Originally posted on my art blog (which it has turned out I have never had time for) almost one year ago.
I have given every ounce of artistic and creative energy I have to my children since the first one was born.
My reasons for doing this:
They need(ed) me. Every minute they were awake. So I needed to make it fun for me.
I have to have a creative outlet.
Art brings me joy and if I am happy and enjoying what I am doing, they will be happy.
I wanted to give them a childhood full of happy memories.
I wanted to give them a childhood full of unusual memories.
I wanted them to learn about art, because not much of it is taught in schools anymore.
I wanted to teach them about art in a unique, fun way. Many times in ways that were not in our studio.
I feel I have a unique gift or even simply a unique desire to teach my children about art, and doing this has unleashed more creativity in me than I have ever felt in any other artistic endeavor.
I want to fill every aspect of our lives with art, most likely to fill the hole in my own life. The gaping hole of not sitting in front of paints and wood. But it has not only filled that hole in my life, it has made it overflow. It is enough to just do art with my children. I feel no saddness about not doing my own art.
And so we come to the title of my post. Stealing. I cannot escape the feeling that anything I do for just myself is somehow stealing from my children. They are small. They need me, and at no other time in my life will it be more important to be with them than right now. I will never regret time or energy given to them.
But then again. Are they so small? Yes. I mean no. I mean, yes. We've changed, as a family. Literally overnight. Some of my children are not so small, and need me a little less. So today, I took a few minutes from my duties to creating a happy, clean environment for my family, and I drew this self portrait.
And I felt so fulfilled. And happy. And a little frustrated because I cannot quite make the lines do what I want them to. Made me feel like making a cake for Picasso. Because we would all be happy about that. And we would all be fulfilled.
And I think of the time in a few years when they will all be in school. And no one will be begging me to do "projects!" with them. No one will be asking about which artists birthday we are celebrating. And the art studio will be clean.
And those thoughts, fill me with indescribable loneliness. So I realize, I must start to draw and paint for myself again. A little here or there. Because one day I will need it. When my little ones no longer need me. I know it won't be as fulfilling. But I know that I will always need art.
**Edit: I know so many people who have struck the balance between being an artist and a mother - being an artist independent of their children. I envy them. We have no balance in that respect - which, as I said is totally fine for me. All of our situations and children are unique, and our solutions will all be different, yet beautiful. I in no way think my life is the answer for everyone, it is just the only solution I can come up with for now to keep us all happy. And it will change and evolve, because that is what life is about, right?
2 months ago