Curbing my enthusiasm

I was going to write that I am feeling simultaneously hyper and exhausted, but I’ve just realized I had sweets this morning, so the “energy” is probably just sugar!*

My last few posts have been about the joys of a more extroverted lifestyle, but this morning I am finding it useful to reflect upon our stay in New York, when I went to too many things and then found myself badly needing downtime. I haven’t quite reached the grumpy stage yet, but I am physically very tired, and that’s no good. I forget, often, when I’m out running around, that my body has limits; and that much as I would like to dance every day and go for long walks in the sun and paint for hours on end, each of those activities imposes a toll and thus requires the appropriate recuperation time. I guess my progress is that I’m remembering this before I reach the end of my energy stores, and not after!

Jolie Holland at The Independent, SF

I’ve mentioned Holland before on this blog. Her opener, Jess Williamson, is also worth a listen.




It’s especially frustrating to run up against these limits when I’ve been on such a roll creatively. Just as I tend to fear, during my off-weeks, that that state of lethargy is my usual state as an artist, whenever I’m in a really frenetic on-week, I congratulate myself for finally achieving the productivity I’ve always wanted. “This too shall pass” applies equally to both phases, but how conveniently I forget!


Another super-detailed kitchen portrait:


The next step, from here, is to figure out just what I need when I can feel myself coming up on a crash. There’s still a certain amount of social activity I’m committed to, and there are creative projects I don’t want to just shelve (like the kitchen portraits, whose “sittings” are already scheduled, and my choose-your-own-romance), and maybe holing up and being horizontal is not sustainable anyway. So what would be good for me? Very easy yoga, perhaps, and visits to the hot tubs,** and simple healthy cooking, and taking slow walks instead of my usual city-dweller stride. Tea, and time off from devices, and probably a lot of petting of cats (Lyapa will love that).


*Yesterday I visited the crêperie we stayed near, last summer, in San Francisco, and they still had the sablés bretons I liked so much then. I asked for five, but the guy said, “You can just have all of them!” (The shop closes at two, and we were there about half an hour before that.) And he threw in some caramel sauce as well. When I got home I discovered that shortbread plus caramel tastes like alfajores, which I cannot resist. So yes. A large quantity of irresistible sweets in my kitchen makes for a gluttonous morning.

**I did this on Monday, actually, and it was really nice. You know why I went? I wrote it into my CYOR story. The main character had had an active weekend and decided to counteract it by spending a day at home and then going to a Japanese bath. Isn’t it funny that I can “prescribe” this to my character before I fully realize I need it for myself? Not so much “write what you know” as “write what you don’t know you know”!