When sickness falls on your home and babe, there is no other choice but to drop tools and to attend. No matter if an application is due or you are in the throws of work. A reality all practicing artist parents face.
Winter can be a tough season to work through but it also offers its own rhythm which can be useful if you can tap into it. I've always thought it is crucial as an artist to consciously 'waste time'. It is necessary for my artistic process and often the time when the way forward within a project will reveal itself. As an artist and a mother time is certainly limited and it can be difficult to find time to stop, to even contemplate 'wasting time' or to rest. When sickness knocks on your door you have little choice and this can be a blessing.
But what if we made more conscious choices as artists, as mothers, to stop and to rest. Today as I lay resting with my sick son I reached for the writing of poet and philosopher David Whyte and his very wise words on Rest. I want to consciously bring this notion of rest into my practice and life, not just when sickness forces me to stop.
"To rest is to fall back literally or figuratively from outer targets and shift the goal not to an inner static bull's eye, an imagined state of perfect stillness, but to an inner state of natural exchange. The template of natural exchange is the breath, the autonomic giving and receiving that forms the basis and the measure of life itself. We are rested when we are a living exchange between what lies inside and what lies outside, when we are an intriguing conversation between the potential that lies in our imagination and the possibilities for making that internal image real in the world. To rest is not self indulgent, to rest is to prepare to give the best of ourselves, and to perhaps, most importantly, arrive at a place where we are able to understand what we have already been given."
- David Whyte, Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.