Monday, September 21, 2009

Rain, Rain Go Away, Come Again Another YEAR

A HUGE Kavarna mocha (with whipped cream) in the Chicago skyline mug (I stopped on the way home from dropping J off at school), "Lay Me Down" by Crosby & Nash on iTunes. There are so many possible titles for this post, but after long consideration I decided to go with the rain theme. Had I posted on Saturday as I almost did, the title would have been "The Chaos Being Has Left the Building" and though it might be a catchier title, today is mostly about the rain.

Got Dave off to the airport for another week in Austin this morning, and then finished cleaning the kitchen, making J's breakfast, packing her lunch and getting her off to school. I was lucky and missed heavy rain (only seeing a drizzle) during both of the morning's drives. But it's a wet and wild world out there with all northbound lanes blocked on I-85 due to an accident (saw notice for this on the way to the airport) and a tree down at the Seminary across from J's school blocking the street--and the carpool/drop-off lane for the school--completely. Had to toss her out into the road and just keep driving (just kidding--I did stop).

When I got home--and I'm not going out again till I have to pick her up from school--I decided to take advantage of the continuing break in the rain and get the portable pump set up in the crawlspace under the studio. I looked down there last week and it was flooded again (glad I didn't get around to replacing the hot water heater). I should've braved the deluges over the weekend though as when I looked in today there was over *five feet* of standing water--all the way to the top of the dugout part. Sadly this means that the furnace is now partly (mostly?) underwater. I shudder to think what THAT's going to cost. As I set up the pump, it started to rain again. I'll just leave it running today and see how far down it gets. It'll take at least two days to get all that water out. *sigh*.

Enough about the rain, let's talk about chaos beings. I have come to the mid-life realization that I am such a one. Before I was married there was no one to notice, comment upon, stress about the pace that I (un)naturally kept. Once I had a partner, I started the litany of "after I/we finish this project, things will slow down", but they never did. There was always something new we had to do, someplace we had to go or move to, a new job to take, a child to have, SOMETHING. Up till this past weekend I figured it was just bad luck or timing--or my inability to say no when asked to do/give something. Saturday morning as I breakfasted with a spouse made very unhappy by Friday's post, I realized that it's all me: When things start to slow down and I have a less-than-totally-consuming task, I add to its complication and difficulty till I am appropriately consumed.

Current point in case is the opening of Siyeh Studio as a Kiln-Glass Resource Center. When I initially decided to do it, I wasn't going to add much inventory, I wasn't going to have formal retail hours, and I wasn't going to offer any classes right away. By this past weekend I not only found myself with a full class schedule (thank heavens I am not teaching it all), an expanded retail selection (now taking up a full room in the studio), a dedicated beadmaking classroom with all its attendant paraphernalia, and a hotshop whose equipment I had doubled to be able to have two simultaneous gloryholes and benches for teaching. I was embroiled in storyboarding the safety and demo videos for the classes (for heaven's sake!), designing new classes, negotiating distributorships--in short, spending time and money as if they were water. And it's too bad they AREN'T water as with all the rain we have, I could goldplate all my tools and work 938 hours a day and still have some left over.

What was I doing? And, more importantly, why? Why? Because I am a chaos being. I like the spontaneous, the unpredictable, the surprise and change. When I got stressed when I was younger and footloose, I'd take a roadtrip. Maybe I'd go from Phoenix to LA for the weekend--or the day. Drive all night to sleep on the beach during the day and drive home for work the next day. Or I'd move to Colorado on a whim for the winter--or Austin on a similar whim for the summer. If I had a problem, I didn't try to sit down and fix it, I'd leave it behind instead. Right here and now is the longest I have lived anywhere since I was 17 and kicked the dust of the same address for my whole life to date from my heels. It's not that I didn't like where I grew up--I moved back twice in the six years after I first moved and would probably be there again now had I not been snared by my spouse while in Chicago.

The addiction to upheaval reached such a state that I didn't even realize what I was doing. But Saturday, I had an epiphany. I *don't* have to have everything I can think of for a perfect KGRC done by October 23. I don't even have to *try* to have it done. I can stage development. Dave told me the name for this process as we were talking Saturday morning--maybe it even was staged roll-out or development. Wow. I feel liberated. I immediately scaled back on the planning and (except for the one this morning about the sump pump in the studio crawlspace) have stopped having anxiety attacks again. Now let's see if I can keep up at slowing down...

"Hi. My name is Brenda, and I'm a slothful adrenaline junkie..."


Bill said...

You JUST noticed this?



I've known this for a long time. I was trying to hint about it on the cruise ship.

Can you remember that far back?

Brenda Griffith said...

Oh you are just mean! Of COURSE I can remember that far back! I remember it as the most splendid vacation ever. All I did was walk, read, eat, um "socialize" and rest. It was magnificent!

Anonymous said...

I've "socialized" a lot in my past too.

Nancy Goodenough

Brenda Griffith said...

Oh Nancy, I know. So does Bill Zweifel and I don't think he'll ever be the same after THAT conversation!

Misha said...

I beg to differ, Herr Doctor. What you describe is not diagnosis, but a symptom. What you truly suffer from is Shiny Rock Syndrome (SRS). "Ohh, look at that / wouldn't that be cool!" And while your attention is diverted, you fail to use what should become your new mantra: "No!"

Being an optimistic Yes Woman, add SRS & your creative passion and you end up looking like an adrenaline junkie. "Slothful" couldn't be farther from the truth -- it's a post hoc emotional response to your human inability to produce what you've committed to -- because you're always busting your beeehind!

SRS prolly will never go away, but No instead of Yes you can do and will curtail overcommitment.