I like this weeks sunday scribbling because just seeing or hearing the word quitting brings up waves of emotions. Freedom. Peace. Stress. Strain. Pain. Giving in. Giving up. Movement.
I've quit my share of jobs. I've walked out during breaks. I've given notice. I've just not shown up. This being all during my teens and twenties. When in the mid 80's I started my massage business and worked for no one but me, I stayed with it for almost two decades. It was the pain of repetitive motion that finally pushed me to quit. How odd that it didn't seem at the time like something I would have done [quitting] without being forced to but in retrospect I see how ready, how overdue I was for quitting.
And then dear readers, most of you know I then quit my life in Arizona, hit the road and camped, travelled around. I worked a bit more at massage but always quit, pain being a big reason but I was done giving. I finally felt I had given enough. I was tired of trying to make other people feel better. It was time for me to just give to me. My life. My self.
So I ended up staying in Vermont. The art started pouring out of me. And yet many times I wanted to quit only because I didn't see how I could keep going on financially, physically, emotionally and so on. But I didn't quit because I felt as if the trail behind me, the ground behind me was literally disappearing after each step and I couldn't go back. I had to move forward. And even though it felt/feels hard, even though I am sometimes like a battery operated toy that has hit a wall and is moving but not going anywhere, I wont quit. Not until or unless I understand what, if anything, else I am to go towards.
I guess I am learning to respect the process and the synchronicity of life. I had to get a job this year and I've hated it. I haven't quit yet because I need the money and since it really doesn't take much right now to get by I don't have to work much. It's still slow and I haven't worked more than a few days the last two months. Somehow I sell just enough art to make it and leave those credit cards alone. In my mind I have quit the job, I don't see myself working 6-7 days again like I did when it was busy. I try to keep focused on art and not let the energy that it takes to be in that place, get ignored.
There have also been behaviors I've quit. People I've quit. Lifestyles I've quit. Quitting sounds negative, we are told to never give up, don't stop at nothing, don't quit! And I guess I have that attitude about art even though I'm going to contradict myself and say quitting is usually a positive thing. I don't think you should push yourself to the limit and mow down every obstacle. You can still get what you want in life, sometimes, by quitting the way you are going about going after it and trying something else. Duh. Easier said than done. Tell me that when I'm hell bent on fixing something on my computer and sit here for days and days, my eyeballs red and watery, panting like a rabid animal. Tell me that when I've made a shit load of art and have no new places to show it. Endless memories in my mind of pure tenacity superseding reason. It is exhausting and uses up more resources than it is probably worth in the long run.
So. I guess I have no point. It always just boils down to trying to be in the moment. Letting the babbling brook of a brain dissipate. Trying not to get too far ahead of yourself. Remembering now is all you have so try to be in that moment and enjoy it. Keep following inclinations, hopes, dreams and heart. Quitting to me kind of equals freedom. You quit something when you have had enough and it isn't working for you. You move on. Find another route. Learn. Live.