I recently went to connect with someone who I admire, someone who I appreciate seeing on my facebook timeline, and who I am amazed at her strength and sheer determination. It has taken me awhile to sum up the courage to make a deeper connection, a friendship, a real friendship, maybe.
And for the life of me, I cannot find her on my friends list, or on Facebook, for that matter. Assuming she has deleted her facebook, I go to her blog, “From A Cabin Up North” and see that she hasn’t posted since January, and with that post, she outlines similar feelings to what I feel.
The feeling of being, simply ‘Stuck’.
I myself, have been feeling stuck. A different kind of stuck, for I feel it is the ropes that bind my inner being that hold me back. Of course finances play a role in this as well, but something inside me if full of fear, full hesitation, full of question. Here I sit, beside the dog I am watching until Wednesday, feeling the anxiety start to pour in, like sand, slowly filling my body with dread. In the Klondike, in the Yukon, people are slowly becoming readjusted to the light, to the people, and to the need for money. It’s time to start thinking about how I am going to survive another winter up here. I look around and compare, compare with my brother, compare with my boyfriend, compare with my fellow 20 somethings out there who seem to be, well, just plunking along, either in school, or otherwise. And I wonder, “How do they do it?”
I have been told before, that I will have to do jobs that I may not exactly like, or enjoy, to pay the bills. I understand that, but how does one do a ‘shit’ job, when one struggles with convincing herself somedays that her life is worth living another day? Mental Illness can be a strength, but can also be an anchor that weighs down any sense of drive or desire. I have no desire to work a job that makes me miserable, as I feel that I was not put on this planet to simply pay bills. I have no drive to sacrifice the quality of my mental health to scrub toilets, deal with chaotic employers, just to then spend the few hours of the day that I have left counting my pennies and hiding beneath the sheets until the next time that I have to leave the house. Time that could be spent exercising, creating, yoga.
What I want is a healthy blend. A blend of work, art, and self-love. I know it is achievable, but HOW?
How does one do, create, and strive towards something that they believe is what they were put on this earth to do… A job, a career, a lifestyle, that you look forward to everyday (or 90% of the time). I am not asking for instant gratification, I am asking, how does one keep striving toward a goal without being discouraged by life itself?
I was SO excited to venture up north to attend art school. I had studied at schools in Vancouver, (Emily Carr, & Capilano), I worked hard to present a portfolio full of skill and desire to learn. And what I got from “art school” in the Yukon was not desire.
It was disappointment.
Disappointment in the school, in myself, in the curriculum, in the director, and in the direction that my mind and thoughts were going. I had let myself fall to pieces, my confidence sifting to the bottom, while anger, sadness, and exhaustion floated to the top.
I then proceeded to spend the following summer fighting with myself, willing myself, to create, to allow myself to create and to let go of the ideas and values that were placed on me at school, the critiques, the theories, the ignorance, I still am battling with the confusion I gained in the first year of Art School. I am still bitter at the money, the scholarships and bursaries, that were put towards a program that left me raging with anger rather than burning with desire to carry on with my education – They are gone. All gone. I spent countless hours sitting in the class studio fuming internally, observing the lack of organization, communication, and skill set being offered. I came to school to learn, to practice, to create. What I found myself doing was stumbling into politics, anxiety attacks, and a feeling of despair. There was no discipline, no guidance offered in the 2D, 3D, and 4D courses. Myself, like others, felt like they deteriorated rather than grew, while at this institution.
So does one give up after a bad experience? No.
I truly do see that I need to make peace with my experience at Yukon School of Visual Arts.
Do I carry on, and apply to finish my Bachelor of Fine Arts?
Yukon School of Visual Arts has darkened my view of a career in the “Art World” – Do I really want to commit myself to endless hours of rejection, ramen noodles, and conceptual theory? And let’s be honest, hours of infuriating Bullshit?
Do I change my path, and follow other interests, such a wildlife management, first nations history and government, or archaeology?
When will I let the bitter taste leave my mouth, and allow myself to try again, stepping past the fear of failure and disappointment?
Don’t get me wrong, I am SO thrilled to be living in the Yukon, to have my darling apartment on the Dome Road, and to be surrounded by such inspiring people I have met since I have moved here. But how do I gain job security, knowledge, and desire once again?
I need/want a career.
Enough with the spring panic.