Munkitty my male ragdoll is permitted to sleep in the bedroom in the winter. The enjoyable part for me is having his little warm body backed up against my winter legs. Less comforting I find is his desire to start the day earlier than I want. He is tenacious, head butting the covers off my legs,exerting his high pitched whine, attempting to rouse me, eventually making his way to my face inserting a paw to the eye. I don’t want to wake up . Not just becauseI am still tired or don’t want to face another day only 7 months after Steve’s death, but because I have always dreaded the morning. Anyone who has known me knows I am not a “morning person’. But that to be clear this is utterly simplistic , a way to be considered part of huminaity. A label , another pigeon hole to hide in.
On this morning I side step the usual explanations for my disinclination and realize with a start that I don’t want to go to school. But I am not in school. My last foray with academia was my analytic training. I am now a quarter of a century past that. The dread deepens. My gut starts to contract . I feel nauseous. What is this about ? What am I thinking ,. More to the point what am I feeling and why ? As my vagus nerve lights up I find the image if not the words. I see a gray dawn out of a car window. It is winter and my breath stinks from vomit. It is 1953 and I don’t want to go to the Catholic school I was forced to attend in Downtown Aurora Illinois.
This feeling of a deep need to create has pushed it’s way to the surface of a long standing and very private despair about humanity. It is the core feeling which drives me to meet the challenges of both my instinct to make something and my desire to caretaker something. Both desires come from the same place , but now have equal standing in my psyche.
It is now five weeks since the eastern metro area has been issued a stay at home warning. I am unexpectedly relieved. This unnatural state of affairs suits my introverted persona just fine and causes me to intuitively reach inside my creative self for support. Truthfully I am elated! Scared but elated that I can move from tele-caregiver to practicing artist without a thought for the importance of both roles. This is finally me, the one I left behind when I practiced the sole job of dedicated mental health worker. Unfortunately this deeply held revelation comes at the price of facing my own mortality for I am part of the at risk population that at this moment should be assiduously protected. I am old. Still a considerable neophyte in regard to my art career, but old to the world. I am persistent.