Monday, July 29, 2013

I feel charming

I've been working.  And working and working and working.  And I love it.  I've skipped into the studio on a few occasions.  In fact I've developed my own superhero version of The Flash zoom, zoom, zooming, right fist in the air, left leg kicked out, jaunt into work.  I've always loved my work but I've been injected with a ginormous surge of want for more, a creative burn, a soul satisfying, nose to the grind stone kind of push for work lately.

I was bopping around the house yesterday singing to myself and possibly out loud just a bit, "I feel charming, oh so charming.  It's alarming how charming I feel!"  And it occurred to me that "I feel charming" wants to be on a Buoy necklace or ring.  And so does "I feel pretty"!!  Quick on the heels of that thought came "why on God's green earth are you singing that song?"  I did not like that movie.  Not even a little bit.  There.  I said it.  I did not like the movie West Side Story.  In fact, when I tried to watch it I specifically remember having this thought: "this does not even fall in to the category 'you paid for it, you have to watch it'".  Right about now two of my oldest and dearest, Kim and Natalie, are cussing me up a blue streak.  When Kim and I lived together she cleaned house to either West Side Story or The Sound of Music.  I was much more inclined to help on Sound of Music days!!

So, are you cussing me too?  Or are you saying "what the heck is a Bouy necklace"?  If you're cussing me, I'm sorry.  I don't know what to do about it other than to make a couple of pieces in ode to this overrated movie.  But if you're asking about the Buoy, that I can help with!
At the time that this urge to work began to intensify I had this pretty little pink druzy I wanted to turn into a pretty little ring.  But as I dreamt up the setting it wasn't my typical setting and as I finished it it begged for more so I soldered the word "heal" to the back.  The back.  Not the front.  The back of a ring so that no one but the wearer will see it.  I showed it off a little and got some truly loving words of encouragement from Tom and from my dad.  I knew I wanted more.
I enjoyed the little pink druzy ring for a day...while hanging out in the yard with The Business Man.

I wanted to put the words I need whispered into my ear onto the pieces I'm sending off into the world.  I want to make work that takes me days, work that gives me fits, work that flows out of the tips of my fingers, work that is rich with that has a secret.  I want a strong ring that oozes confidence but quietly whispers its message to its person because they need to remember that they're pretty or that they are strong and that they're healing.  They need a buoy, something to cling to.  So began the Buoy series.
This ring is oxidized sterling silver with a giant, beautiful agate and a little vintage plastic cabachon.  On the back I put the words "I want to live again".  This baby is gonna is gonna make his home here with me.

These pieces are new for me.  I'm spending hours, days even, on each one.  It reminds me so much of college when we would spend weeks on one project and then have group crit where everyone put their work in the center of the table and we all gathered around to let the criticizing (or praising) commence.  I dreaded those days!!!!  I am a people pleaser by nature (gigantic understatement).  I do not like confrontation or uncomfortable situations.  Seinfeld is my least favorite show EVER because its very bedrock was the uncomfortable situation!  Anyway, making this labour intensive, time intensive work again does take me back and I am realizing, a little too late, that putting my work out here for all to see is a bit like those college crits.  You are free to judge and/or criticize.
Oxidized sterling silver, rich olive green resin studded with aqua, a handmade clasp, and a snippet from one of my favorite songs "I hope that everybody can find a little flame.  Me I just say my prayers and then I light myself on fire and walk out on the wire once again."
I threw all the bells and whistles at this large scale necklace.  I ran her through the rolling mill, oxidized her, filled her with resin and finished her off with links of chain that I made by hand, each and every link, cut, soldered, formed, hammered, and sanded.  "Try to try.  That's all."

I'm aiming to get this new work loaded into my etsy shop this week, that's the goal.  But I might have to wait until "I feel charming" is ready to join the rest of the crew!

Friday, July 26, 2013

trying to find my way back

I'm trying to find my way back here.  I've been away for a bit.  I have felt that in order to come back here (I say it like its a physical space) that I would have to post about what happened, about losing my boy.  But I'm not ready to do that.  Not even close.  But I missed being here.  I have had things I've wanted to put down somewhere, things and thoughts to share...but here has been a hard place to go.  It's like a room with a closed door that I haven't been able to open.  But I have all this stuff.  And I realize that I've grown rather attached to you, to sharing with you.  And I have all this stuff.  Its not all heavy stuff.  I've got some cool new work I'd love to show I'm putting my toe in the water, I'm venturing in...

Please forgive me if this seems disjointed and reads like you've skipped a chapter.  It's me who skipped a chapter.  I hope that I will be able to write it one day.  In the mean time I'm getting out these thoughts or musings that have been tumbling around in my noggin for the past few weeks.  It might be a little diary-esque.  I apologize.  I just kinda need to get it out and put it somewhere, on a shelf out here in the webosphere.  Maybe you will read, maybe no one will read.  This is quite possibly entirely for self indulgent little ole me.  But here I go...

I've had loss before. Four in the last 20 months in fact. And loss my whole life, like anyone who lives a life. My grandfather, grandmother, my brother, great grandmother, another great grandmother, my aunt...a dog I called my sister, my first cat and other childhood pets....and that's just the loss of death. There is other loss.

But none compare to this. It's not to say I love Clarence more or them less. It's not that. It must be a perfect storm of circumstances. All these things rallied together to make this the hardest (when I say hard I mean rock hard, like concrete, the hardest hard there's the largest expanse of a rock hard parking lot...), it's the hardest loss I've felt. And there is no moving past it that I can see. No getting through it or over it. There is just learning how to live with it as a new member of the family. Because it is. It's always there and it takes up physical space. It's the strangest thing, they seem contradictory of each other - loss and physical space. But I know now that they can be the same.  

I've never understood grief until now.  That's not true.  I've grieved.  I guess what I didn't understand until now is that grief isn't uniform.  I've struggled so much with how differently I've responded to this...I've felt tremendous guilt for not doing the things I did with past loss.  But the thought of doing some of those things (like posting about it here) is utterly paralyzing.

It might be different one day. I can't see it now, but maybe it will. For right now this is our life. And I'm trying to figure it out. I'm trying to learn, each day, how to be and how to get through it as well as possible. Even good when I can.

The hard part is the people in my life. I'm sure they are ready for me to be back. I'm not sure when the me they knew will ever be back. I feel awkward around people who know me.  I feel weird talking about frivolous stuff but I don't want to talk about anything serious.  I just do not know how to be. 

I feel like I've been whittled into something so small that I have nothing to give them.

I feel this need to apologize for this. That part, the apologizing-worrying-what-everyone-thinks part is definitely the old me, the always me. I feel like people probably think I'm being overly dramatic. God forbid they might even be thinking or saying that awful sentence "it's just a dog.". (I really kinda hated even typing those words)
But things happened in a way, each little stone laid out on a path to this outcome. If even one stone, one event, would have been placed differently this might all be different. Either physically different or emotionally different. But the choices we made, the path we took, the outcome we has left me broken, full of red hot anger with no way to fix it, no where to put it. So I'm just living as best I can. I'm working.  I'm working A LOT.  I'm working because it's THE thing that helps.

My grief is my grief.  It's all mine.  It is profound and it's mine.  It will last forever I assume.  And that is why I am whittled down and that is why I need to be a hermit, even more than before, (for a bit) and I need that to be ok.