In the beginning of 2015, I was faced with the hard choice of continuing my art career or giving my time to my family. I of course had to choose my family, but it has taken me through a whirlwind of emotions. I have had to learn a new, selfless way to think and exhist in the world. My time is not my own anymore. I used to sneak away to my studio to work and just think. But I gave up my alone time to engage with the people I love.
This all has not been easy. I have been creating things since I could hold a crayon. Through college I still created in my spare time. Then after undergrad I began using art as a business. Like all business, success is determined by who you know. I just came to that realization recently. After all my failures I realized I just don't have any connections. There was no one regularly buying my art and seeing my art through a failing business, left a bitter taste in my mouth. My art has been my business for over 12 years, so to quit and just be a wife and mother was and is so hard.
On the one hand I feel like I lost my labels, my independence, my expression, and my purpose, on the other I feel like I am required to raise thoughtful, generous, passionate people. I chose to marry. I chose to have children. And I wanted to do everything, to have it all. But my business did not go anywhere and our family was stressed out. So I gave up a way of life that was so ingrained in me, that I still have panic attacks when the house is still.
I have learned that I am the glue that holds this family together. My partner is the one that's good at making money, I am not. I am good at saving us money and work very hard to live a certain lifestyle on a budget. My time is mostly spent cooking, cleaning, running errands and gardening. Some of those things I enjoy, some I hate, but all take time. When I worked on art, one or all of the things that need to be done on a daily basis would get pushed to another time, build up or get put on my partners to do list. There have been summers where I could not participate in camping trips or vacations because I had to get a project done.
My goal is to simplify my life. I just breath and tell myself I need more down time. I don't need to live a life constantly on the go. I need to be board again.
I am not sure if I will ever do art as a business again. I still have projects that I am working on, but the world will see less of them than in years past. It is time for me to live a selfless life. I must give up my dreams of being a respected artist and maker for the dreams of my children.