Now I have this ongoing conversation with myself about my creative pursuits -- what I want to do and how on earth I plan to do it. It's not easy. The work set before me includes taking care of Lily and Adam and our home, but I also feel strongly pulled to write and take photographs and fill my life with beautiful things.
What I struggle with is how to do it all. I'm aware that I already do a lot more than most, especially new moms. Taking care of a baby is a lot of work, even when you have an easy baby like Lily. But I'm troubled by this need to channel my creativity into something tangible.
At times I wish I could give it all up, but like Madeleine L'Engle writes in Walking On Water, "an artist is someone who cannot rest" (p. 10). L'Engle echoes the ideas in Elizabeth Gilbert's TED talk about creativity, which I wrote about for the Curator. They both affirm that you must do your work and do it daily, and if you do eventually the work will come together as it should:
We must work every day, whether we feel like it or not; otherwise when it comes time to get out of the way and listen to the work, we will not be able to heed it. (p. 18)Still, being a new mom doesn't afford me time for daily work on my art, whatever it might be (except the 365 project, which only requires about five minutes of any given day). So I struggle on. Thankfully, I came across the following list, part of the Artist's Survival Kit, and find in it the encouragement to keep going (particularly because I struggle with #1 and 10).
So tell me, how do you grapple with being an artist?