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often i am aware that i am not like most people.  we are and we arent.  right?  specifically...i never married.  never had kids.  dont have pets.  haven't held a 'real job' for any length of time as i worked for myself basically since 1987 give or take sporadic shit jobs i've taken to make ends meet while being an artist these last 7 years.

i spend my days looking for scrap.  riding my bike and stopping at the drop of a dime to get that little dirty crusty lug nut or washer in the crack of a parking lot driveway.  digging thru dumpsters at night to pull out odd shaped boxes to ship my flowers or other odd art pieces.  digging thru piles of heavy metal to find the perfect 'thing'.  spending hours online promoting etsy shops (number three shop just got up this weekend and its my supply/industrial decor shop)

since tod left 2 months ago my life is even more cut off and strange.  he and i talk on the phone...keeping in mind we aren't some troubled couple that had a tumultuous relationship, in fact our last 5 years together were spent as platonic friends, buddies...compadres.  so his leaving had more to do with his needing to find HIS self and life and fulfill his needs, as friends we miss each other.  we probably wouldn't bode well living together again unless we had our own 'floors' and separate spaces.  but we do miss each other as friends/people/art cohorts.  so i continue to be alone.  it is rare i spend time with anyone.  i dont get their lives and they dont get mine.  we dont have time for each other me and these people i'm meeting.  i dont really care about their kids/family life.  i dont really care about much but art.  movies.  books.  i dont eat out cuz i can buy what i want and make it last longer.  even if i weren't poor, eating out just doesnt thrill me.

i'm more happy when i live a simple life.  i'm not a self sustainable type.  i dont like gardens and if i had my own plot of land i would rather find a way to grow meat products than green vegetable thingies.  i get more excited by a month of living in utter hot sweaty conditions and saving $50 or more in my electric bill than if you just gave me the $50.

i've been more quiet lately.  put myself on a facebook profile sabbatical as i found i couldn't even stand to read about everyone's 'doings' for the summer.  i can't keep taking all of it in.  all this stuff everyone does.  i love my facebook friends.  my online friends.  but i'm in this dire straits of sorts financially and existentially and its just too much.  my head explodes with rage or confusion reading things that make no sense.  i make no sense i can't even stand to read my shit half the time.  i need to focus.  i'm scattered.  something is happening.  nothing is happening.  i have a few weeks before its time to find out if i can stay at this place or not.  if i can't...if i have to move it is unimaginable.  all this STUFF.  all this lack of money and energy.  the endless online searching for where would i go if i could afford it?  where do i want? what do i want?  my head feels like 400 people are playing pingpong inside and half the time i'm just in a daze.

i can barely make a flower.  i can barely do anything.  and yet i'm always doing something.  i need to learn more.  i need more.  want more.  or. i need to let it all just fall away. apart.  who knows.  one day at a time. sometimes one hour at a time.  i envy people who get to take vacations and have space and time to breath.  thats not healthy.  i guess i envy their sense of safety.  them having the one or two people they enjoy being with and the space and time to relax and not constantly be  jumping from one hot spot to the next.  that they can buy something if they want and dont have to worry if they will go further into debt.  i used to have money.  i used to be miserable.  now i dont have money.  my lifestyle has changed drastically and i'm glad i've found my artist self but this isn't sustainable.  i dont know what i need.  i dont want to weld but i need to have that available to me.  i wish i could find someone who WASNT very creative and wanted to work for me.  i wish i could find a community that i could flourish in.  huntsville IS the city of death.  things die here.  where is the city of rebirth?  how do i get there?  or do i stay here and just keep waiting for the perfect storm. 

i have a feeling i have misspellings in here and blogger isn't picking it up.  forgive my stupidity

and ps.  an hour later i realize this isnt about money as much as it is about life. purpose. direction. being in the flow.  my flow stopped.  everything got jostled...pieces are falling all around me and i have no clue what i'm doing.


Chris said…
You have put your self in a tough spot. I really hate my job. I mean, there are days when I just can barely stand to be here. I don't fit in at all, and largely I think my co workers are idiots. But yet I continue. Why? Maybe it is because I have a family that relies on me. But also, because I want the things that you are complaining that you don't have, such as a vacation and not having to worry about money. I don't see anything really wrong with you generally. I don't blame you for not wanting to deal with what people are doing on facebook and that kind of thing. Being solitary, nothing wrong with that. But you really can't have it all your way, I think you need to have some kind of income, and sorry, that means a job. Most of us know that 90% of all jobs blow. Get this, where I work in corporate bullshit world, they've started a "leadership blog" and they don't understand why no one participates! Because it is boring horse shit, that's why!

Anyway, I'm sure you think I am an jerk, but it is painful to read about your pain, this is my impression of it all. Your flowers are cool, good luck selling them. I sell pretty much nothing on Etsy.
paula said…
i feel your pain. and right now i do work...the cleaning thing. i'm not gonna take a full time sucked into it job because then i can't make art and i wont make it emotionally. i disagree that one has to have a 'real job'....maybe im stubborn. i was making it earlier...i think i can do it again. and if i didn't need a large space to store/work on art i WOULD be making it, i could afford the little shit hole apartment. when tod was here sharing the bills it was easier but i dont have that option right now and its time i made it on my own and find my life.
and a vacation...for me would be a road trip to go find more stuff hahaha
thanks for sharing chris...i do appreciate other people even if i can't always make room for it all everyday. i know we all struggle in ways that are unimaginable. good luck with your job!!!!
Anonymous said…
Your getting ready for a big change within your life. HUGE!
I like that you go looking for scraps to save recycle. Hope your turning corner comes. You must say out load what you really want and say you deserve it!
paula said…
thank you julie
andrea said…
I've noticed that people who take an interest in something outside their own narrow concerns are the happiest/most successful/most fulfilled.
paula said…
well i am interested in other things andrea..i wouldnt bother reading or watching documentaries. i am moved by things/people. if i understand you correctly you just called me narrow minded :(
paula said…
i'd hate to think that finding a way to make a living doing what i love and surviving is a narrow concern. i dont think a person is much good to anyone if they are struggling.
sarala said…
Paula, the ways you are outside the so-called norm are what is so amazing and creative about you. Materially you and I are very different yet we still connect.
Finding oneself is very hard even for those of us who are well past 40! I doubt my choices on a nearly daily basis but all we can do is keep plodding along. I hope I'm making sense. Hang in there.
paula said…
thanks shara. its not something i'm happy to share these posts...someone pointed out to me that people usually make comments based on where they are at...i find it interesting we are all struggling in ways and that is obvious by comments left.
how we fix ourselves, how we are feeling...dealing with life. i guess if anything i learn from others and that is why i continue putting myself 'out there'.
i think you are right...and its good to hear that you doubt yourself daily. i feel less alone :)
Teo said…
I totally agree that we don't have to have a job if it make us miserable. That, if you like what you do and you have tons of talent, like you do. You made it once, you will make it again, that's sure! I think it's only the location that's not right. One think I didn't get though was... you would chose meat over "green vegetable thingies"?? Hahaa, sorry but yikes :D
paula said…
thanks teo. you are such a sweetheart.
....yes. meat ANY day. everyday forever!

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