Passed

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A few weeks back I wrote about a job opening I was looking into. One that would be a big life shift. I applied and waited, and waited, and did calculations, and mulled and waited some more. I considered the work-life balance of the current job vs the potential of having benefits at the other. I mocked up a variety of pay scenarios, and time spent at work vs where I am at. Days passed, then a week, then another. A co worker had a family member die unexpectedly and went on bereavement leave, the boss was deep in contentious budget negotiations and it was a Saturday afternoon when I got the call for an interview. The following Tuesday between 1 and 3. I had pretty much figured the job was to be filled by a long term sub to finish the year, and had mentally moved on. And when I got the time frame, I verbally did. I explained that I would be at work covering shifts as we were understaffed at the moment, that I was sure they had good applicants and thank you for the phone call. There was some dead air on the other end of the line, then a “give us a call if you take the time off and can come in.” Monday being a holiday I was unsure how that would be possible. Plus it gave me pause, what sort of person would I be to call in knowing people were counting on me to show up for a day of work. What sort of employee would they be looking for if that was how I made it to the interview? It made me uncomfortable though.

Did I make the right choice in passing on this opportunity? Impossible to really know. I do know a M-F job would have meant finding companionship for Joe, as leaving him home 5 full days a week would be most unkind and make for a very lonely stretch for him. I now only have 2 full days and can spend the bulk of the others getting him out and about doing stuff, going places and socializing. He gets out to lunch with friends and to karate and the gym. So I traded maybe $400 or so a month in extra income for free time to use as I want. It feels like the right choice for how our lives are, and that is what the decision was ultimately about.

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To do and do and do

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I seem to be fighting the universe most days. I have so many directions I want to make progress in. And progress on all fronts is sporadic at best.

  1. streamlining my life, I have been working on this for a couple of years and have kicked it up a notch. Clearing, sorting, selling and removing items large and small that do little but take up space both real and mental. The paperwork piles are the worst: old forms, medical paperwork, letters, work paper etc.
  2. Joe’s recovery, which is top priority and yet leaves me wondering which things to really focus on. It is like choosing between the schoolwork or outdoor time. Which will prove the most beneficial in the long and short term.
  3. art and creativity, squeezing it in here and there doesn’t bring the results I would like. Goal setting at the start of each month ends up being too high for what the month bring. Which ends up leaving me feeling cranky for what I didn’t achieve instead of glad of what I did.

I need to accept what is achievable, let the time flow as it will and welcome the new pace of life as best I can. It has held many sweet surprises which I need to remember when I get a case of the crankies.

Spoon in the road

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I seem to have reached a spoon in the road. A fork would be easier to deal than the cul-de-sac nature of the spoon, which only returns me to where I started. It seems my days are full of things both tiny and large that are distracting and time-consuming, and sometimes with nothing to show for the effort. My studio work table is littered with “Huh, that didn’t work.” attempts. I fear I am casting my net too wide and netting nothing as a result for the time spent. Every new technique seems to catch my interest, to lead me down a path that peters out. Luckily I have avoided the wasted money that goes with these whims so it is just time that has been spent. This is why I stay off Pinterest, all the glossy. glittery ideas end up just being an annoyance, an interruption to time I could use elsewhere. And like a buffet too tempting to overindulge in. It is too easy to get caught up in the idea of trying too many new things to the detriment of all of them. I am trying to avoid the cul-de-sac ¬†detours that keep me from the creativity I need to focus on, to determine what I really want to create and less on the ideas that look fun but aren’t really me. When I am next in the studio, I will sweep away the detritus of what has crept in and been interesting to try but not interesting enough to deserve table space. To avoid the spoons in the road.

By the way, who leaves a spoon (or any other flatware) in the road anyhow?

Pellucid-ity

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Yesterday I went to the ocean, even though we live fairly close to it we don’t get there very often. For me it is a necessity to do so at least once a year. As I get closer, I feel my spirits lift and mind start to come into focus. Being by the water gives me a chance to step back from things and let whatever is on my mind drift about and settle for a bit before it drifts some more. I feel like I have a million decisions to make with shifting or scanty information, and watching the waves roll in and out; unconcerned with anything, helps put it in perspective. It doesn’t change the need to make decisions, it just allows me the space to not let them take on sizes that cloud the real issue. As I have gone twice recently to the ocean, I know I am letting my perspective get skewed. When I go someplace near water, I try to let the special quality of the light wash over me and rejuvenate me, taking in as much as I can to store for later. I find that light near water has a quality all its own which I call Pellucid-ity, as it brings with it a lucidity of thought that I am seeking. Generally I am a “make decisions and move on” type¬†of person, with only occasional waffling. Recently though I have found I am what iffing way too much over every decision, which drives me nuts, as nothing proceeds. Yesterday helped me set it all aside to see what appears naturally and to stop the over thinking, Hopefully I stored up enough to keep my reserves high, if not i will set aside another day for a trip to the ocean.