A Missing Spark

Scott & Jay asked us the last time we were over if we wouldn't be opposed to handmade gifts for the holidays and I said “Of course not!” This was after I took a couple of deep breaths and thought about what the hell I could actually make someone that wouldn't look a horrible mess.
But now I'm itching to start something new. I don't know quite what it is, but I know it has to do with making something. I can't really paint, draw, or sketch – I just don't have a hand or eye for it. I can't find the brushes I had for Chinese brushpainting and it's too much work for so little outcome. I don't have the money for the tools to try something like pottery or sculpting. Photgraphy . . . that belongs to other people.
I know what I'm going to make for Jay and Scott, I just need to get the stuff. But it's not something I want to make “a lot” of – just for them.

For some reason there's a disconnect between how I see myself and how I really “am.” There's this boring homebody who studies all the time and goes to work when she's not studying. And at, what seems to be, all other times, she's doing housework or grocery shopping. Not exactly the creative, inspired young woman she once was.

I've chosen to cut toxic people out of my life and move on from a couple of nasty relationships. I've set one foot in front of another on the road to being a more ethical, compassionate, understanding, and kind person. I'm not quite there yet, but I'm working on it. Quit drinking, quit drugs long ago. But what's next?

I have a job that I can tolerate, I'm in school (which is an opportunity that I try to remind myself often I'm lucky to have), I have a house I like in a safe neighborhood. I like my housemates, I love my pets, I have good friends. So what's missing? That creative side of me that used to patch things together, make my own purses, and create something out of nothing. She's gone. Where did she go?

I don't have a lot of money, so I have this itch to thrift shop and move the furniture around, donate my clothes and start . . . I don't know . . . just making something.

My plans to have Melody teach me to knit have fallen through a couple of times and, honestly, I'm not sure I've got the patience for it. Or maybe I do and I just don't have to patience to learn. My manager's sister came over and showed me how to use my sewing machine. She said if I ever want help with anything, to just ask. Another guy I work with offered to come over and help me out, as well. He actually used to make and sell clothes. But then Melody and Vanessa have adopted a dog they found in the street, hit by a car. Annie's sister has her own jobs and pets to care for. Jay and Scott just brought home a half-starving dog they found stranded and a cat that was going to be euthanised. Everyone's trying to get pregnant, trying to buy a house, trying to redecorate a house . . . it feels imposing on my end to ask anyone's time to entertain me.

And I've been denying myself simple pleasures for a long time, for fear that it appears I'm not – somehow – “appreciating” what I have. If I go out to eat or to the movies by myself, I feel like it's unfair to Charlie. If I sit down and do something that I enjoy, I feel like what I should be doing is studying. So I don't do it. Well, I think it's time for a change. I've told myself that if I spend a couple of hours with a tutor in the math lab tomorrow preparing for my Thursday exam, then I'm allowed to go to either Borders or the library and find some books on crafty crap. We'll see if anything sparks.

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