Nitty Gritty Sweaty Summer Night Update

I hate to say this outloud in the wide world web and somehow jinx it, but I can’t believe how good my life is right now.

By good, I don’t necessarily mean easy or constant pleasant sensations.

More just that I’m resisting myself less and less each month. In that mulchy, juicy process of abandoning words like “should” or “success” or “supposed to be” all sorts of beautiful things are growing.

This time last year I was scrambling to hold together a relationship I was surrounding with a barricade of those words and phrases, coping with my mom’s health uncertainty and crying to strangers in airports on my weekly flights to Florida, and crying over print deadlines at work and then crying again over the fact that they made me cry. And totally artistically uninspired.

But let’s skip the contemplation and get to the nitty gritty.

Did I win the business plan competition? No. But really and truely I was fine with it. I’ve already raised half the amount of money I would of gotten from it (which was $10,000 split between 9 people it turns out, not $10,000 each) in business sponsorships for the season. I have a solid business plan. I have what I want. And, there were really good cream puffs at the dinner.

Did I find a job? Yes. My dream was to never have to leave Mt. Airy during the day. And I got it! I have two part time gigs that are both work from home with flexible hours. And, it turns out, that I’m getting paid well enough between the two that I’ll be making the same salary I’ve been making at Bread & Roses, but spending less with no commute and being able to eat from home. What? What.

One job is working part time for Independent Television Service (ITVS)–which you probably know for their films they screen on PBS on the show Independent Lens–coordinating their community cinema program.

Coordinating film screens for pay=dream job.

Dream job=current reality.

The other job is working part time for Digital Divide Data, which you may have read about it Thomas Friedman’s book. The people are great. It doesn’t hurt my brain or my heart. And I get to work in my pjs if I want with very flexible hours.

And my other job, which I’ll hopefully get to pay myself a tiny stipend for this fall, is my business, The Flickering Light.

I’ve also been hustling all the ways  I know how as I transition out of Bread & Roses and into these jobs, getting paid while babies sleep and scooping cat poop out of litter boxes while their owners are gone.

Did I make it to the final round of the Leeway Foundation Transformation award? Yes. $15,000, unrestricted. Soon, if I’m lucky.

Am I feeling like my “artist self” is emerging? Yes.  Non traditional relationship. Non traditional employment. This is SO much more me.

What I mean by that, is inside I feel so much more whole. At the risk of sounding like a self help book, I have to say that caring increasingly less about how it looks from the outside has allowed me to finally settle into that peace and wholeness within.

I think you get to lead a creative life, or a life where you care what other people think of you. But never both.


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