life with an ostomy. candid, not sugar-coated. empowered, not embarrassed.

Mar. 31, 2010

Crying over spilled milk

I've gone and made the mistake of getting worked up over money, when really, I have all the money I need. I have this part-time job with an eldery woman. It's normally okay. Sometimes it blows, but I get to eat a good meal each night I work with her, and it pays well enough. Not super-stimulating or challenging, but it's all I need for money right now.

Well, I started to treat this other pursuit of mine *like* a job, because it might pay off, financially. I started working on this oral history project for the very interesting neighbourhood I live in - very densely populated, more than 60% of its residents are born outside of Canada and come from all over the place, and it's also closed in on all sides by highway, railroad tracks, and a big long 'apartheid' fence and hedge built by the neighbouring affluent community. Anyway - it was for passion's sake that I was doing this project. But then I also tried to get funding for it.

A certain unnamed city museum became really interested in my project and started working with me to get some funding for it. A museum representative piggy-backed on to a meeting I set up with my local politician and presented a very quickly put-together funding proposal with his museum's fancy letterhead, and my name at the bottom. There's a lot more to it than this, but after several weeks have passed, it looks like that museum will get the funding. And it also looks like they are cutting me out of the project  - or at least I am so far being left in the dark by them. IT MAKES ME REALLY ANGRY. And I feel like this was an underhanded move on the museum's part. I feel like the work I have begun doing is really important and my project deserves funding. But at the same time, I feel like getting funding could make my project a sell-out. That is, I could concentrate more on what the funders want, rather than follow my own original passion and impulses. And the project would (perhaps was already veering in the direction of) feeling more like work than a labour of love.

So, yes I am ANGRY and UPSET about the way I've been treated by the museum guy. (although at the same time, I do not know definitively he is cutting me out, he could just be busy and non-communicative). But also, I want to challenge myself to take a breather and get back to the original impulse for the project.

The money is not important. I will create value for myself by doing something that I feel is valuable. Pursuing money started to feel really invaluable to me.

But here is a fear... I am a 30 year-old woman devoting herself to something that others may not value or appreciate. Wait! Good for me!! I am doing it because *I* want to do it. Stick with that, girl! Fuck the funders. They are self-interested anyway. Unless they see me as doing something that will benefit them, they will not be interested. Okay, fine. I will do whatever has value to me, and if that has no value to them, fuck 'em. Ha!

I have told a lot of neighbourhood people about the project, and there is a lot of interest so far. I tell people I will have it done for a certain date, and I say that so I have pressure to actually finish it. But I must keep in mind, this is *my* project. My ideas, my editorial control, my final documentary. And it's also new territory for me. This is exciting. Go with it. I have three months to devote to this, as I want to have it done by the end of June. Good.

Now, at the same time, I need to treat this as one project amongst many. Which it is.

I have been held up for months on my Artist's Way course and I know it's because I'm avoiding my little problem of workaholism. That's a funny problem for an anti-capitalist to have, isn't it??

All those things I wrote about in my last post, I want to bring back to the forefront of my life. I want to pay attention to that which I have put on the backburner because of my silly little obsession with being taken seriously by people in power. Which I think is at the root of my workaholism, and you know, clearly relates to mommy issues.

So here's a recap of all the things I wrote about in the last post, and an update on how it's been going:

Choir: since it's weekly, I do it. It's rad. I love it. Okay, I am not in love with all the religious songs we are singing, but my voice and music skills are thriving. It really showed when I went out and sang karaoke in a bar this past Saturday. I had the whole room clapping and singing along to my version of CCR's Looking out my Backdoor. I was dancing and doing my honky tonk voice and stomp, and at one point a harmonica-playing dude jumped outta nowhere and joined me!

Harmonica: It's not as often as what I'd like, but I super enjoyed playing with my little sister while I was back home visiting. She played guitar, then piano, and since she is so skilled, she supported my playing 100%. And, since we trust each other so much, it was just pure freedom. So so fun.

Getting fit and focused at the Y: Yes, I would like to go slightly more often. But each day I go, including today, I feel energized and hawt.

Writing, for me, for some papers: I have been raking in much more than usual this past month with freelancing gigs. The stories take up too much time sometimes, and sometimes I like doing them, sometimes they are lame. I really liked writing about the collective kitchen organization that runs just down the street from me. In fact, I was thinking I might join a group. Anyway - writing for myself gets the big thumbs down. Fail!! Well, one good thing was when a friend and I gave each other deadlines for out personal writing projects. He was having a hard time getting started on his project, and I was having a hard time getting going on my creation story. So, well. Maybe it's time to do that deadline for each other again.

Playing with paints, other arty stuff: a little bit. I made my hubby a beautiful postcard and poem and mailed it to him. That was the last project. I'm more than due for another.

Speaking my french, ecouter, parler le francais: Yeah, it goes.

Feeding the birds: No, I did not do this.

Gettin' hitched, dreaming creatively about it, making plans for the party: Yes, it is going okay. I would rate it at 50%. My mom shot down my idea to have her and my mother-in-law carrying me and my sweetie in using seperate wheelbarrows. (yeah, so feel free to take that idea and run). I haven't yet figured out what flowers to grow for the ceremony. But! Yes I did buy my dress just the other day! And I love it and this it's sweet and sexy and very me.

Seeking out storytellers from my neighbourhood and recording them: Yes - it's all starting big time this Saturday, and I will do a bit of filming for eight full days!

Planting stuff: Bought lots of heritage seeds, planted some early stuff - eggplant and red pepper. And have been enjoying digging through worm compost and mixing last summer's soil with the worm castings. Very relaxing! A friend joined me one day and it was good for both of us.

Seeking women I like. Talking shamelessly, digging, exploring, loving: Yeah, I would say I could do more in this department. But some developments have been made.

Taking time for meditation - how long will this Buddhist thing last: I want to do tomorrow night, but don't know if I will get off work in time. If I ask, she will let me go.