I've been MIA, that's where I've been. I started a new teaching job a few weeks ago and I've been trying to find balance ever since. I went from making my own schedule to keeping someone else's schedule and trying to find time in between it all to see my family, work out, shoot my bow, talk to friends and make art. It's really, really hard. Life has become very full all of a sudden.
My biggest struggle is that I leave the house every day while my daughter is still asleep. I wasn't able to take her to the very first day at Mother's Day Out and she can't help me make my coffee in the morning anymore. Somehow, the coffee just doesn't taste quite as sweet these days. I miss her terribly and feel disconnected. The second struggle, which is related to the first one, is that I have to wake up at SIX AM. I'm a tried and true night owl and the 6 am thing is a massive adjustment.
Now, I simply have to stop whining lest you think me ungrateful because there are some truly FANTASTIC things happening as well. The very best part is that I teach at an amazing school with incredible facilities and a generous operating budget. I get to show up every day and talk about photography, look at their awesome photos and share inspiration with a group of eager students. Today I showed them this amazing Jamie Lidell video while they worked away in Photoshop. That's a great thing. Every Monday, I post this list of inspiration on my classroom white board (look up #kinkaidphoto and/or #mondayartlove on Instagram to see them all). That's awesome too. I love it when they stop, check out the links or write the quote down and I can see that little light of inspiration flicker. It's a breath of fresh air to be back in the classroom.
I've exposed them to the idea of keeping a daily artist's book (journal, sketchbook, whatever you like to call it) and they are latching on and loving it. That makes me giddy, yet another high point.
So, while I've been MIA, I haven't been idle. I've been transitioning. I've been trying to find a new normal and having to do some serious prioritizing in the process.
Little things help the nagging "harp" sound my iPhone makes at 6 am, like finding a pristine Hasselblad camera in the equipment cabinet. I think I'm going to be the first one to check that baby out. I've already bought some new film and the lure of the well stocked darkroom is palpable. Time spent in the dark watching silvery images rise up on previously blank sheets of paper is a bit of magic that never gets old.
Last, but certainly not least, I am energized by the faces of my students. I know they're still sizing me up but they have been open and eager. They're being patient with me as I find my feet in this new space and, that, is a gift. I hope you will all be patient as well if my blog posts seem irregular. I'm wondering if the changes in my work like may create a new voice here as well?