Category Archives: Health

Melding two groovy mediums

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I’ve come to a place in my artistic life where I need to jerk myself away from the traps of technology and just shutter down for a bit.

My son visited me a few weeks ago. He came to spend time with his mother and to kiss his babies goodbye. See, for quite a few years he has been collecting some rather impressive vinyl. If I had appreciated them like he does I would not have asked him to get them out of my house. He gave them snuggles and then sold them all before heading back to Calgary. It was very hard on him. But it took spending several days listening to them with him to really get it. THIS SHIT IS GOOD. And his eclectic variety in music still makes me shake my head.

After he left to go home to his beautiful wife, my two sisters, the oldest and the youngest, descended upon my home to visit me and my mother who lives one floor above me. She has dementia so I am working hard to give her as much independence as she can have for as long as she can have it. That was a beautiful weekend and I loved the true feeling of family that I came away with.

This is week one of nobody in my home and I thought for sure I would dive into the studio and start the next project. My team, The Otown Bombers, had completed a yarnbombing of an entire park three weeks ago. I am proud to say we broke a record with this one. No media coverage this time, but I did post our own signs requesting that, while we know our stuff is awesome, could you possibly leave it for two weeks before you steal it so that the whole community can enjoy our art form. I also posted a Thank You at the four corners of the park to the Algonquin for the use of their land. It was a good bomb.

But I did not dive into a new project, I ignored the studio for two days but finally went in with the intention of tidying it as it had become a dumping ground. That done, you would think I would be inspired to start a new creation right? With a pinch of shame I say I was not inspired. I dragged my ass for 5 days more.

Tonight, as I walked down the hallway I caught myself peeking into the studio. I walked back to the living room and sat my big ass on the couch to watch tv. After 30 minutes of that felt uneasy. I went past the studio again and said to myself, “Don’t go in there.” Then I heard myself ask myself, ” What are you afraid of?” And my damn self replied, “If I go in I may never want to come out.”

This is the reason my life feels so mundane lately. I’m not feeding my soul, my calling, my intelligence and passion. I’m stuffing it with digital, meaningless and utterly consuming techgarbage. TV, Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, asscheck, spitneck, when the heck this shit gonna let me alone! Realistically, I had to ask my own self, ” when am I going to walk away?”

That would be today. I am challenging myself to pay attention to the artist that I am. Realistically I know in this day and age and my level of discipline, that I cannot walk away permanently. I am connected to a lot of special people through technology that I otherwise wouldn’t have the resources or energy to stay connected to people I love.

So, what am I willing to do? Well, sitting here listening to my son’s Rolling Stones, Black and Blue, I am willing to trade one noise for another. I will be replacing the the hum of the internet for the scratchy whispers of all the vinyl in my possesion and if I run out, I’ll just buy some more and learn to appreciate the passion of collecting music like my son. I challenge myself to leave my tv off for 30 days. No more News, Netflix, Crave etc. that keep me bound to a big screened idiot box. I will refrain from social media. I will post nothing. If  in an urgent moment, only private messages to save a life or help someone. I can do anything else I chose while listening to music. I am allowed to listen to music online but no videos.

Now, that I’m blogging about this is kinda oxymoronic,  yes?  Ummm yeah, and it will be my last public post for 30 days beginning June 1st. My birthday falls within the 30 day challenge but if I don’t do it now I know I never will.

You ever have one of those moments where the idea is larger than you logic or fear? This is one of mine.

I hope this made some sense to fellow creatives who get or are snarled in the morass of THE MUNDANE. It happens more often than our free frolic but I do hope this is a way for me to push myself past the swamp and onto the beach.

 

Anxiously Seeking Significance

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andy-goldsworthy-2art by Andy Goldsworthy

 

I find my life has become mundane. Where my most exciting moments are about my crazy cat or my aging mother. I don’t often talk about the office because, let’s face it, it’s just another office. I love the people I work with I really do. If I had a magic wand I would be making a living in art. I just haven’t had the balls to do that yet.

