Le retour à la normale… ah ouin?

Back to normal… yeah?

Since March we’ve been faced with the complete explosion of our routines and there was just no normal anymore. If we’ve been lucky enough to be pretty much spared by the pandemic for now, our lives were still upended considering the school closing and the kids being at home for weeks, if not months.

Since March, routine and pretty much the whole idea of normality have all but disappeared. We were relatively lucky in that there still is very few cases in our region, but we are still being cautious and have had to rebuilt our routines around this new reality. This was even harder for our children who only have a moderate grasp on this whole pandemic thing and who came home in March not knowing they wouldn’t see their friends for several weeks.

I don’t know how to say this politely, but GTFO!

My own kids didn’t go back to school until last week, and I can tell you that stress was at an all time high! In the end everything went well, all three kids thrilled to be back in school. Well… the teenager probably doesn’t care all that much for it, but he’s going all the same! None of them enjoy the whole « put it on, take it off » mask game that’s being played, but it’s such a small price to pay to be social again.

So things are getting back to normal for me, the work at home mother. Back are the gloriuous silence and calm that are so important to my creative process. Except nothing is normal anymore… and should everything just fall back into place after what we’ve all been through? Can it?

If life is slowly going on again after months of fear, anxiety is a clingy companion that’s not very interested in taking its leave.

Would you like a cup of coffee before going home? Three cups later, everyone in their pyjamas… some pie… and it is STILL HERE. You know what I’m talking about, we’ve all had people over who just can’t take subtle hints… or blunt requests.


Why am I going on about this right now? Because what hit me the most once the kids boarded their school bus was the speed at which my brain started making lists and plans for all the 158 things I just ABSOLUTELY HAD to do right this instant before having to go get them from school for lunch, the lunch I had to make to feed them with before driving them back and then everything I HAD TO DO before they got home again.

Breathing, taking some time to take back control and enjoy my first moments alone in months… nope, that’s never on the list and you know it.

Me? I’m doing just fine!

Of course, once I sat with all my things, my planner, my sketchbook and all of that FREE TIME… I had nothing. No inspiration, only the intense anxiety, right there, mocking me.

« Awww, how cute, you thought you were going to get stuff done… nope! Let’s talk about how you’re an abject failure because you kids are now in school without enough masks and protection AND you’ve just spent MONTHS saying you were going to be SO productive once they went back to school and LOOK AT YOU NOW! You have no talent!! »

Performance anxiety, impostor syndrome and stress… really an awesome cocktail to completely fail at finding some inspiration. It’s almost fall, it is THE season for knitting and crochet… new patterns MUST be written… they simply MUST!

Yeah, no.

Inspiration needs space and time (and boy do I have some fun stuff coming) and while I force myself to actually take the time to let inspiration come my way, I might as well revisit my already published patterns… also, all the fan art. ALL OF IT! Lots of fun, but not really paying gigs… and I’m not sure I care? If a regular 9 to 5 job was causing me all this anxiety, would I even stay there? So I’m going to make sure to be an AWESOME boss to myself and give me some leave to take on these inspiring things… and we’ll see whatever comes next.

In the end, it’s better to take the time to build a NEW normal instead of makin oneself sick with the pressure to act like everything is suddenly back to normal. Especially when « normal » actually kills your creativity.

Parce qu’avant tout créé doit faire du bien!

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