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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

things are different now

Is anyone else out there feeling... different these days? Maybe it's because spring is getting ready to burst free of the mud outside my door, or because we're getting ready to burst free of Taos. Maybe it's because Lauren is graduating from college in a few weeks... my baby... Or maybe it's the war, or multiple "Wars on Whatever" we keep declaring on everything from people who are not "us" to hunger and poverty and disease. I wonder why we don't simply declare Peace on Everything and settle down for a nice party together. But aside from all that, there's a constant flow of "woo-woo" information coming in, telling those of us who listen that way, that the times they are, indeed, a-changing.

I know I am. Oh yeah, it could be that I'm 50 and doing the menopause dance. But it doesn't hurt. In fact, I'm finding all that quite clarifying in certain areas of my life. My tolerance for drama and bullshit is almost gone completely. My awareness of violence is heightened to a level of overload. And my ability to do the same old things for the same old reasons is slip sliding away.

Rick and I have a new morning practice, replacing the old routine of getting up, making coffee-tea-toast, and then sitting around for an hour or more, "easing" into the day. That was his style, 15 years ago, and being 15 years younger, I went along with it, to be nice and all. I'm not so nice now. Or maybe "nice" is just another word for "dishonest". When Rick was in Oregon for a week, I managed my time totally differently. The flow was perfect, and I drifted through the days, happily doing all the things I wanted to do. Once he got home, it was clearly time for a change. Wonderful Human that he is, he readily agreed, and we both wondered how we'd let ourselves go so long on auto-pilot. Time to wake up!

Now we get up, make our beverages of choice, and go to different parts of the house with our notebooks, to write. Today I sat in the kitchen with a cup of green mint tea and a big juicy slab of pineapple upside-down cake. (Thank you Deborah! Yum!) I wrote for an hour, and have no idea if anything I ever write in these mornings will ever go beyond the notebook. No promises. No goals. I'm just following the urge to write like a leaf floating down the Rio.

There are other things tugging at my sleeve for attention now too. Like the violin and knitting. I'm struggling with both, as well as the writing, but it doesn't really matter, and it doesn't really bother me. A Leaf on the Rio, that's my main "goal". It even sounds like the title of a book, but for now, it's just how I want my days to go. Even beadmaking has become something of a struggle. Something happened only yesterday that made me smack myself on the head and go, "what are you thinking?"

I was looking through all of my bead photos from 2007, finding favorites to send to someone who wants to use them for publication. There are hundreds and hundreds of beads in that file, and all of them are nice... Nice and polite. Nice and pretty. Nice and useful. And sometimes, "nice" as in "dishonest". It struck me that I've somehow wandered into a mindless land of making beads, making beads, making beads because I think someone will buy them. And that old time-tested way of making beads to make a living isn't working anymore. Sales are down, and I'm unhappy. OhMyDog! I have to change something... now!

I spent half the day yesterday looking through those photos, and finally came up with a dozen beads I was really truly proud of. And the sky cleared, and the sun got warmer, and I promised myself right then and there to go back to making beads from my heart - at least most of the time. Not everything has changed... I still make all the money we live on, and like I've said for years --- A girl's gotta make a living. But I can be sure of one thing. There will be far fewer making a living beads, and more beads made for the love of making them. People will buy them or not. That's not my concern. Not anymore. Things are different now.


jo said...

Right on sista!Kim, 50 has been so liberating for me- enjoy the changes ~ life is just getting better and better.
I look at it like the first half of my life was doing "it" the way it should be done. This half is for me!
You too. Enjoy the ride.
woo hoo.

Francoise said...

Right on indeed...! Life is too short to let time just fly by. Let's make the most out of it, I'm at that stage too: getting rid of silly habits, avoiding boring stuff and people, concentrating on what I really want to do when I grow up -- which is right now! And good things bring other good things, and so on. ;+)

Angela said...

I know what you mean about being honest when you are creating something. I also torch, and am a member of a co-op gallery. I've spent a lot of time thinking about how to be honest with my own creations over the past winter. (I haven't torched much, my garage isn't heated. Plus, I work full time and have three kids to drive everywhere when I get home from work.)
Got to go now, and take one to the Train to Boston with her boyfriend....
But I completely understand the mental struggle involved in becoming more honest in your work....

Amy K said...

Kim, I have one of your beads (a small one with CZs, in fire colors- yum) from a Bead & Button show years ago. I lurve it. Anyway, I think a lot of glass artists aren't 'honest' with their art at the torch because they're afraid people won't... GET it. I'm trying more and more to do that, be honest, and sometimes it's just scary to put your honesty out there for people to see! :) Good luck!

Sweetwater Designs said...

Yep..theres definitely something in the air. Not so sure its Spring though, we got 2 inches of snow overnight. Always love to hear your thoughts Kim, as well as your glass. ♥