In the last year, my life has essentially changed. After a period of declining health, my husband suffered a stroke over Labor Day. We were able to get him to the hospital quickly, where he was diagnosed with a full right-side stroke. In other words, he was completely paralyzed on his right side. It happened that quickly.
Fortunately, the ER physician was able to administer a powerful anti-coagulant, in hopes of counter-acting some of the stroke effects. This is crucial for anyone who suffers a stroke caused by a blood clot: quick treatment is essential. Because he was treated within 3 hours of the onset of the stroke, he had a chance of partial recovery.
That was Labor Day. It is now 3-1/2 months later. He has been receiving physical therapy 3 times a week, along with nursing and home health care. Yesterday, for the first time in over 4 months, he was able to stand from the wheelchair to the walker, and then transfer to the car. His physical therapy is not over, by a long shot. But, he is now more mobile, and able to finally get out to doctors' appointments.
That's enough to about him. What has happened to me has been strange and unexpected (to say the very least!)! As his physical ability declined over the last year+, I have had less and less time in the studio. Understand, in many creative activities, the creator needs extended periods of time to get lost in the process, to touch the edges of the unknown. The priority of care over-rides studio time. There is a gradual eroding of me-time for the care-giver, something the care-giver, herself, has difficulty noticing. Liken it to watching children grow: it is easier to see growth in a child when one only sees the child occasionally, than when one sees the child daily. We simply don't notice it, at least not until the shoes pinch.
As primary care-givers, our focus is on the Other, not on ourselves. And our creative lives suffer. The studio becomes more of a store-room than a creative space.
I'm putting you on notice: I have cleaned out the studio.
Randall still requires care, and probably will for the rest of his life. But, that's LIFE. As he and I adjust to new schedules, new routines, new habits, our schedules become more flexible in allowing creative space to develop.
I'm coming back.