And the world keeps spinning . . .
When I decided (realized) that I have to create all 972 pieces of this project before releasing it – in order to be fair to the work – I cried.
I’m afraid of starving in the meantime.
My feet, my knees, my shoulders hurt.
I knew I had to trick myself to start.
I am grateful.
I cried because this is all I can do.
I can do this.
I am doing this.
This is a long project. It is not something I’m able to do over a weekend – or – even something I will be able to work on every day (my body is not having it). It’s going to take many months, if not years.
There’s still more wood to harvest and reclaim.
I’m using oil paint. The paint slows the process massively. I like the way oil looks and feels.
On the other hand, I think the slowing down – the slowness – of this project is good. There is only so much I can do in a day visually / physically. I have over 500 pieces to cut and almost 900 to sand still.
Sometimes balance feels flimsy, but I manage it.
Sometimes I just have to stop and breathe. And wait.
I am moving through and beyond fear. Gradually.
I’m doing it. I’m taking some action every day – even if it is not directly the work. I’m in the beginning of the middle beginning of the work. And I hope by spring I’ll be in the middle beginning or in the middle of the middle.
My mom is slowly dying. Slowness is where it is at for me now. Maybe I can finish this work before she dies. Or maybe I can’t.
I feel like so much of the slowness is good for me as I process my life’s memories, traumas, the good times, my spirituality, my spiritual/emotional connection to my body.
I want to feel.
I want to be useful.
I want to inspire.
I want to sing.
Grief is slow.
This idea began after my sister died, and after a significant relationship faded.
The stars – they spun around in my head for seven years before I got to it.
I’ve had fits and starts, but I really got with it – got my hands dirty – while caregiving for my mom.
Walking, feeling sadness, rage, hopelessness – I started collecting the wood. I started collecting the wood on my walks. If I could only focus for 45 minutes at a time, I could start something in those periods.
Large paintings weren’t happening, couldn’t be happening. These small, touchable, hold-able objects, these could be created one step – one minute – at a time.
These pieces represent a passage toward orphan-hood, in a way, and at the same time ultimate connection with something far bigger than myself.
When I take the time to stop and look my mother in the eyes; she looks back at me with pure wonder. It’s those moments when I feel time and space expanding to encompass everything. So big, so large, they disappear and all that’s left are stars.
The tiny light we all carry.
February 23, 2023
Top Image – Star Kaleidoscope by Graham Parker