Dear Future Jenn

Dear Future Jenn,

I know you’ll look back in a few years time and think ‘What the Hell was I thinking?’ You’ll be feeling guilty that you spent your spare time drawing, and it’ll probably be the only thing that you’ll really remember from this period in your life.

But, try to push that strange, guilty feeling of ‘I didn’t do enough,’ aside and try and remember a few other points.

Like, most of the time it feels like you’re in this alone. Sure, you’re married and have a loving, caring husband – but during the day it’s just you. Doing everything. On your own. There wasn’t anyone you can impose upon a ten minute walk away to get things off your mind, or hand Marcus over to play with for a while so you can clear your thoughts – it was just you and the house and the dog and Marcus.

Also, remember you went to baby groups three or four times a week to play with different toys and so that Marcus could interact with children his own age and start being a social little Mr. And, because of the choices you made, you got to be a part of that and enjoy that time with him. Not everyone gets to witness their child growing up and to personally take them to such places – this was a good thing for the both of you and don’t worry too much that you didn’t get close to any other Mums, you were there for your son during his formative years.

Remember that you tried to make the most of the time you had together; remember the trials and the anger and the guilt, but remember more that you did your best. Yes, you did a lot of drawing during this time, but that was a sort of therapy to you. You drew because it helped you to forget that you felt lonely and isolated – drawing for people online made you feel like there were people that you could talk too; even if it was fleeting it helped you too cope with the trivial day to day struggles that you couldn’t get off your chest any other way.

It was difficult enough, without you beating yourself up over it now.

Also remember, you wrote this on a particularly bad day in the best and worst month in the year, but you got through it again – it won’t always feel this gloomy!


Past Jenn

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Street

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Oh how the ‘mighty’ have fallen.
From my previous photography post to this one. I wish I could blame it all on the weather, but even the most dull weather can look wonderful when taken right.

I’m still waiting to see if my bigger camera will charge up, but thus far I’ve not had any positive results. Not sure what’s wrong with it – if it’s the actual charger or the battery – so this was taken with my point and shoot (Sony Cyber-shot)

I think the hardest part at the moment is remembering to take my camera out with me again. It’s sadly no longer the faithful companion that I once had with me near constantly and with having to remember a whole host of other things every single time I leave the house (Nappies, spare clothes, wipes, nappy bags, milk, bottles, etc) The camera has been the last thing on my mind.

How do young Mum’s with silly photography ambitions manage to remember everything? I mean, I can’t be the only Mum out there that really doesn’t have my shit together! Yet sometimes it seems like it. Like, I’m the only one that forgets to take things with me whenever I go out, or misunderstands someone when they ask something. At times I feel like a complete and utter air head.

Hense why the picture for this Blogging-U course looks like utter turd! Because I snapped something quick while looking through my window, so I didn’t have to pack everything up just for a five minute walk to the end of my street. I guess that means I failed this part of the course?

I’ll have to revisit this particular stage of the course, because I’d like to try and do the theme a bit more justice – even if it means trying to remember that one more thing to take with me when out and about.

Beach – Prompt

The title Beach came as a prompt from The Daily Post

It’s days like today* that you think about the times when life was that little bit easier. What I am learning so far about motherhood is that it’s not actually easy. I was never under the illusion that it would be, but there was the hope that my child would be the one exception to all those rules that no one tells you about.
Today, my son has been crying on and off for nearly seven hours. Needless to say I am currently feeling a bit frazzled and like I am the worlds worst mother for taking a few minutes for myself to go to the toilet while he continues to wail over what seems to be nothing – I am sure it is something, but it seems to me whatever I try just makes it worse… or settles him for a few minutes which gives me the false hope that he might get some rest.

As such I’ve been pretty neglectful of a few other things today; the washing up and other house work, the small list of things I’d like to have done like reading a chapter of the book I am currently trying to get through and the dog.

