Into extra time.

A year ago this week my life took a drastic and surreal turn. It all sounds so dramatic now but the basic upshot is that I should have died. The start of last year wasn’t good for me for a number of reasons all too unpleasant to regurgitate here, let’s just say that on top of the near terminally narrowed arteries, the mental and physical strain should have finished me off. Suddenly being pulled out of your environment and having to deal with your own, very imminent, mortality does things to you. You realise what’s really important in life and you find out who your friends are and the silences are very very conspicuous. I think it’s fair to say that I had come off the rails at this point last year, between hideous revelation after hideous revalation, the effects of a life threatening illness I wrote off as the anxiety getting worse and the utterly vile medication I had to ingest that made me feel even worse than I already did, I did some very foolish and ill considered things. I certainly wasn’t proud of myself and still aren’t, looking back. I did do a lot of art though and I processed the experiences of ill health, mortality and recovery in a productive manner and that will always be there. There were over fifty artworks in that show alone and most of them weren’t totally rubbish, add to that all the other stuff and I can safely double, possibly treble that figure, I even sold a few. Then there was the other stuff, the bears, the commissions, the workshops and I’m topping the year out with something rather special that is going to make a lot of difference to some very lovely people. I think I’ve done alright, that isn’t bad for year one, it’s the next year I’m worried about…
Between the economic downturn and the government chiselling away at the support I receive for being disabled, this next year and, more worryingly, the year after, things are going to be tough to say the least and I am truly terrified whenever I think about it. Panicking doesn’t help though so I just keep my head down and focus on the things that are in my control rather than that which isn’t. Truth is, I don’t know what the next year holds but if I can look back on that and say I achieved as much as I did in this first year of extra time I will be happy. 
I think I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last year and a lot about the world too. I’ve learnt a lot about other people too and it was mostly good… Mostly…
What will I learn in the next year? Who knows? But so long as I keep learning, thinking, having ideas and creating it won’t be a waste of time. 

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