3+Me: Thankful for the panic

They drive me nuts.

They make me panic.

They stress me out.

And I wouldn’t trade them for the world.

Am I talking about stepkids or paintings?

樂

Trick question I guess — it could go both ways.

In a way, raising kids is like creating art.

And creating art is, well, kinda like raising kids.

In both, you put your heart and soul into the process. You keep your eyes on the end goal, on what you hope they’ll turn out to be.

But all you can really do is pay attention in the “now,” do your best, and hope your moment-by-moment decisions are the right thing.

Because at the end of it all, they have a mind of their own. (Yes, paintings too.) You have to listen to them and accept their input, and when YOU let go is when THEY can shine their brightest.

But that doesn’t mean they don’t stress you out in the meantime.

Juggling the kids’ emotional wellbeing, activities, eating habits, screentime monitoring and learning curves takes a toll on their responsible adult. (I’m lucky I don’t get the brunt of it, that’s what their mom and dad do — thanks guys!)

And juggling art’s deadlines, commission requirements, art show prep, marketing and overall creation is a different kind of stressful, but still weighs on you as the artist.

But if you think of the alternative, of what your life would look like without either of those stresses — it paints a bleaker picture, doesn’t it?

Not having those responsibilities (or comparable ones) might be “easier” — but dear lord it’d be boring, wouldn’t it?

Personally, I’m thankful for the things that drive me nuts.

That make me panic.

That stress me out.

Because they’re also the things that bring me a ton of joy, honestly.

I wouldn’t trade that for the world.

Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.

❀

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