End of an Era

photo by thornypup

photo by thornypup

I have deadline anxiety. Weeping, swearing, teeth-gnashing anxiety that can last for weeks, and worries the hell out of the Spousal Unit. It doesn’t matter if the deadline is casual or important–with rare exceptions, they have the same devastating effect.

At about 4am this morning, I got rid of my last deadline.

I’d been planning a letterboxing event for this October. It had a wonderful story to go along with it, and was going to include lots of artsy props. I had some good help from far away, and more good help close by. It was a big job–very big–but certainly not impossible. The problem is, I hadn’t been all that interested in carving stamps or building letterboxes for a year or more. The stamp I’d already carved was beautiful, but I rushed through it, begrudging every minute. My heart wasn’t in the project, and the anxiety was already starting to pinch.

I’d been talking to people about the possibility of cancelling, but I think my mind was already made up. Early this morning, I let it go, and admitted that I’m walking away from letterboxing.

Letterboxing has been a huge part of my life for several years. I’ve made a lot of friends I cherish, discovered new places, and created some fun art. I’ll probably still hunt boxes with friends. Maybe I’ll get the urge to plant one or two. I’m still in a few facebook groups that I like to keep up with, and I have an event that’s basically encouraging other folks to plant–so that’s okay. But no more big stuff with looming end dates.

I’m a little numb today, feeling a weird post-stress letdown. My studio time is now mine to do with as I please, and that’s tremendously freeing. By Monday, I suspect I’ll be tackling my art with renewed fervor.

The trick now is to avoid adding more deadlines as much as humanly possible. I’ve been very good over the past year at reducing them to this point. I have one deadline a year that has, for some reason, never given me anxiety, so I’ll be keeping that one.

Everything else, well, I hope folks understand when I say I don’t take commissions.


1 Responses to End of an Era

  1. kari says:

    Sometimes leaving things behind is for the best. Glad you found a peace here.

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