My grandpa died this February after a long and arduous battle with Alzheimer’s Disease. While it wasn’t unexpected, his death hit me hard and the grief and loss have made it difficult for me to continue with my blog and with the work I do in the personal development industry. I’m hanging in for now, and here are some things no one will tell you about grief.
A journal excerpt from about a month ago. This will probably be expanded to an essay at some point.
This post is an unedited, stream of consciousness about grief, death, and losing a loved one. I’m posting the content with minimal edits to give you the most intimate view of what losing a loved one does to your brain that I can. There will be followup posts in the coming weeks. This was written March 15.
My grandpa died three weeks ago today. It doesn’t feel like that long, but it also feels like an eternity since then. I feel like I was living some other life even though I’m basically doing the same things for the same reasons.
The TL; DR version of this post:
I’m switching gears in my online work to focus on creating premade graphics packages for bloggers and entrepreneurs and print on demand products through Zazzle and FineArt America. So, the blog is going to become a complement to that and focus on art journaling experiments, resources for designers and artists, and the occasional topic of interest.
I’ll keep the blog schedule largely the way it is for now because I don’t think it’s possible to segregate art from the life of the artist. Tuesday there might be a second post for me to talk casually about whatever is on my mind. Wednesday is for blogging and writing tips. The general leaning of the blog is just going to be more art-related than it has been.
I’m keeping Wednesday mostly because I feel like the blogging information is relevant anybody who would be on this site looking for stuff anyway. And, most often you can still expect me to share Feminist Friday content when I have it.
The Much Longer “What’s Been Going on with Rose” Version of the Post.
If you’ve been following me anywhere else on the Internet, you already know that my grandpa died in February.
It wasn’t unexpected, but it’s been devastating. There have been a series of other family problems since then.
What you may not know — or may not remember — is that my brother almost died last February, and my physical health has been declining steadily since last summer. On top of that, I took a bad fall in September and I didn’t realize how bad or how long-lasting the problems would be until it was December and I realized I was still waking up in pain every night.
We won’t mention the US elections in November or the subsequent political landscape.
I fell again this weekend, and messed up my shoulder worse than it already was.
Lately, I’ve felt like a pinball in my personal life.
Online, I’ve spent a lot of time on activism and social justice projects.
I’ve really enjoyed the consulting and coaching work that I’ve done since last February, but with my health and everything else going on in my life, I don’t feel that I can give enough time and emotional energy to that type of client.
Although I love blogging, my blog hasn’t been a priority for about a year and half now. I didn’t mean for that to happen, but things have changed a lot since I started on WordPress. I thought seriously about just turning the blog into a static website and letting it sit.
I spent this March and April trying to figure out if that’s really what I wanted to do. I decided that I don’t want to shut the blog down, but I need to make a pretty drastic pivot if I’m going to continue.
Four years ago, when I got on WordPress, I had two intentions. I wanted to write about social justice issues, and I wanted to connect with other fantasy and science fiction writers. I formed a lot of great friendships in the intervening time, but the truth is that I spend more time interacting with those friends on social media channels than I do on WordPress anymore. As far as social justice, it’s always going to be important to me, but I didn’t realize how much it would cost me in terms of time, energy, and emotional well-being to blog about those issues on a daily or weekly basis.
I finally hit the wall last week and realized that it’s time for me to start getting paid to do social justice work if I’m going to do it at all. I used to think that it was “too important” to worry about whether I was getting paid to do it or not, but I don’t have unlimited resources or energy. So, I’ve made a decision.
I’ll continue to support and promote social justice projects like the Feminist Friday discussions on Part-Time Monster and anything else that my blogging friends throw my way, and I’ll have a post every now and then, but otherwise I’ll be looking for paid writing opportunities and working on building my own site for child abuse and sexual assault survivors with a self-sustaining model.
For the time being, I’m going to reinvent the Evil Genius Blog as primarily an art blog with Intersectional Feminist leanings. The schedule will stay the same for now, with maybe some additional content on weekends, and the focus will be “Art with purpose”
I see purpose being a lot of different things. Whether it’s practical, as in the merchandise and selling, political as in art as resistance or personal as in using art as an outlet and a way to heal.
If you’re intrigued, stick around. If not, no hard feelings. Go ahead and unfollow. I’ll see you around the interwebs.
So, Abigail Breslin is starring in a remake of the iconic 80s movie, Dirty Dancing. Now, Dirty Dancing is a cornerstone of my childhood. For good and bad. I liked it the first 12 or so times. Then my sister started watching it every day for years. Now it’s like torture. Despite my ongoing fantasy affair with Patrick Swayze.
So, I lost my mind last weekend. Broke down crying (No reason. All the reasons.) Couldn’t get my shit together all day. Kept crying, screaming, what-have you.
These are some process-art I did while trying to get through that.
I suppose most of my friends would recommend written journaling but it doesn’t work for me in those situations and just causes more exhaustion/emotional distress rather than any kind of cathartic “healing” event like people say.
I’ll show you what I did with these in the next couple of weeks.
I’ve said before that my “art journaling” is more like a digital sketchbook charting the progress of things than what most people think of, which to me is “collaging” and doesn’t give me any sense of emotion.
The Orange Troll has broken my brain and I haven’t journaled much except for Tarot practice. Not really comfortable sharing that yet. I’ve decided to stop #Journalshare for the time being. This will be the last one. Here, though, is the culmination of that experiment I’ve been doing for the past few weeks.
No insightful commentary this time, but I am looking for a few people to test some products for me in the crafting and digital scrap niche. If that’s you, drop me a comment here.
Most folks were doing “year in review” posts a couple of weeks ago, but my blog was on my hiatus, so I decided to make up for it by posting some “year end” stuff early in January.
Last week’s post was more general, an overview of 2016’s suckage and triumphs.
Today’s is a look at my writing projects and what I set out to do versus what ended up happening.
I’m still experimenting with that technique I tried last week. Short version is it’s not what I was after, so I’m starting with something else. These are bases I made for the next effort. Results to come next week. No great insights right now!
Most folks were doing “year in review” posts in mid-December, but my blog was on my hiatus, so I decided to make up for it and post a review now. Warning: you may need a nap after reading this.
Twenty-Sixteen was one of the most difficult years of my life, up to and including the year I was homeless. My brother nearly died. I nearly died. I’ve had more pain and swelling in my lower body than I can remember. The US has elected a fascist, and as a woman with a disability, I feel vulnerable and voiceless (though I know that I am not, in fact, voiceless.)