You’ve heard for years “You don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone.” I learned something recently. Sometimes you don’t know what you lost until you get it back. I was at Hobby Lobby a few weeks ago with my daughter. She was taking entirely too long (from my perspective) to pick out yarn, so I was just kind of wandering around. I was in the art section, and looking at paint thinking how much I enjoyed painting when I was a teenager. It fell to the wayside once I made several new friends that I was hanging out with a lot, and definitely once I got a guitar. But as I was standing there, I decided that maybe I would dabble in painting again. I certainly never was (and still am not) good at drawing. I’m not being overly critical of myself in that area. I got somewhat better at drawing through drafting, and doing rough sketching, but that came from actual training. And it’s all really simple stuff too like a really basic bookshelf or table. Painting was different though. I think I had a fair amount of talent that would have improved over time. Had I pursued it, that is.
I really didn’t give much more thought to that, but I did buy some paper and watercolor thinking I would like to give it another go. I haven’t done anything with it, but the desire is there. And maybe it won’t end up like that drawer full of jewelry making items that I stopped messing with. I do have a tendency to attempt things and then lose interest. Case in point, crochet, knitting, and that sewing machine that hasn’t seen use in years. My daughter picked up and took off with crocheting, and is way better than I am. I found knitting much easier, but I may be a bit too ADD for all the stitch counting and trying to remember whether or not I’m doing a purl stitch in the middle of a row.
A couple weeks ago, I had the urge to write poetry. Like painting, I haven’t dabbled with that since I was a teenager. The thought of actually finding my old dabblings half terrifies me, but again, it’s another thing that just fell to the wayside. At the time, it was my way of working through a loss. I suppose my blogging over the years has had the same sort of therapeutic purpose, though the really deep and painful things go in my paper and ink journal. But much of that I did either semi-superficially (the blog) or sporadically (the journal) when things got really crazy in my life.
Now I have been known to overdramatize to an extent some of what I write. It’s a gift. My poetry epiphany, though, isn’t. It was a dramatic realization that I have something back that I had lost though my years of self-medicating – my dreams. I described it to my therapist this way, “I feel like a teenager again without all the teenager crap.” That little bit of ideological wonder that I had before I started numbing and turning cynical.
It’s like I have myself back – the self I didn’t allow myself to have, or allowed to have. The child I couldn’t be when I was a child.