I want a patron. A sugar-mama. A benefactor.
I’m doing my homework. My life homework. Well, I was. Now I am doing this.
Part of my homework requires looking up the inspirational folks in this world who inspire me. (Well, sort of. That’s how I am framing it for you, dear reader). And in this weekend of homework and creativity and being here and there on the ‘keeping the farm’ thing…I have come to this conclusion. I don’t really feel like working.
That’s not what it sounds like. I LOVE working. I work all the time. Work. Work. Work. I’m not afraid of getting my hands dirty, staying up late, elbow grease, exhaustion, details, getting it done. In fact, I believe I may have a relaxation allergy (can I take Benadryl for that?) that makes me well suited for work. Maybe some people call it OCD, but I just love to have projects and do things.
What I really mean is, I would like to take a professional sabbatical from my day job. Yes, I do actually love my job. It’s the longest single job position I’ve ever held. (A whopping three and a half years years. I’m 34 years old, and this is the longest I have ever worked in one place? Geesh, I am the epitome of my generation. My mom on the other hand, my rockstar mom, climbed the corporate ladder and artfully re-sculpted the glass ceiling at the company for 32 years, to the day. How’s that for stick-to-it-iveness that I will never have? I digress.) I worked and learned in my field for six years, including graduate school, to manifest this current job I hold. I actually have a career, if not a slightly obscure and unconventional one, and it works. I found a way to take the things I love (food, food systems, policy, big problems and school food) and make money from them (minus the paltry investment in graduate school…)
There is so much more I want to do. Yes, there is this farming thing. In order to turn the farm into something it requires more than one woman with a full-time job elsewhere. I’d just like the time. I’d like to have six months, one year, five years to just play (and by play, I mean work).
And…there is this incessant, internal, nagging, bugging, pot-and-pan-clanging desire to create. By create I mean write, cobble and craft. The me who painted all over her bedroom walls, my dorm room walls, journaled endlessly, navel-gazed, collaged, collected and always longed for more time to do it. It’s the part of me that was blogging nonsense to a mostly imaginary, duct-tape loving audience starting in 2003. This desire to communicate and craft and write and create – it calls to me. It begs me. It keeps me up at night. Not in the restless, toss-and-turn sleeping way, but in the nose-in-the-notebook way. I can’t turn it off.
Even more, it’s my medicine. In these recent months of turmoil, all of this create-and-make has re-calibrated my compass, set a familiar stake in the ground for me to come back to. Back to myself.
Ahh, and it feels so good.
And all I want to do is sit here, and write. Or sit with paper and ink-pen and write. Or stand in front of big pieces of paper and scrawl or cursive. Or collect feathers and wood scraps and wax and make something. I want to do it without worry of time or money or cleaning the muddy paw prints off the pickled-white kitchen floor (scratch that, eating and cleaning must happen, most of the time). Not squeeze it around a commute and an office desk and conference calls and meetings. But make it a priority. A quiet, whirlwind, creativity vortex life.
(Please, indulge me in this moment.)
[OK. I’m not a dummy. I know that being successful at life, especially a creative life, requires balance. And I know that should by any great act of grace or god or grapes I could ever get paid to do this creative stuff – that it’s not glamorous and it requires phone calls and business and everything else that I want to escape and avoid right now. But let me just have my moment of dreamy, patron-fueled creative escape.]