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life blip

earlier this week i wrote a self missive and posted it on my private facebook notes page.  seemed people liked it. i decided to post it here cuz each day i wake up, get online, check the blogs, check the usual suspects and see ya'll keep going. keep writing, keep posting while i on the other hand have almost dropped off the face of the earth in blogworld.  i myself have gotten bored by my life.  not by my art, but bored by posting what i do with art and i sometimes wonder if that 'hurts' me in any way as far as getting any kind of people exposure for friends/contacts/sales etc.  then i think, if ya dont feel it ya shouldnt make yourself do it.  i remember reading in wayne d's interpretation of the tao something about being invisible. (my words).  be one of those people that dont need to broadcast and be seen or heard. i liked that. i've liked plugging away doing my thing and keeping it low key.  i dunno,  i guess sometimes i do miss sharing but i keep thinking i'm so fucking boring who cares what i do or think.  and its my art if i dont post art stuff what else is there?  anyhow. many of you have already read this but here it is again...and by the way, after a few days to digest this, i wanted to state that to some i may seem like a baby to feel so upset, were it not for my daily struggles with just making it and feeling alone and having little emotional/financial reserves i'm sure i would have amassed more strength.  when you feel worn down it doesnt take much out of the ordinary to short circuit. i also want to say that my landlord is doing the best he can to get insurance and roofers to fix (retar) the roof as well as trying to keep a tarp up there without it blowing away.  i've since moved most of my living room contents (art) into my bedroom so the now growing leaks [10+] can splat all they want and i'm not so wigged out cuz less stuff is vulnerable to being ruined with rusty water

anyhow here it is.  LIFE BLIP:

i was burnt.  drained.  jittered out and on the tail end of a hysteria that comes from feeling like an amputee against life.  you think one leak is bad....wait til you have 9 or 10 and more on the way.  wait til the sky pisses and pours upon you and you find yourself frozen like an animal listening and waiting for more signs and clues of possible fluid ruination of your personal possessions.

the day turned bad fast.  fast forward 10 hours later and i am sitting in my living room looking at everything displaced.  large buckets are dotting my floor and water is still slithering down 2 walls;  randomly dripping, insultingly slow from the industrial bolts in the steel ceiling.  for now the rain has stopped.  more is predicted nearly every day this week and until the insurance company does its thing (end of the week at best) with the landlord, and until its dry for 48 hours i am not getting the roof fixed.  tarp and plastic were put on the roof this afternoon but its windy here; i've been told not to expect much improvement.  at least they did that.  and at least the landlord brought big buckets over and sat and talked with me for a few hours.  at least i know he gives shit.  he is human.  and i got to know him in a way i hadnt previously.

so, fast foward thru the panic that hit me as i felt helpless and reminded me that i have nowhere to go.  no place to take refuge.  no money to flee and no one to really go thru this with me. that its up to me to stand guard and protect my possessions, my electronics and art.  its up to me to withstand the tortuous sounds of dripping water.  i  got thru it even though sometimes life makes me feel like i am so trapped i can't take it another minute.  trapped in existence.  trapped in my patterns.  trapped in my disease.  sometimes i'm free.  most times not.

once i regained some emotional balance i opened my door to have a look at the world.  i saw a middle aged woman struggling with a huge suitcase and a shoulder bag across the street.  i live a block and some senseless amount away from the greyhound bus station and i figured she was heading there.  she looked like every ounce of energy had been used up in lugging that suitcase from god knows where.  i grabbed my keys and ran out after her.  i felt silly and like i might even scare her as i was shoddily dressed myself and didnt want her thinking i was trying to steal from her...besides she only had just a little ways to go but i knew she might not make it.  i could feel it.  i watched her stopping every 3 feet and switching hands.  i called out to her before i even got there because i couldnt stand to watch her another second.  i took her big ugly bamboo colored suitcase and was shocked at how light it was.  it broke my heart.  and in that little bit of space left between us and the bus station she rambled on about having broken her tailbone.  about having to come here from kansas to deal with a ticket that was now up to 3,000.  about how she hadnt eaten since yesterday and when she did she just vomited it up.  she was thirsty.  she said she felt like she was going to pass out.

