Tuesday, July 28, 2015

I Fight Demons

It’s about time I write a new blog entry.  I have been quite remiss in this.  I’ve been avoiding it for a while because I felt I had nothing to say.  Or, rather, that I had nothing I wanted to say.  I had lots to say; I just didn’t want to blog about it.  But then I thought, perhaps, that sharing what I was feeling might help others feel not so crazy.  Not so alone.  So if this gets too touchy-feely for you, feel free to flee to the next blog.  I’ll never know. 
The rest of you are nosy little buggers, I assume, so read on…

The life of an artist is full of unpredictability, so we cherish the parts that remain constant; when one or more of those parts go off the rails, it can be anywhere from disorienting to debilitating.  If we are lucky, the event may provide a welcome challenge and even inspire creativity.  If not, we may become paralyzed, agitated or depressed.  I have had such a disruption and struggling with the fallout has been and continues to be a silent but insidious, raging roller-coaster within me. 

On the one hand, the event demands a careful evaluation of assets and aspirations: I am required to reexamine financial options, opportunities and outcomes; to consider my family’s needs, hopes, and dreams; to face my ongoing personal struggle to align livable commercial rewards with my artistic endeavors.  It is a sobering situation.  I fight demons.

On the other hand, it may be a sign from the Universe that the time is now.  Or, in a less cosmic light, I might say that circumstances have arrived that, though on the surface they may seem unfortunate, they may in fact allow for me to turn things to my advantage.  To discover new paths.  To tap new fonts.

In short, outlook is everything.  My outlook, alas, has proved floundering: from energized output to lethargic apathy to morbid despondency.  You might say I’ve been flirting with manic-depressive behavior.   But flirting is supposed to be fun…and this feels like torture.  The artistic sensibility is that of a mystical, ephemeral fragility, encased in a colorful armor of panache and perspicacity.  Such nebulous centers are hardly immovable, hardly hearty.  We artists aim to keep the armor up—even when there is nothing to support the outer shell but swirling fairy dust.

Life challenges are not uncommon and mine are of no more import than anyone else’s.  I know that.  And I know that, one way or another, I shall forge ahead, perhaps with a stronger shield, a swifter sword or more dense star stuff in my gut. Time and future circumstances will tell, but I’m hopeful the determined side of me shall vanquish the despairing.

And so I fight demons.