I have this empty space in my mind, heart and soul right now and I am looking for something significant to fill it up with. I’m still single so it could be that I’m seeking companionship. I’ve really been neglecting my studio so maybe I need to immerse myself for an entire week. I miss my son but I won’t see him for quite some time yet. I’ve started working on my health and have lost 8 pounds in 4 weeks. All of these things are not that inspiring to me. There is something else missing.

I need a cause, perhaps a higher purpose. I need some depth in my life because at the moment I feel I could be blown away by the slightest breeze. I don’t feel like I am contributing anything meaningful.

This void, this void, what is this void?

Taming another beast

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Mondo-Where-the-Wild-Things-Are-Ken-Taylor-Poster-Regular-2

As many of you already know and for those who don’t, I quit smoking a few years back. December 8, 2010 to be exact. It was a birthday present to my son who begged me for years to quit. In December I will have been smoke free for four years. In those four years I have been through my mother moving in with me, tons of stress at work and my son getting married and leaving the province. As you can see, it’s been a chaotic four years. But I managed to keep myself from reaching for my bestest friend, the cigarette. I feel so much better lung wise but I’ve gained a ton of weight and that is the next beast to tame.

Three weeks ago I signed up for Sparkpeople.com. My friend Mimma turned me onto this amazing website that supports a healthy lifestyle FOR FREE! I am committed to loosing weight but I am not committed to spending a load of money to do so. I’m not even joining a gym this time. I know I can accomplish this goal with only minor expenses such as higher food bills (quality costs more) and perhaps a scale and some weights. That is all I am putting out. I have a bike and two feet that can do the rest.

It’s pretty ironic that I quit smoking to save my life. I wanted to breath better and stop coughing. Here’s the ironic part, now I cough because of acid reflux and I breath heavy because I’m obese. Helluva trade off there isn’t it? Well, NO MORE. I’m taking my life in my hands once more and the next health problem I want to have is muscle strain or exhaustion from a marathon or ..well, you get the point.

Which brings me to my art. It’s suffering because I’m taking so long adjusting to this new lifestyle. I’m trying to find the balance of workouts, work, chores and life in general. I work out before I make dinner but I’ve also promised my sister that I would start eating my dinner earlier than 8pm so I’m finding a conflict here. I think the sacrifice I’m going to have to make is getting up a half hour earlier and working out before breakfast. UGH…..I’ve actually never done this in my life so it might be a new GREAT HABIT to develop. That way I can take off from work to the studio and not have to worry about working out. I just need to get home at a decent hour and/or pack a dinner for the studio while I paint. Oh, and I’m also getting in a second workout by biking to and from the studio and climbing five flights of stairs to get to my studio. Ya! That sounds doable right?

One thing about healthy eating…it takes a lot of prep! So, Sunday afternoons, after my weekly group sesh with the O-Town Bombers, will be committed to prepping food for the week. This means more menu planning etc.

It’s more than just dieting, I am changing my entire lifestyle. I want to live to see my grandchild and maybe even a great grandchild or two. I want to be able to run, jump and skip like I did 10 years ago. I want to have a great sex life again, something that is very difficult when you can’t  bend for a friend. I tried Pilates last night and was horrified how locked up my body is by all this fat. I used to be able to sit in the lotus position, now I look like a lotus pad!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not bitter or pointing the finger of blame at anyone but myself. I got me into this and I can get me out. I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been in my life. I’m not miserable but I am lonely. I haven’t felt good about myself for years so I haven’t even dated in the past three years. I don’t want to get into a position and not be able to get out of it, literally. I don’t like my body like this. I know what I have to do and I am clearly on the right path to getting er done! With Mimma and Sparkpeople I know I can nail this demon too.

And when I am at a healthy weight and feeling good….O-Town boys better get to steppin cuz I just might morph into a little cougar! meow!