As it might have been reported, I adore my dog and I feel guilty that he has to spend some days entertaining himself by seemingly staring at nothing on the floor. I was reminded by the ‘Beach’ prompt today of the great time we spent on Formby Beach when he was a mere puppy chasing the foam as it flew past like it was the best thing in the entire world. And I wondered what it would be like if it was just me and the pup again. We’d be free to go on nice spring/summery walks together without having to struggle with the pram – or cross off places that we can’t go as the pram wouldn’t fit or the path would be too muddy or some other such excuse that makes your extremely bad mummy thoughts maybe feel a little bit more justified?

And then you have a moment when your child looks at you and smiles**, and actually the crying really isn’t that bad after all and it’s all worth it.

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*today might not be the day this post is actually published, due to the nature of today.
** Even though the smile was probably just gas

New Life

So recently, everything about my life has changed. All for the better I might add rather hastily.

After a 10 month womb infestation I finally got rid of the parasite that was lurking inside me and making my stomach all big and swollen! I cannot tell you how much of a relief that really is! No more bloated feeling, no more feeling like I can’t eat a decent meal, no more running to the toilet every five minutes to relieve the pressure on my bladder!

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Of course, I say all the above purely in jest. I was actually just pregnant and feeling the woes of it all towards the end. Little Marcus was form 16 days overdue and after much trauma of inductions and trying to be squeezed, and I quote the midwife. ‘Putting a square peg through a round hole.’  So he was born by C-Section on the 30th of March. And after a 6 day stay in hospital (Before and after birth) I was more than ready to come home and start getting life back to the new sense of normal.
There was much crying and guilty feelings because my dog wasn’t at home – I think it was just baby blues being somewhat misdirected towards the missing pack member, but it was really strange going for the first walk without him. I even had dreams in which he was depressed; which was so far from the truth it’s unbelievable! He was staying with my Father-in-Law and his best friend Paddy, so he was fine and being a bit of a terror.

So we jump to today, and it’s my first day on my own with baby Marcus (Who is currently asleep) and Barley (Who is also asleep) and I am feeling a new sense of resolve to try and get things creative done. Pre-Birth I felt a bit low about pretty much everything and motivation felt like the hardest thing to come across ever. So I did pretty much nothing apart from the smallest scrap of cross-stitching ever (Which I managed to bork!)

But post-birth, I have already started to readdress Born to Die and rework it using the Snowflake Method. I’ve not gotten that far with it mostly due to the amount of busy with commission3_copy_by_the_zombie_cat_by_kiz_mit-d9ozsohbaby I have been; but I am feeling good about it non-the-less.

I’m also determined to find my graphics tablet and attempt to do some digital paintings, seeing as it feels like it has been forever and a day since I did any. I think it has actually been some years, so it feels about right that I should attempt some again. Especially now that the whole ‘art career’ thing is pretty much off the cards. I can paint because I enjoy it again. Which will be a novelty!

Until I get anything done myself, enjoy this picture of Nathaniel by The-Zombie-Cat, somehow she just manages to get the look in his expression perfect!

On a hobby note, I ordered some of the Genestealer Hybrids from the Deathwatch Overkill board game to replace my current Psyker Battle Squad. I was using actual Genestealers for them, but they never really looked how I wanted them too; they’re too far gone in the whole Xeno’s taint thing! But the ones from the board game are near abouts perfect for the idea of them. So, under the delusion that I will get the time to make them up and paint them, I brought some off ebay. Hopefully, I’ll get some time to dedicate to hobby stuffs again, seeing as it has been far too long since I did anything model related. I shall keep you informed on how I get along!

The space

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Just a picture of the artworking space, as promised in my last post.

And a couple of sneaky peaks at the paintings I am currently working on – which is why it looks like a mess already!

Also, I mentioned a Skillshare Course that I was going to be undertaking and would report back on. This one is by Kitty Wynter. I did a general search for Abstract Art on the Skillshare website and her course one came up.

It was actually a pretty basic course and while it had some interesting ideas shared with viewers it wasn’t the best of courses on the site. However, it did have an interesting painting technique that I’d not thought about trying out before, so I’ve been working on implementing that today.
However, watching someone stick some old book pages to a canvas wasn’t the most thrilling piece of viewing and I admit the ‘Eye painting’ section wasn’t the most polished either and I ended up skipping most of that particular video – especially after the whole gluing pages thing.

Still, it was worth the viewing just to pick up a few hints and tips.

