Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Another Long Stretch

"Tidal Pool,"  May 2012
I get overwhelmed too easily.  Why, I don't know.  Some people thrive on stress, some people welcome stress with open arms, some people actually are productive under stress, some people learn how to deal with it, and others just shut down.  I'm one of those that shut down, even under mild stress.  Why?  I don't know.  But what I do know know is that I don't deal with stress and life becomes counter productive.  The blog is just one facet that gets left in the dust.  Its been a while, no?  So much has gone down, so many fun details ignored, life keeps happening to me and I'm just floating through the day, the weeks, the months...  So I read an updated blog, finally, from a dear friend, Faye.  She has been absent from the blog seen for a while as well and she got me to thinking.  My thoughts and words do matter, at least to me.  They help me feel better about myself, my motivations, my life.  They put things in some what of a perspective and allow me to reflect on just how much I have accomplished and just how much I am blessed, very blessed indeed.

Since January, I have just sort of skated through 2012.  My art work has been dismal.  I've produced three pieces of which one is presented here, "Tidal Pool"-a mixed media and collage work in my Claiming Sanctuary ongoing series. I did manage to get accepted to the big Art of the Land fundraiser gallery show at the Starline Gallery (in September) once again, so that will be on the horizon.   I did get to meet one of my collage idols, Laura Lein-Svencner at a one day workshop.  I marvel at how organized she is and how talented she is.  She is living the artist life and sucking up every minute of it.  I marvel at how she juggles everything.  Young adults still living at home, doing the home maker thing, full time artist and collage teacher (a ton of prep work goes into her classes...amazing), mom to several animals, an avid gardener, she even makes her own paper (from scratch).  I am sure I am missing several things( like almost daily walks in her local forest preserve).  Jealous, maybe..  As I get older though, I know jealousy is a dangerous emotion and to be careful what I wish for.  So I follow Laura's blog and dream a little, but not too much.  

Since January, my father-in-law went spiraling down hill (too quickly) into the depths of Alzheimer's.  My husbands sister was closest to the situation and she she was ever caring for and handling all his affairs.  We will be forever grateful to her. My husband was with his Dad often and our family tried to make as many trips as possible to visit. In mid May, Jack Ellis passed away under Hospice care.  My sister-in-law and her husband were there all morning but had stepped out just for a breather.  That is when Jack passed.  Marc was very close, very close to his Dad.  Its been a long couple of weeks.  Alzheimer's is an awful condition.  I prefer to remember Jack as he was during my early years of marriage:  vivacious, loving, fun, life filled him with exuberance on a daily basis, a lover of animals, an adoring Grandfather, lover of the arts, optimist, and an individual in peace with himself and nature.  I will miss you Jack Ellis.

In April I learned that I could be a chaperon for the Bolshoi Ballet's Summer Intensive in New York City.  Colin was actually thrilled to have me come along, really?  Colin is seventeen and it will be his first time in New York City for 6 frigging weeks, really, its OK for Mom to come along?  Hell ya, he embraced the idea.  I can't even describe what went into that decision making process and I am still concerned about my decision to go. I am so guilted out at leaving my two daughters for 6 weeks. There is so much to deal with on the home front over this 6 week period.  Marc works full time after all, Claire has a summer intensive with Judith Svalander School of Ballet (she still doesn't have that drivers license yet), school registration needs to be done with numerous dumb ass forms, senior pictures needs to be arranged, Katie's college registration for fall needs to get paid (stupid computer program sucks and has changed several times since she started at our local college--it takes a college grad and then some to figure out how to pay the school), dogs need food on weekly basis, certain bills need attending too, making/cooking healthy dinners, and that is a just a few things poor Marc will have to contend with during this 6 week period.  But my dearest husband told me if I wanted to do it, then go for it.  It is a once in a lifetime opportunity.  Imagine, I would get to be in one of the most highly ranked cultural centers of our country, seeing first hand  top training in ballet from a world renowned ballet school.  New York City is where Colin wants to be someday.  I had been so nervous about sending him on his own and now I can be there if he needs me...but at what price? At any rate, I would really love to blog this experience, I just hope I can make that a reality.I won't have the capability to upload pictures from my camera, but if I remember to use my son's iPad, I might be able to get a few pics.

In the midst of all this "upheaval," I had to get physicals.  Those who know me may know that I hate doctors.  Anyway I went and we discovered that I have hypertension.  Doctor told me mine was genetic and all the exercise and diet in the world would not alleviate the condition.  A few meds later, its under control.  Whew.  I also started a walking program in mid April to at least get my sorry legs moving again for all the walking I will be doing.  I purchased a new pair of Saucony running shoes (my favorites for walking) and off I went.  I am happy to say I think I'm going to be fine as far the physical part of this trip.  Now I face the real stress of packing for 6 weeks for the two of us, getting to the airport, getting checked in, flying out, and getting to the place that we are going to call home.  Why do I do this to myself?  I guess I am getting myself mentally prepared for the upcoming fall/winter whirlwind of company auditions and college auditions for Colin and college visits and interviews for Claire.  After New York I have to hit the ground running (walking, running is not in my vocabulary). 

Right now...we are in the midst of tech week at the Woodstock Opera House.  It is spring performance time.  This year is the Judith Svalander's School of Ballet 40th anniversary.  Instead of a full length ballet, Mrs Svalander pulled together a program that promises to delight.  She has selected repertoire from her 40 years as an artistic director.  Many favorites of her instructors will be highlighted as well as some excerpts of full length ballets that were staged at her hands (or feet lol).  Its a big time for Colin and Claire because they are both members of her company.  They dance a lot..which does my heart good.  I will never get tired of watching them...ever.  We are going to all the performances.  Here is the link: If you are in the are..this is a great venue.  It is also a wonderful way to introduce young children to ballet. The program will be fast moving so it will keep children's attention on the stage.  It should be a blast.

Now I am babbling..  I need to come up for air and continue my journey...


PaintingsbyLinda said...

Kathy- this is a wonderful blog- so well written and interesting!
As a person who grew up in Brooklyn, lived in Staten Island for a number of years, and now lives in New Jersey, I have to tell you that the ballet opportunity is beyond fabulous!!! We frequent Manhattan at least once, sometimes 2-3 times a month on the communter bus!(We even sometimes drive--when we are feeling brave to sit in traffic). My daughter lives and works in Mahattan. Not only is it a place beyond all others (meant in a very positive way), it is beautiful, cultural and oppotunites exist that exist no where else! Very best of luck to you and your family. Your son has made a huge achievement.

Healing Woman said...

Congratulations on your invitation to help with the ballet in NY. What a time you will have. Your life has been busy and hectic but I think the ballet experiences you have provided for your children will see you through. You will look back on your life as very being very meaningful and successful. Anything we do for our children comes back round to us.

So glad to see you posting again!