Not fast

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Restriction. Pressure.

Those words sound so negative. But if you’re pushing against something and suddenly take that thing away…well, we all know what happens.

I didn’t fall on my face, but a release of life pressures recently, combined with other transitions, left me in a bit of a free fall. Disoriented.

I was questioning what I was doing with this blog, for one thing. But also if I wanted to continue in the same direction with my artwork. Or do totally new work. Or get a different job entirely and just forget the whole thing.

None of this was coming from a place of sadness or defeat, but it was a bit uncomfortable. It was one of those times that I think of as a personal New Year’s, unconnected with the broader calendar: events conspire to make you take stock and reassess on a deeper level than usual.

I don’t know about you, but I often find this kind of questioning and discomfort comes right before it’s time to step it up a notch, take things to the next level. For that reason, I also think of it as a foundation check, making sure everything is solid before you build higher.

Every time it happens, I wish I had a way to skip to the end. Every time it happens, I wonder if there’s something I’m doing wrong. And every time it happens, I eventually remember what this is all about, let it be and listen, and emerge on the other side with a clearer sense of commitment to what I’m doing. Usually with more clarity about why I’m doing it.

Thankfully, that happened this time too, but while this bit of internal flailing was going on, I didn’t get a lot done in the studio. Instead I cleared things out and then wound up with some furniture I was trying to sell on Craig’s List parked in my painting area. Not helpful.

But finally I got my creative feet under me and got moving.

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Interestingly, once I got going again, the furniture sold too.

And, totally unconnected (I think), my daughter “adopted” two tiny snails from the park, her first pets.

So we now occasionally watch “snail TV” in the evening, which is surprisingly mesmerizing.

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It turns out sometimes slowness is as fascinating as speed.

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