There are some days when not even crafting can raise you out of a funk. My gosh, I work hard, I keep the house clean, I take care of my boys, I try to remain cordial with my ex, and I do mostly an ok job. But every so often, something falls through the cracks, or doesn’t, and I find myself crippled by sadness and feelings of alienation.
When I stopped working to raise my boys, when I was still married, I was so worried because I’ve always gotten so much gratification and self-worth from having a job I believed in. I was a legal aid, which is how I met my husband, and I was so enamored by his status that I felt more important in my own status. We worked together for three years before we got serious and then I left to avoid conflicts of interest and started at a different firm.
By the time we had our first kid, a year into our marriage, he had convinced me that I’d find as much value in a lifestyle as a mother as I’d had as a professional. This was certainly true for the first couple of years, but once we split up and I found myself still depending on his income to fund my lifestyle, I began to feel worse and worse and of less and less value.
Creating things, running a store, being a mom, these things help to make me feel useful in the world but like I said – the sadness can be sometimes overwhelming and unshakeable. In my younger and freer years, I could just take a day to myself to stay in bed or do some self-care or watch movies and will myself into feeling better. If it didn’t work, I’d just lock myself inside for a day or two until it went away.
As a mom, there’s no longer space for that. Especially as a single mom. And there’s no damn way I’m leaving my boys with my parents just for the sole reason of “I’m feeling kinda down lately” even though they’d jump at the chance.
Creating little art projects is a way to stay busy, to keep one’s mind fresh, to keep one’s fingers moving, to explore creative ideas, and to have a token of having survived a sad day.
So don’t worry if you’re not in the mood every single day! Wait for inspiration to strike! Write down ideas as you have them so that if you quickly need something to keep you busy for a half hour or a day, you have a running list of options to try. Keep some spare supplies at home so that you can’t use the excuse of not having any. Get your kids excited about it so that if you’re not in the mood, they can work to convince you.
Just never stop moving.