I’ll have to have another look over the site to see which course I fancy taking a gander at next. I know I saved a few to my list of courses a while back, but I will have to see if they currently apply to my interests and my growth journey plans and all that.
I think a fair amount of them were all about businesses and social media, but to be completely honest I would rather focus on actually making and creating artworks before undertaking that gigantic task again. Enjoy the artwork and create because it’s what I’d like to do rather than what it feels like I must do.

In other news – because I have found that sharing things on my blog has really helped lately – I’ve had this problem with my jaw clenching. Both at night (I vaguely remember feeling like I am prying my jaws apart) and during the day – where my jaw seems to randomly tense together, regardless of what I do. I’ve tried simple relaxation techniques, little massage ideas that I’ve read about and even silly suggestions like putting my tongue between my jaws (Which actually just ends up in me biting my tongue)
I’m off to boots/tesco tonight to get a mouth guard to see if that helps in anyway at all before taking the leap to actually go to the Dr’s about it, as I get the feeling it’ll all just be down to stress/anxiety and baby hormones; as it’s gradually gotten worse over the duration of my pregnancy. Ugh. As if everything else wasn’t bad enough I have to put up with biting my tongue and mouth constantly.

Another thing non-art related! Barley has hurt his foot and is making a display of limping about the house, so there might be a vet trip on the cards as well. He’s currently being watched like a hawk for improvements or if it gets any worse, or… anything of the sort really.

Until next time~

The new start

I am currently standing at the forefront of the biggest change in my life. I am six weeks away from giving birth (Roughly, as we can never really predict these things exactly) to my first child.
I am in a stable and very loving relationship with my husband – we’ve been together for nearly 9 years, and married since 2014. We brought our house in march 2015 and made the addition of a dog, Barley, to our family not long after. He is currently upstairs asleep on the bed after a very tiring hour long walk this morning!

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(Curled up, mid-yawn)

And yet.
I cannot help but feel utterly lost and confused with myself. I’ve never been a serious ‘Go-getter’ when it comes to a career, just someone who flits about from job to job wondering what I am going to do with my life. I am still trying to have this conversation with myself even though I am going to be having a baby really soon.
“What is my ideal career?” or “When am I going to do something meaningful with my life?” and I really need to stop stressing about it, because now really isn’t the right time to be worrying about it all and over thinking it.

Actually, more importantly, I’d just like to be able to find a little bit of myself again. At the moment I feel so blank. I spend silly amounts of time reading sad posts about dogs on facebook and making myself upset. It’s really not healthy! So, I need to have a change of heart and find myself again.

I’ve always been interested in the creative arts – I have a rather large collection of materials up on my top floor, but I’ve never really felt at home creatively. If I sat in front of a canvas or piece of paper right now I wouldn’t have much of a clue on where to start or what I would even like to create. I have had input and support from family, but a lot of the time it comes across as criticism; it’s not always the case I am sure, but it feels a lot like being judged or told that I can do better – in the ways of making money from my artwork. Which is a step I have never felt ready for, and thus I put it all down again and go back to being pretty much a nothing. Uninspired and absolutely flat.

I have tried and looked at ways of breaking through blocks via the means of self help books and the likes, but generally they don’t really speak to me. I find them all a little bit spiritual and hippyish, which is something I don’t really feed into aside from lighting a nice smelling candle every now and again to get rid of any doggy odor!

So while I was having a lie down earlier today, I was wondering what I can really do to help myself get out of this dead-end slump. How can I connect to myself a bit more and feel a little happier with my life, even at this horrendously late stage in my pregnancy? I have heard that just writing about thoughts and feelings can help, so I thought why not start a blog going? What’s the worst that can happen? I could find some people I can connect too, look at other artists here on wordpress and see what happens.
I am a bit of a wordpress newbie, but it’ll be good to be able to see what others create and if I can maybe feel a little inspired along the way. Who knows where this will go exactly. I have tried keeping a diary before and it’s not always gone down too well, but this might be a bit different seeing as it has a community behind it all.

It’ll be nice to meet and talk with some of you, be it about impending motherhood, parental advice or anything artistic and creative.

A new start online as well as in life.