Friday, November 30, 2012

Art Blog: My New Normal - Part 1

OK. Here is a start. I have so much to write. I have so much to tell. Some of it is almost unbelievable unless you really believe in spirits and higher powers. I will get to that later. In the meantime I have to tell you all the beginnings. I quit the job I had for over 18 years this past January. It was a weird, insane moment. I just had to do it. Despite loving this job for years, it had become a nightmare for me. It was so horrible, I would cry when I got home from work. I knew I had to do something to survive. So I quit.

Now what??? I spent the next few months wondering, plotting, and searching. I had bad feelings about teaching. I thought I hated it. I even told my friends, I will never teach again. This is how crazy I got during the past year. I just wanted to alleviate the emotional pain. After looking for some kind of non-teaching jobs for weeks and months, I printed out this note to myself.

I wasn't really sure what it meant; I just had a feeling. I just knew, I had to post it right in front of my face. I taped it to the window next to my computer. I looked at it every day as I looked for jobs. God is waiting? God is waiting for what? I kept asking myself that question, but held this sign with high regard. Then things started to happen. Some things were horrible. Now, I know they were the antithesis of what I was supposed to do. I had to experience what I DIDN'T want in order to understand what I did want. I get it now. As I moped around in my studio, I realized I missed teaching. I want my art room back. I wanted a place to call my own and do what I do best.
As soon as I got done thinking that thought, I got a phone call. I will write a full blog post about this soon. At that moment, it was as if God said "OK. That's all I needed." Long story short, I got hired to teach art and technology at a very cool place. I have spent the last four weeks being crazy frantic. I realized today, I want things to be back to the way I had built up over the years on my last job. I had created such a great art room and program. I want that NOW. However, I realize I have to give it time. In fact, that is part of the joy. Building a new program as God smiles down. God waited and I was ready. :-)


A new home.
A new normal.
I am not sure I will last another 18 years here. In fact, it is unlikely. However, I will give it my best shot. We will see. In the meantime, I am a happy teaching artist. I was sent here. I know it for sure. Stay tuned for the explanation. There is much more to this story and it will curl your toes.
Now, I am feeling out the NEW NORMAL.
BELIEVE.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Art Blog: EMPATHY

I am a huge LBGT supporter. I have always felt some kind of weird kinship and empathy for the Gay community. Maybe it is because I am an artist. There are so many gay artists. I have always been surrounded. I relate to them. Even though I am heterosexual, I feel some kind of similar spirit. I too feel like an outcast. I have never fit into our society in the traditional way. For some reason, I have been thinking about the movie "Longtime Companion" all day today. I remember the exact time I saw this film. I was teaching at a college. I had a morning class and an evening class. There was always a gap for me to go do something in the afternoon. One day in 1990, a local art movie theater was showing the movie "Longtime Companion". It was a film about the AIDS epidemic and a group of gay men in NY. I entered the theater early. I went straight down to the front row. I always sit right up front because it is never crowded.
The theater started to fill up and I noticed even the front row was getting full. Drag queens sat on either side of me. I turned around to look at the audience behind me. I was the only female in the theater. The movie started. We all watched the story unfold. It was funny, loving, and true. The end is tragic and sad. As the credits rolled, I lost it. I started to sob LOUD. With my head in my hands, I cried full on into my lap. The drag queens on each side of me grabbed me and said "It is OK honey. It is OK"! I have always remembered their kindness and sincerity. Maybe this is why I am a LGBT supporter.
We both have empathy.