Friday, October 3, 2008

Thank you, Steven

Yes, I know.  
I know that, after all these years of being away from art, I have finally come back to what has been my true dream, what I have known I was supposed to be since I was four years old.
And then there comes the doubt.
Of course, I do have to say that the greatest doubt comes when I have not been working as hard as I should be.  But there it is.
It is scary when you are wondering if you are really going to get anywhere. 
What are you doing?
Are you crazy?
You need to get a real job again.  You need to have expanded in getting a job that makes even more money, not reduced it.  You should be getting a bigger and better house in a better neighborhood and you should be taking a cruise and traveling around the world to expand your vision other than your neighborhood.  Isn't that what other people your age are doing?
I think of Erik that I wrote about a few posts ago.  Having done that thing I was so scared to do myself.  Majoring in art, and now out to go get a job in the field he loves.  Yes, I said, and if and when things get scary, don't doubt yourself.  Stay in art and never let it go.  You'll make it, and you'll be glad you did.  If you leave to get a "regular" job, you'll spend years looking back, regretting you walked away.  Just like I have spent so many years of my life.
But now I am here and it is scary.
I don't regret being here.  I am just looking around at the mounting waves and it is scary to be out here, in the middle of the ocean, wondering if you will ever make it to shore.
But as it gets closer to November, I think of my cousin Steven.  
It will be 15 years since he passed away.
He should have been the artist.
He was the one with all the creativity.
He was the most wonderful artist I knew.
But he, too, never gave himself the full chance he deserved.  He worked some regular jobs and he still did some art, but not anywhere near what he should have, could have.
I found out years later that he could have even got help getting into one of the top art schools here in L.A. but he didn't.
Because despite all his confidence, I realize now he doubted himself.
As great as his skill was, he never fully believed.
And then he died too young.
A while after he passed I stood at his grave and he said, "So, are you doing art?"
Well, no, because I'm in the middle of a divorce and I'm in school and I'm working part time and I'm raising my kids.
"You know, Carol, I'm dead.  You're not.  Think about it."
So I have not posted in a few days because I was doubting again.
But I told myself that when I did that, I would think of Steven because I promised him I would at least try.  
Because he can't but I can.
Hold my hand, Steven.
Carol B.