War is ComingToday’s art is another gluebook page. I’ve been doing pages in an old Thesaurus since 2005. It’s starting to get nice and full.

For the past couple of months, I’ve been experiencing something that I’ve christened “standing still”, because it is the polar opposite of moving forward. Or moving in any direction, really. It’s happening in my creative life, but also in my everyday life. And I don’t know how to get past it.

I thought about this situation a lot over the weekend, as I watched my Kickstarter campaign inch closer and closer to its first goal. I haven’t been able to make myself go to my local art group meetings since, oh, November. I haven’t really done much yard work this year. Even though I can now once again lift the 40lb. bags of soil amendments I need to feed the garden, I haven’t planted any vegetables. I’m not making an effort to meet up with friends. I’m not going out much at all—but I’m also not doing much at home.

At first, I thought this might be just a big, fat, post-surgical depression. I’m not really prone to depression at all. I’m more of a throw myself into something and get over it kind of girl. Now, I just think I’m going through a period of just plain dealing with everything that’s happened in the last six months, since I couldn’t really take the time to think about it while it was happening. The whole medical disaster was sort of a three month whirlwind, followed by several months of just trying to get my body to do all the things I need to do to make my life run. Any extra time was spend juggling money things, or making work decisions, and just trying to keep all the bills paid and the phone quiet.

So, here I am. And maybe I’m just taking a little time to freak the hell out. Maybe what I’m experiencing is more like absolute terror than depression. Because I don’t feel down. I just feel overwhelmed.

Meanwhile, I have to force myself to get up out of this chair, get off the computer, and do things like put the trash out, or mow the backyard. Even on days when I’m cutting myself some slack, and not doing any work, it’s hard to make myself go into my work room and do anything. Last week, I gave it a try, and ended up throwing three small canvas panels that I started weeks ago into the trash, because I just couldn’t get any of them to look right.

But then, there was this morning. I really did get off the computer by 10, and go put the trash out, and tie up some brush I cut back, and nibbled around the edges of a big patch of weeds that’s emerged from lack of weekly attention to such things. I was only out there an hour or two before the ridiculous heat drove me back inside, but still—I feel good. Tired and hot, but good. I forget that when I’m stuck in this chair, unable to move, dreading the work in front of me. I have a big crazy garden that people slow down to stare at because I like working outside.

Now, if I could just get some tomatoes planted…