Ever since Kailus was born, I've been dreaming of the day we would get to draw and paint together. Now that we're (mostly) out of the put-everything-in-our-mouth stage, we finally got to pull out some paints and do just that this past week. While he mostly dug his fingers in the watercolors, used the paintbrushes as drum sticks and tried to tip over the water cup while I painted, he did eventually make a few marks on the canvas. Even so, it was wonderful. We laughed, listened to music, and danced and enjoyed every minute of it. I am already looking forward to the next piece we get to create together.

After a couple of months of little-to-no writing, beyond a few newsletters with real surfacey announcements (workshops and shop updates and such) I am aware this post must feel random and as though it's coming a bit from left field.

There's been a reason for the radio silence and so here's a bit of a rundown of what's been happening since my last written post back in....May?

After a trip to Savannah for the hubby's birthday at the start of April, I started to feel off. I honestly thought I was just a bit hungover due to my being a lightweight post pregnancy/ first year of motherhood (I only drank 4 beers over the course of an entire day). When a week passed and I still wasn't feeling right, and a few other stomach related issues began cropping up, I chalked it up to a stomach bug of some sort. Plus, stomach issues aren't a new thing for me - I've been dealing with them on and off again for the better part of the past decade and even though I thought I'd gotten to the root of it prior to pregnancy, I just figured it was more of the same old issues coming back.

Flash forward maybe a month and I suddenly found myself with little to no appetite, a rather big-for-me drop in weight, a lack of energy so intense it reminded of when I had mono in high school, as well as a myriad of other stomach related symptoms and I found myself at the doctor's getting recommended for a colonoscopy.

May and the first half of June... well frankly they sucked. I struggled to take care of daily parenting responsibilities, let alone find the energy to get in the studio. There was about a three week span of time when I practically moved back in to my mom's so I could have help with the little guy while the hubby worked. I just couldn't keep up. Between this and the inability to get in the studio to paint, it all took a massive toll on me mentally.

I paint and create, less out of a desire to do so, and mostly out of a need to. I have to create, it's not really an option for me. It's like a primal drive that I absolutely cannot ignore. If I do... well, being around me tends to become a bit tense.

The hardest part: I suddenly had tons of ideas for pieces and no energy left to create them. I was chomping at the bit to pick up a brush again and the idea of even walking to the studio after getting the little guy down for a nap exhausted me.

My colonoscopy was scheduled for the beginning of June and turns out, I have developed ulcerative colitis. Or well, I'm not sure if 'developed' is the correct term, as it falls under the autoimmune category, which I believe you always have, it just has to be triggered? I'm not really sure and I'm still navigating what this diagnosis means and how things are going to look going forward.

While navigating our medical system and dealing with copays and astronomical mediation costs (who can afford $8500 a month for meds?? And yes, you read that right- I am not missing a decimal there) has been an absolute bitch, I am on the up and up. This first flare has subsided (thank you steroids) and I'm seeing a nutritionist to figure out how to manage this holistically, or as holistically as possible.

The energy is back and so I'm happy to say I've been able to make time to be in the studio and it feels like a breathe of fresh air! I'm starting to finally feel like me again. I've even signed up for a market! It's taking place this Saturday, the 23rd from 4-7p, at Femme X. If you're in the Cola Town area, please come stop by.

Once again, this has just been a lesson in slowing down and finding that balance between rest and doing. It's still such a hard one for me. It's been ingrained in me in ways that I didn't realize the depth of until theae past few months and it seems the more I try to excavate it, the deeper it tries to burrow. But I'll get there.

Now that this little guy is asleep (hopefully a good long nap too) I'm going to hope back in the studio and divojg back into these adorable and just-for-fun floral portraits I recently started. (And yes, they'll be at the market on Saturday!)

Until next time.