Sunday, December 18, 2016

This holiday season, oy.

My "Red Scott Tartan" watercolor from a few years ago.
No new Christmas art this year, sorry.

This is a heavier post than I usually do, but I need to vent, so here goes.

The Holidays. (insert heavy sigh here) This year they are more challenging to get through than usual. 

The past several months have been difficult, with the last two being particularly hard. My Mom went into the hospital with 'aging issues' (sparing you the details), which was traumatic and exhausting. She is now mostly better, but I've had to arrange care for her, and that's been another huge emotional and physically draining experience. It's been a couple months of 'intense, concentrated, every day, too much pressure, too many heavy decisions, too many physical demands, too much of everything, all piled on top of each other, and on me alone' with no relief. If you've ever gone through this, you know what I'm talking about. If not, I sincerely hope you never have to.

So now, I, too, am having my own physical problems as a direct result of the stress and strain of it all. I think "nervous collapse" is a valid diagnosis, which has manifested itself as a pretty debilitating case of fibromyalgia-ish stiffness in various body parts. It started when my Mom started having health problems back in May, flaring up every time she had a new episode of something that required an extra doctor visit or blood test or more care on my part of some kind. As her condition intensified, so did mine. And now its 24/7, and I am officially handicapped. Add depression and wow! are we having fun yet?

I've always been fascinated by the whole mind/body connection. What I'm going through now is so clearly something that manifested itself because of stress. I've had some health issues in the past that thankfully finally healed or cleared up (and never returned) once I got to the bottom of what was bothering me, so with this, too, I'm hoping that getting my head screwed back on right ("its all going to be OK"), and some decent rest and relaxation (well, at least just a normal amount of 'every day stress' at least) will eventually put me right again. Meanwhile, a cane, Advil and lots of 'lie downs' are getting me through. Barely. In very slow motion.

But at least I'm not a Syrian refugee. Those poor Aleppo people, I can't even.

And then there's everything else to make you just curl up in a ball and not want to get up again (pretty much all the News, am I right?)

All the homeless people. They are everywhere, on every corner, sitting in fast food restaurant parking lots, lined up alongside buildings that give a bit of shelter, coming up to the road from where they've been sleeping in the bushes, wrapped in blankets, huddling in bus shelters, dragging their cobbled-together carts and wagons, heaped with their meager belongings, and the ones that have a dog omg its too heartbreaking. Now and then I give a few bucks to someone, but then agonize over giving to this poor soul and not that one over there, and how do you choose, and its just a drop in the bucket. 

Trump. I am soooooooooo disturbed by his becoming our next president. Read anything anyone critical or worried or disturbed by this has written and it will mirror my feelings, I'm sure. This impending sense of real doom is such a heavy weight. I just pray to who or whatever can help, to please help him, somehow, not completely lead us into WWIII or some such. And my heart goes out to all the people who are in the crosshairs of the xenophobic, homophobic, "fill in the blank"-phobic new administration and whatever it might dish out. 

But I believe in HOPE!
We have to, right? I'm hoping that all this gloom and doom will bring out the best in people, and maybe lead to a new, better, more caring and compassionate society. 
I'm also hoping that personally, as an artist, I can go deep and figure out what it is I'm really supposed to be drawing and painting. I'm waiting for some sign, some inspiration, and once my hands and wrists heal up a bit look forward to launching into some new projects.

So my prayer for the world this Christmas is that all the guardian angels, and healing angels, and unemployed angels looking for something to do, please pool your powers and sprinkle, or better yet, pour loads of grace and healing and mercy and hope on all of us here on Earth, and on poor Earth herself. Keep us all going, and going in the right direction. Away from the darkness. Away from disease and hate and sadness and gloom and doom. Into a new and better and lovely future full of light and nice things. Please.

Wishing Peace and Joy and Good Health to all of you for the holiday and new year and beyond, infinity.


Peggy Stermer-Cox said...

Hi Paula,

You have my warmest regards. I hope you get rest and your strength back soon. Best wishes to you and your Mom!

Melissa B. Tubbs said...

Here's to a better year all around. Glad your mother is doing better. Hope you are much better very soon.

Elizabeth O Dulemba said...

Paula, I'm so sorry you and your mom are having such a tough time. Although it's clear you do believe in HOPE - there's so much of it in your post. Wishing you all that you wish for and more for 2017. I'm right there with you on all of it. Hugs, hugs, e

Feathers said...

I totally understand, (been there, and back again)Stress does some nasty things when we're not even thinking about it! My best to you, that you are able to get beyond the angst and able to breathe easier again soon. You have more company than you can imagine. Hugs to you and your Mom.-Anita.

3rdborn survivor said...

Just catchin' your site as I am trying to paint fine line graduated circle art on the wall. Did not learn anything that contributes to my search, though, your severe depression and anger over Donald Trump's win did prevail as THEE message.

We who elected him felt the exact way--perhaps even with greater anger and trembling at the election of Hussein Obama--TWO TIMES SELF-ELECTED at that. However, the grand difference between Obama's and Trump's voters and presidencies is that we still supported Hussein O and did not name call nor initiate countless actions against him, nor allowed our Republican elected to block and withhold any and all support. And your side is doing all of that with impunity regardless of what the American people need and desire. Perhaps a bit of respect, maturity, and support could be considered FOR THE SAKE OF OUR COUNTRY very very soon.

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