I Will Honor My Need to Create

The ex tried to reach me several times this week to talk about the lawsuit. I ignored his texts and messages but yesterday when he called I pulled over to see what he needed to convey.

He’s relying on the lawsuit money to start a business and move away from here but it could be six months or a year before that money comes. He’s mad at his attorney for telling him it would look better to the jury if he were working. The attorney doesn’t understand like I do, that he simply can’t get hired in this town — maybe any town.

I don’t want to get into my ex’s state of mind. He’s a supreme narcissist who has really never held a job. And when he does apply for jobs, which he is doing, he argues and offends the people he’s appealing to. He told me, for example, that he went to some sort of job fair recently where after the presentation he walked up to the guy in charge and asked how quickly people in this profession get promoted. He was told five years. So then he went on to argue and complain to this person about a promotion for a job he would never, ever be hired for.

That’s sort of him in a nutshell.

So yesterday he just wanted to complain about his (our) attorney and asked me to speak up on his behalf. Mainly he just wanted to complain to someone and I’m gathering lately that maybe his world of lackeys is getting smaller which is why he finds himself desperate enough to want to talk to me. But I don’t know about his world of lackeys or the 26 year old whore who caused me tremendous pain. I don’t ask.

I let him talk and tried to calm him a little bit. Mostly I sat there thinking, my god he won’t ever change. He won’t ever hear what he sounds like. How did I put up with it for so long…

And then, many hours later he texts me,

Hey can u talk


Me: What’s up?

Can u or not

Me (after a pause): I suppose

It’s alright never mind

Forget ir


Me: [crickets]


So I think to myself, what the hell’s going on with him? Did he really want to call and bitch to me AGAIN? This is not going to start happening.

And then I thought about how I ached for him to respond to my texts when he discarded me. There is no way to adequately describe the pain. I can’t even allow myself to dwell on it because it overwhelms.

I lay in bed in this room I’m still in and cried silently — the pain was searing. So many people who have been cheated on and dumped understand what I’m trying to express. You look for comfort from the very person who is causing the pain and it takes a while for that natural instinct to look to your loved one dissipates.

I am a chump and I don’t like seeing anyone in pain — even him. But there are limits to what I will or can do for him. And more than anything I want him to get this money and fucking leave.

I have a feeling that if I were in my own home and he knew it, he would be pursuing me just because I’m an easy mark and he’s desperate for help. What a sick fucker. I’ve already decided that when I buy a home, I will also get a post office box, because I do not want someone to be able to google my name and find my address, least of all him.

Okay, enough about him.

One of the things I’ve been doing this last couple of years, is to try to purchase all the art supplies I sold or gave away before our last big move to London. Stuff I loved and had acquired for years I just got rid of it because I believed this last move to London was permanent.

So while I don’t have room to paint, I’ve been buying all my favorite tubes of acrylic paints with 50% off coupons along with canvases, brushes, whatever catches my eye. And when I get my home I will dedicate part of it to being an art studio.

I was born an artist.

My earliest memories are of loving painting and drawing or simply creating. When I was 8 or 9 I begged my mom to take me to the library where an acting class was going to take place. I remember I wore brand new white pants, a yellow shirt, and my new leather moccasins (this was So. Calif. in the late 60s). She dropped me off. I walked into the room and all of the other moms where there asking questions and pushing their kids forward. I sat there and was ignored, far too shy to speak up for myself, and then went to the car when it was time for my mom to pick me up again. She didn’t want me to succeed.

When I was about 12 I begged my parents to sign me up for painting lessons at a local shop. To my shock my dad bought me a gift certificate for Christmas for a few classes there but I never used it. I was too shy to walk in the door.

This is the story of my life.

I took a couple of art classes in high school but wasn’t inspired. By my sophomore year I decided to learn about black and white photography and that is what kept me relatively sane for the rest of high school.

I began working after school and weekends when I was 15 because I needed my own money so that my mother could stop trying to buy my love with gifts after huge fights. I saved and saved and when I was a junior I purchased my own brand new Minolta SRT 102. It was my pride and joy.

Then boys began to happen and broken hearts and pregnancy scares and eating disorders and just overall drama and after one particularly bad break up my father did something spectacular for me.

You have to remember that my sister and I never got rewarded or encouraged in any way. We were non entities. The only person who mattered in our house was our overachieving brother.

So I’m not sure how this came about, but it’s huge.

My father took me to the photography shop at the mall and bought all the stuff I would need for my own darkroom and then he took the small laundry room at our house and moved the washer and dryer into the garage. He painted the room dark, put in a deep sink, put up shelves, installed the proper lighting, covered the window, and turned it into a darkroom for me.


Can you imagine? I don’t even know what my mom thought of having her laundry moved to the garage!

I spent a lot of time in there but I was still freaking out about boys. But it was the only thing that anyone ever did just for me.

Before my graduation from high school, when I was still 17, I got pregnant and so I guess I thought my dreams of being Annie Liebowitz were over. I dabbled in photography when I could, but never the way I did when I was 16 and 17.

When I was a teenager and in my early 20s I wanted to be an actress, but most of all I wanted to be a rock star like Deborah Harry. When I was divorced at 20 with a two year old I tried to audition with groups, but was too shy to open my mouth.

Flash forward to my third marriage, to the good man. I’m in and out of psych wards. I’m very medicated. And during one of my stays in the psychiatric wing I got started doing crafts and something clicked.

I came home from that stay and signed up for a drawing class. After that I took an acrylic painting class. The instructor was a local surrealist painter and I loved him. He was a bit off himself, so he was a great teacher for me.

My husband and I had just purchased a brand new home so we took one room and designated it my studio. He built me a gorgeous wooden easel which he surprised me with at Christmas. I cherish it still.

I painted a lot on paper and canvas and board and then I began to take ceramics classes which I took over and over. Eventually I took a sculpting class.

All of this was a several year period where I was heavily medicated. I noticed that when I was off anti-depressants I was not as apt to be creative.

My life has just been one mishap after another because I was not true to myself and my need to create. My own intense shyness ruined my destiny.

So even though I won’t be a famous artist, or even necessarily a good artist, I will be an artist again. I will create my studio space and I will paint. I will honor that part of me.

I cannot wait.





2 responses to “I Will Honor My Need to Create

  1. This….this is mighty personified. I cannot believe how much your voice has changed over the years and how incredible your triumph is. I know you struggle. But this is such beauty. I am in awe.

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