In the spirit of Halloween, which is just around the corner, I’ve decided to sit down and take the time to revive this blog. Raise this blog from the dead! Get it?
Mombie (n): someone resembling a living person, characterized by a staggering walk and a blank stare. Caused by having one or more children. She feeds on coffee and survives on wine.
I’ve been meaning to do this for months, as I always say whenever I go through long periods of drought on this blog, but there’s never enough time these days. Wasn’t it just January last week? I checked my Drafts folder and there are nine unfinished posts. NINE! That’s a lot of unfinished thoughts.
It got me thinking. Why? Why did I not finish those posts? I used to think that it was because I’m really bad at time management, but these days, I’m realizing that it’s more because I don’t know myself anymore.
When I became a mom at the start of this year, I got shocked with all the changes. I was used to making art everyday. But now, life has become an endless cycle of breastfeeding, changing diapers, carrying the baby, and just generally having a tiny human being attached to me 24/7.
I got depressed in an extremely bad way during the first six months postpartum, and it affected my mindset and confidence. I went through phases of wishing to go back to my old life. And of course, I felt so guilty! How could I want a life without my baby? That was insane!
Everyone was telling me to: (a) Get over it! Man up. This was what ALL mothers go through. (b) Wait it out. It just takes time to get used to these things. (c) Accept the reality. I was just being overly sensitive.
Some of those comments came from a place of love, I’m sure, but they weren’t helping. I was talking to my friend, Airees, about it. And she also shared about how she needed art to breathe, to feel alive, to be who she truly was. That was exactly what I felt. I was drowning because I wasn’t creating. I had no artistic outlet.
I just wasn’t me anymore. But now, I’m beginning to feel like me again except EVEN BETTER. I’m supposed to say that, right? Because being a mom is a blessing! There are still days when I don’t feel that way, but I know that it’s the residual depression talking. Having Oliver will always be my greatest blessing.
Sure, there are still a lot of doubts, worries, mistakes, and learning experiences that I’m going through as a new mom. I probably will go through these challenges for the rest of my mom life. And that’s okay, right?
I still haven’t figured out how to go back to making art more often, even as my boy turns 10 months in a couple of weeks. But as I’m slowly discovering who the new me is, I’m also finding ways to balance my mom life with my wife life and my art life.
Thankfully, the husband also gave me an early Christmas gift – an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil that lets me play with Procreate and lettering again. I’m also figuring out how to draw with it. It’s not a replacement for watercolor, but it’s a great way to scratch an itch whenever painting isn’t an option.
I’ve also started saying yes to watercolor-related projects and activities now, like creating my goddaughter’s birthday invitation, coming out with a stationery collab with the husband, and doing a demo for Just Add Water 2 a few weeks ago. Those bursts of watercoloring moments, no matter how short the time I get to do what I love, fuels me and gets me through. Hopefully, it’ll last me until I can finally get back to painting more often.
This is a good start, yes?