Successes and Failures

"It is not the critic who counts; not the person who points out how the athlete stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.  The credit belongs to the one who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is no effect without error and shortcomings."     Theodore Roosevelt edited by me.

I lost 40 pounds this Summer.  What a challenge!  I wrote down everything I consumed -every corn chip, every leaf of kale.  Man, I have been so proud of myself as I've struggled with weight issues for about 8 years now!!  Then on Monday I went in to get my bloodwork done and found out almost immediately that my cholesterol and LDL levels have risen to an all time high.   My cholesterol comes in 325 mg/dl.  (standard range is anything UNDER 239 mg/dl.)

OK, so I just have to fix it, right?  Right!  But the interesting thing is that this little tidbit of information hit me EMOTIONALLY like a ton of bricks.  Partly, I had this sense of immense well-being because of the weight loss.   I don't actually feel any different physically than I did on Monday, but my sense of well-being has vanished.  I am upset by the numbers -what they mean.  I feel defeated. 

This will never do.

So I woke up 2 days ago and decided that I needed to put my Bad-Ass Suit on.  I have scoured the internet for information on how to reduce my cholesterol without going on artificial statins.  I am making a choice today on which kind of personal training I want to partake in, have gotten the right foods for this, ordered a natural statin that is arriving Tuesday and bottle of Co-Q10 which arrived this morning.

I am 99% certain my doctor will tell me to get on Big Pharma statins, but I want to try to beat this the natural way, and I know I can do it!   I am going to suggest she let me try for a month and a half to 2 months.  If there is no change in my numbers at the end of that time, I will concede and join the dark side.  But I have got to try this first, because yes: I AM bad-ass....iamiamiamiamiam....

The Good and the Stressful

First, the good, yes?  There's a call out for small and affordable work at Radius Gallery.  I had wanted to create frames for my little painting collages for awhile, so I made a couple of frames for them (even though, my flippin' scroll saw broke).  I made 2 frames.  um.  THEY SUCKED!  I mean, my idea for them just did not pan out at all.  And I didn't see how I could change my idea or the materials to make it work so I bailed on it for now and fell back into my comfort zone, which are the boxes. 

This is my first mini-box:

"Ode to Dorian Gray"  2016

"Ode to Dorian Gray"  2016

It's very small; it fits in my hand.  The scroll is simply placed in and can drop out if it's not wedged in quite right, but for the most part it stays put.  To me when I see it on my wall it reminds me of a piece of jewelry...ok, much too large for jewelry, but you get the idea.  The sunflower hook is an antique, and adds a certain vibe that I like a lot.  I consider the photograph side the "outside" and the old decomposing tintype the "inside," though I have spent time with it hanging both ways and like it equally well no matter which side is hanging.  I feel like the scroll and the broken personal photo have a private feel to them.

The scroll looks like this:

Inside with scroll unfurled, "Ode to Dorian Gray"  2016

Inside with scroll unfurled, "Ode to Dorian Gray"  2016

I've "signed" the inside underneath the scroll.  The quote is from Oscar Wilde's creation, "The Picture of Dorian Gray."  I've also shown the edge box because the wood is pretty, and by holding it, you can get a sense of the size of the finished piece.

I have 2 more coming out now, and I love them both...will post as soon as I get them finished.

The rather unpleasant bit that happened isn't real...or maybe it's more accurate to say that it is a dream, but says something about where my mind is at.  In the dream I traveled across the country to attend a show I was in.  I had sent a lot of work to this gallery, and was excited to go see it. 

I walked into the gallery and nobody knew who I was, but they were all friendly-seeming and were milling about drinking wine, and laughing with each other.  I did not see my work anywhere, so I began to wander in search of my pieces.  A smaller gallery branched off behind the bigger one, and I entered.  There was nobody in there.  There was work on the walls, but no viewers and none of the pieces were mine.  And then a hallway...that took a turn and made a slow curving journey to a back closet-like area.  I went through the closet area and into another gallery.  It was miniscule and decrepit and my work was there.  It was not even hung on the walls, it was placed face up on cheap metal shelves, and two of the pieces by the door had paperwork thrown on top of them...bills of sale for artwork sold from the front gallery.

That's neat ending, no punchlines, no redemptive glow at the conclusion...just this, and the shitty feeling of self doubt it left in its wake.

I remember once hearing an interview with Dustin Hoffman on NPR.  He was talking about how full of self-doubt he it's been a very long time since I've heard that interview, but I remember him describing his feelings, and sometimes when I have dreams like this, it's good to remember that people like Hoffman have similar feelings.