Sunday, I make a list of all the stuff that needs to be done to get me through the week: lunches, dinners, sometimes even breakfasts when I feel like I need control of that (this week? Yup.). Then there’s the stuff I have to prep for school: update the website, send out a parent email (those haven’t started yet), prep for the week, write warmups etc. I grade papers. Yesterday I even set up the gradebook, because that’s a thing. I grocery shop and run errands if I need to. Laundry. And then, sometime usually after dinner, I get to do what I want. It depends on how efficient I was during the rest of the day. Certainly I woke up yesterday with all of it weighing on me, and then I tried to book through as much of it as possible. I’m sure I forgot something, though.

But I did get to the cutting stage last night. I had to tire the puppy out first, so he wouldn’t try to help…

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I threw all the balls for him for a long time.

All the stuff I’d ironed last, all the tiny stuff in the brain cloud above her head, had to be cut out first. I don’t even cut out the tiniest of them, not until I’m ready to iron. But they were all small anyway.

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Doesn’t look like much, but it was about 150 pieces.

It got easier after that, bigger pieces that didn’t require tiny scissors…then medium-sized pieces that are the meat of the thing.

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I got through a good chunk of them, almost 3 hours of cutting, and surprisingly, my hand doesn’t hurt today. But there’s still a ton left. I didn’t even get to the flesh pieces. They’re all piled in the box in backwards order of when I ironed them. So all those inner body pieces, the hearts and lungs, that’s what I’m cutting out now. I’m always amazed that I can look at a little piece as I’m cutting it and know what it is…because they don’t really usually look like anything. But I drew that piece. And then I traced that piece. And then I cut it out of Wonder Under and ironed it to fabric, and now I’m cutting it out again. Somewhere my brain has an inventory of all those pieces, and it knows what each one is. Which explains why I can’t remember anything else some days.

I keep staring at the calendar and then the due dates, and getting a little hyperventilaty. No, that’s not a word. But it should be.

I think I can finish it, but I’m not sure. And there are two standing right on top of it when I finish.

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I didn’t mean to have so many due dates on top of each other. I’ve already ditched another one and revised one of the ones I can’t ditch. But that one got doubled up when I wasn’t looking. Long story. A collaboration I need to get started on…and then one I’m going to simplify…which is what this pre-drawing is for.

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I’m going to draw it bigger, but then I think I’m going to be taking some short cuts. Using a real sheet. Not quilting it maybe. I can quilt it later, but it doesn’t necessarily need to be quilted for this show. I need an old sheet first though. Thrift shop. No pattern, solid color, gray, blue, green, but muted. I think.

Anyway. The brain is working on it. The rest of the brain needs to get to school and figure out the teaching part. Which includes a 2-hour staff meeting after school. I wish they’d figure out that the second hour is a waste of time, because we are all completely checked out. I guess I can grade stuff. Then maybe I won’t have to do that tonight at home. Plan.

*Boston, More Than a Feeling (I never knew the words to this one…always thought it was “I see my derriere walking away.” Which makes no fucking sense, I know. But whatever.)

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