Monday, April 25, 2011

Layla Sleeps = Mommy Writes

Abandoned - my previous attempt at a blog post about the ( im )possibility of mothers being artists. That draft has sat there, waiting for me to come back to it, for 2 weeks now... In the meantime, I made a new friend: Elsabe Milandri - also an artist and a mama with a very young and busy toddler. Besides these two things we share, we also both have less than perfect living conditions - and the tiniest of makeshift studios. And, boy, do I mean tiny... But: in chatting to her, she handed me, on a golden plate, the epiphany I've long been hunting blindly for since Layla was born: "Use your limitations to your explicit advantage: make small works and exhibit with pride your ability to transcend what others as limitations. Use your creativity to turn your limitations into your wings. Fly!"

One of my biggest 'wings' is poverty.
1. Poverty - literally. Because I am not working, our life on my husband's teacher's salary sometimes feels a little dismal: but, in TRUTH, our life is so much richer for the life we give Layla through my constant, responsive mothering. These few short years investing our love, energy and time into her will pay such special dividends later on, when I will be earning money for us, and missing her magnificent presence around me: not like my shadow, but my sun.
2. Poverty of time. Because I am the kind of mother that is fanatically devoted to her child's development (amidst the irritable sighs of others) it means that the only time I really have to do anything for myself (brush teeth, dye eyebrows, draw etc) is when The Angel sleeps. (Hence why I have already been interrupted no less than 5 times between 12pm and 7.42pm trying to write this post!) But: I am not going to give up trying to find the flipside-positive of this time-absence thing! (What being a mother HAS taught me is to honour the time I do have: I no longer fart-arse around in perpetual procrastination! How could I have wasted all those 31 years of lazy lie-ins?! Now I grab life and my opportunities by the balls (however sporadically!) So - thank you, Layla, my baby!

(And now I have to say goodbye: time has fled!)

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