No post title. This is because I’m likely to go a little stream of consciousness here and to consider a title for that is a bit silly right now.
I’m having a low day. This is a day built on many little disruptions, disappointments, and physical pain over the past week or so. The physical pain is due to a three and a half week old injury sustained by walking our enormous hound dog. I’ll talk about that first.
Jasper, our loveable dog, is too powerful for me. I love him dearly, but he has injured me several times over with his tendency to lunge for something exciting when I have him on a lead for walk time. He has, in the past and more than once, sent me to my knees resulting in blood and shredded flesh. Thankfully, he seems mostly trained out of that crazy behaviour, but there have still been times in recent months where the only way I can avoid being pulled down is to voluntarily sit down and force myself into a better position of stability and weight. I turn myself into a lead-holding human boulder and he rushes and jumps and acts like an idiot with his excitement. I get a dirty bum, but at least I’m not bleeding.
A few weeks ago, this dog I love darted to the end of his lead so hard that my shoulder suffered damage. I didn’t think much of it at the time, just scolded him, regained control, and walked home with “Ow, that hurt” on my tongue (and maybe a few swear words too). In my sleep that night I raised my left arm above my head and shrieked out in pain. This pain has subsided a little since then, but I have been suffering a range of sensations from normal to discomfort to stabbing I-want-to-vomit levels of hurt. I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow to see what can be done.
This injury is disrupting my sleep, my work, and my exercise (and training for Tough Mudder). It’s getting me down. So are a few other things…
I am creating the best art work of my life. Yes, that’s the good part. I’m hugely behind in marketing, selling, and recording (spreadsheets, photographing, scanning). This is all part of my job, and I’m struggling to keep up both aspects – the creative and the administrative/business. I have made some really good contacts recently and the likelihood of my work showing in a couple of galleries within the next year is promising. This is what I want, and yet, the admin/biz end of things terrifies me. I am certain I am not the only artist who struggles with this. It’s just one more thing weighing me down at the moment. I am always playing catch up. I never feel in control of what I’m doing with my job. The art? Yes, I’m doing great work there and feel very confident with my output. The business? I am constantly fighting to put scraps of money into my bank account and never managing to update my website or promote myself properly. I am my own worst enemy and critic, I know. I also know what I’m shit at…
I have many satellite projects (including book writing) that are going nowhere due to my business anxiety. I have some demons to conquer and I know only I can conquer them. This doesn’t really help the anxiety, as you can imagine.
Disruptions to routine have ganged up on me. Appointments and similar have been changing and changing again all week. Not helping. I also had a let-down last Saturday which has affected me more than I admitted (to even myself).
I’m sitting on the floor of my office (I don’t use chairs anymore – all stand up desks) with my laptop and feel the slight crust of dried tears on my cheeks. I’m going to wrap this post with some positive stuff for my own benefit. A reminder.
My work is good. I believe in and am inspired by my own art. This has never happened to me before this last year or two, and the discipline I need to create regularly is in place. I have myself to thank for that and it feels pretty good.
Outside of my shoulder pain, I am healthy.
Home life is stable right now. I have good people in my life. I am not alone.
That’s about it really. I am emotionally and mentally drained today and so I’m wrapping this post. I’m going to try to ignore the anxieties of feeling overwhelmed by the post-production workload of being an artist (website, promo, recording etc.), and attempt to ignore the pain in my body. I’ve been invited to go to the pub with Neil and Pete, and so that’s what I’m going to do this evening. A pint of cider and good conversation await. I don’t feel particularly social, but these two guys usually know how to help me out of a funk, so I try to listen to their suggestions.