i felt like i was going to panic again.  panic for her.  panic because of her.  panic because life seems so fucking unfair and hard.  because no one should have a ticket accrue to that much money.  panic because of the bad choices we make.  that she didnt come here with that big stupid suitcase, instead she found herself getting some clothes at the mission and then getting the suitcase to carry the clothes.  all i could think was jesus christ wtf are you doing buying this shit HERE IN HUNTSVILLE that you can't even carry? what is it with us and needing THINGS.

she didnt even know when or if the bus was coming.  i was jumping out of my skin, wanting to help her but feeling the exhaustion that was her life and not being able to bear it.  that suitcase?  it started getting heavy and i found myself shifting it from left to right hand.  i felt like dropping it and running away from her, away from everything and giving up on life.  i knew i had to get her there, i almost wanted to drive her myself to kansas and fix her life, mine didnt feel so wonderful all of a sudden, it felt self absorbed and meaningless and yet i knew my life was creative and good, that my life was worth getting back to.  and hers, for her...was hers to deal with as well.  once we got inside the station i wished her well i skittered home full of panicky adrenalin, knowing i had to go back and give her some fortification of some sort .  i rushed home and grabbed an energy bar and 2 emergenC vitamin packets and walked back to give them to her.  had i any cash on me i know i would have stupidly given every dime i had to her.

i was glad to come home to my cold wet leaky apartment.  glad i didnt have to ride a fucking greyhound bus back to kansas feeling like i was going to pass out.  feeling a broken tail bone bumping on every dip in the road.  glad i was me.  at least i'm familiar with my own hell.  i'm familiar with my fights and the paths i've worn fighting my uphill financial and emotional battles.  i dont know what anything means.  i fear losing my freedom, what little i feel i have.  i fear not finding an 'in' to that porthole that one finds when one accepts and feels peace no matter the temporary circumstances that is life.  i am aware of my stupid struggles, my primal raw fears that shouldnt lock me up socially or emotionally. my landlord and i were having a rather philosophical talk about living an artists' life (he did for 20 years and said he couldnt do it anymore, he couldnt do all that struggling that you do emotionally/financially)  and he said something about 'this' (meaning my apartment and the leaks) meaning something on a bigger level and i knew what he meant.  i laughed and said yes....YES. MY APARTMENT IS SOBBING FOR ME.  the floodgates are open.  no other apartment in this big building is leaking.  just mine.  it is crying.  i am listening.


NuminosityBeads said…
This is great that you posted this here. I was touched by your story even though I didn't take the time to say so. I think it looks grand here on the big screen and deserves to be read by others.
xoxo Kim
Kim Hambric said…
Paula, I was very moved by your "story." I wish there were rewards for people doing what they can for others.

Yes, your blog is the place to put your feelings (according to me, anyway).

I've been quiet about how I really feel lately. I haven't wanted to email you and give you any of my crap. I haven't sold a damn thing in six months. My PayPal account is completely empty. This is where I keep my sales money and buy art supplies and Etsy items.

I'd love to send you energy and will but I've run dry.

I can send you love and I'll do a non-rain dance. After that, I might just crawl into bed and stay there.
paula said…
kim #1, thank you :)

kim #2 you dont need to send me energy and you can send me emails that are ALL ABOUT YOU and i will love you and support you.
AnitaNH said…
Having been through the whole leaky roof thing myself I understand what you are going through. Hope things get repaired soon so that your sanity can return! Glad to see you blogging again, at any rate (see, some good has come from it) and I *LOVE* your new pendants.
Martha C. Hall said…
I read your story on FB the other night and was very touched, in so many ways. I was about to post something at the time, I don't even remember what, but it suddenly seemed so stupid and trivial that I didn't post. (Well, it is FB and probably most of my posts are trivial. I'm just trying to keep in touch with people too, as I spend the better part of my days at home/studio alone) Anyway, what you did for that woman was beautiful and I hope you know that. I'm wishing you the best, as always. Oh, and I also hope it stops raining there!
Colleen Kole said…
you amaze me-artist/author/great friend of all.

I didn't even know what to say to it and to you. other than you amaze me.
paula said…
you guys make it all bearable on any given day xoxo
ArtPropelled said…
I can't find the right words (and have deleted quite a few because they seem so diluted considering what you are going through) but know that I am in awe of the way you keep plodding on. Sending a big prayer that you get given a big break very soon!
Anonymous said…
What a story- thank you for getting it out. That is what a bog if for. Remember- It can't rain all the time.
Rebeca Trevino said…
you have way more strength than you know. thanks for sharing your story.

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