I’m awash in great ideas. In dreams. In stories. In paintings. I’m awash in emotion. I live in a drowning sea of joy and sorrow and fear and triumph. In friendship and loneliness.

Fiona is a part of all of this. She and I have been so tightly together that the act of having her away from me has forced growing pains. I feel adrift. She is starting the inevitable process of moving away from me that will end in her leaving home and living a life out of my sight. An invisible life (at least to me) that shapes her and changes her and makes her into who she is. Who she will be.

Such a terrifying lack of control. She’s already made friends whose names I’ve had to learn. Tricks and songs that she’s taught me. Games of which I know neither the rules nor the goals. She knows things that I haven’t taught her.

At the same time, there is the terrifying, exhilarating sensation of being just me. For the first time in years I’m having brief patches of time where I’m learning not to have one ear listening for trouble or pain or need. I’m disconnecting. Decompressing. Relaxing.

And it’s waking me back up. Which is good.

And bad.

I find myself restless. I find myself frustrated when I have to stop creating and go back to being mommy. Not because I don’t want to be mommy, but because to slow down a creative idea is to risk it being derailed.

I find myself raging against housework.

I find myself torn between frustration at spending time on any activity because I want to spend time on all of them. I feel guilty for doing those things that I take joy in but find impossible when she’s home while she’s at preschool and thus making it so I have to do things like housework when she’s home. I feel guilty for the anger that guilt makes me feel. I am a person. I have the right to do things that make me happy.

And I paint. And I paint. And I paint.

It’s an obsession. It’s a passion. It’s like the silken soft gel of the paint transforms into pure emotion to be petted and pulled and lathed onto the canvas until a thought or a feeling has broken free of me to live on it’s own.

So, what was the point of all this? I’ve been feeling too guilty to write this blog when Fiona is home and awake and I’ve been to obsessed with the siren call of colors when she isn’t.

If you miss me, if you wonder where I went, don’t worry. It’s a combination of growing pains, mommy guilt and a frantic obsession with paint.

My two most recent pieces.

The Winter Tree. 2ft x 3ft

The Always Tree. 30″ x 40″

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3 thoughts on “

  1. Hey Lady, I know what you mean, I am 3 posts behind in my poor blog as well.
    I love your recent work. And I cannot wait to send you a picture of your “Flock Politics” as it hangs on my wall. But first we must get it hung.
    Congratulations and commisserations on “waking up” and as always *big squishy hugs* Love you.

  2. I love your beautiful paintings! Amazing! Are you selling these on your etsy shop? Oh, and I think everything you’re feeling is completely normal, hang in there.

  3. I’m sad that you’re struggling, but glad that you’re finally getting some “me time.” Life is full of up and down moments, but that’s what makes it interesting.

    My mom went through a similar stage when we were growing up…it was a little different because of us being home schooled, but she still went through it. Being a twin, my brother and I always had a playmate so right around the age of three or four, we started really playing together on our own and not needing mom as much. It was also around that age that our family grew from being just my mom, brother, and I to including my dad (step-dad). So she was struggling with all the changes and not being depended on as much by my brother and I and actually having time to pick up her hobbies again. She felt a little guilty too about doing hobbies again while still having a marriage and housework and still having the time to be a mom to us.

    Her way of dealing with it was to make a rough schedule of sorts. My brother and I tended to find time naturally during the morning that we could entertain ourselves really well and then we’d get bored in the afternoon, so she worked within that and set up a rough schedule something like this:

    – Wake-up, snuggle time, get ready, breakfast = 7 to 9
    – Kids playtime and mom hobby time = 9 to 12
    – Lunch time
    – School work, housework, TV education shows, or playtime with mom = 1 to 5
    – Dinner and family time = 5 to 7
    – Kid’s bedtime = 7
    – Housework, date time, or personal time = 8 to 11

    She also eventually involved my brother and I in the housework. She taught us how to fold the laundry, dust, and sweep by the age of three. She also started teaching us how to vacuum and help with the dishes between the age of four and five. And by six, she had us helping with sorting laundry and using the washer and dryer. We learned really young and early on how to do these chores and she balanced them out by rotating them between her and us…that way at least every other time the housework got done thoroughly by her. She said it was hard to teach us that young, because my brother especially was full of energy and questions, but it was worth it. It give her time with us while at the same time teaching us how to help out. And within a year of her starting this we really were able to help out with the basic cleaning and help free up a little more of her time. Also, interesting fact, she did this method with my brother and I, but with my little sisters they didn’t start learning the chore process until around 6 or 7. The house always stayed pretty clean and in order when my brother and I were there because we could do stuff without asking questions, but after we moved out my sisters weren’t as good at keeping things clean on their own. They still have a lot of questions on the basic how-to’s versus my brother and I.

Talk to me, Baby!

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