Better Days Ahead

I love window light and its endless patterns. They are so simple, yet so graphic and descriptive. They tell a story of their travels; where they have been, where they are going.

Window light seeping in between blinds always makes me think of solitude, loneliness and contemplation. It makes me think of the days you don’t want to get out of bed, when you would rather let the strips of light lay on your body and make it bend to you rather than bending to life. Enough warm light to caress your face, as if those strips bring you some connection to the outside world, but hidden enough to stay disconnected so no one can see you. We all have bad days. Today, tomorrow or the future sometimes taunts us. The things we are struggling with whether it be a disease, disability, depression, death, loss, relationships or life’s obstacles that seem to hold us down with little hope. In those moments I turn my head towards the warm ray bans and murmur to myself, 'Better days are ahead'."

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This piece was inspired by a simple moment of tying my hair into a ponytail. 

My hair has been short for the last few years but recently I have been growing it out. My shoulders, arms, hands and fingers are significantly weaker than they were a year ago. This makes tasks like washing hair, blow drying and doing something as simple as tying a ponytail much more difficult.

Last month I tied my hair for the first time in years and it frustratingly took five minutes to achieve. The whole time I thought, "This has never been hard in the past. Not this, too". 

In this simple moment it is, yet again, glaringly obvious of what has left and what is leaving. It is the moments that make up a story.

As a child I remember bunching my hair, wrapping a rubber band around and looping it through effortlessly. Prior to learning, someone else had to do this for me. Usually my mother.

As a teen and as a young adult never did I give this act a second thought. It was effortless. It took a second to accomplish. 

I Am a KoreAm Journal Columnist

Hello out there!

I don't expect anyone to be still following me.  I won't even waste time making up lies on how I haven't had time to keep up with a blog. Let's face it, I'm terrible at this.

The truth is.  I'm being lazy about it.  I write notes and thoughts into my phone but never get around to translating it to my blog.  

I don't always have time to formally write down my thoughts and when I do have time I guess sometimes I don't want to use my free time dragging up a subject that is difficult.  

It (HIBM) already has enough of my life and I sometimes I resent giving it a bigger spotlight or platform than it deserves. I know why I need to share and I don't mind doing so but sometimes I just want to be "Kam". No story to be told, just another boring, nameless body in the crowd. 

I limit my sharing. I go in spurts. I wish I was  better at being full time at this but to be frank most of the time I just want to be off living my life to the fullest and not lamenting over this thing that invades my body.  And, I have been doing just that. This past year and half I have put my attention to other things. Like living new adventures only I know about. I have been well. I have the occassional emotional setback but for the most part I feel satisfied. I feel challenged. I feel alive. I'm ok.

Recently, KoreAm Journal gave me my own column.  September they launched my first column LIVING AGAINST FEAR 

Feel free to follow me there.  

"I tend to follow the lines of Twain’s “Write what you know.” And what you will find in my column is an array of stories about my life that will hopefully resonate with many of you—the things that sometimes hurt us, challenge us, frighten us, make us laugh, make us brave or weak and make us cry."

I figure if I'm slacking on my blog at least you can get an occasional entry through my column. Keep following me. I'm always somewhere on the net whether it be my tumblr, instagram (my travels), facebook.

So feel free to stalk me on those forums ;).

Playing Art Catch-Up

Hello?  Is anyone still out there?  I highly doubt it.  What am I averaging, a couple posts a year now?

 I'm hardly followable.  I get it. I barely blog now.  I know, terrible. I'm not sure why.

I guess I go in swings where sometimes I want to write or draw it out and other times I get myself into distractions and focus on living and enjoying life rather than dispensing my emotions or running, errrr, rolling to publicly catalogue it.  

During those times, I barely let anyone know what I am doing.  It's kind of like me not wanting to share everything about myself.  I suppose, I want some pieces to hold that I only know about.  I need that, too. I can't be mentally in HIBM 24/7, even though there is no real way to take a break from it, distractions or not.

If I'm asked about my HIBM I certainly don't mind talking about it. In fact, I'm glad if they do. I'm glad if they feel brave enough, or even better, unphased with asking me what is obviously on their mind. But if no one asks then I normally don't want to bother people and I spare them the details. With that, I guess I haven't been in the blogging or drawing mood. I go in waves.  

Drawing allows me to shed what I'm feeling without burdening others.  

There is a sense of calmness and working through the journey of emotions when I journal them through drawings and I need to be better at making time for them.  If I do keep progressing, which will most definitely happen if treatment doesn't draw nearer, I too would be interested in seeing the timeline of progression and moods through art. But I'm still hoping I won't see that day.

The thing is, I only share my drawings and my life because I want to motivate results and action.   I don't want to be just an "inspiration" because most inspirations are momentary and then forgotten about.

What am I supposed to do with that?  

It's not tangible. It's not something I can apply to the here and now, so I have very little reaction to "you're an inspiration".  True inspiration motivates action.  I guess I want action. I want passerbys to get involved.

I share my art for this reason and not to be watched from the sidelines as I deteriorate, hearing the words, "your art is so inspiring or you're so inspiring".  It's not right for me to feel this way but sometimes I get upset about this and I become discouraged and sometimes stop drawing or blogging.  When I feel like it doesn't matter, I withdraw. It's like a dagger to my heart. I open myself up not to be noticed but to perpetuate action.  

I find myself thinking that I don't want to hear how sorry everyone is ten years down the road when I'm already deteriorated, especially when something could have been done to prevent me from getting that far. I guess, I'm not interested in seeing sad faces ten years down the road when something could have been done.

These thoughts are unfair but honest.  I know things don't work out like this, it's no ones fault or duty, and patience is needed but time is always weighing on my weakening shoulders. Literally.  

With that, I realize I haven't posted art on here in a whileIn fact, I have only completed a couple new drawings in the past 6 months. I need to get better.  I have, however, been in four art shows that I never blogged about on here. For now I'll upload some of my newer drawings but you can always view them on my Facebook page

I'll get back to drawing this summer.

Find Your Perspective

I seem to begin all my posts with, "Sorry, it's been a really long time since my last post..."

Well, I'm not going to do that this time. I'm not. Truth is, I have so much to share, in words and illustrations.  I have a back log of hundreds of drawing ideas, but we all know how it is. Finding the time is difficult and finding the excuse is easier ;).

I've been doing pretty well.  Really.  Been very busy while fighting some kind of being sick for the past four months. It's odd, besides my initial birth where i had all sorts of health complications, growing up I barely got sick.  My mother used to always say, "You never get sick".  I think she took personal credit and pride in that.  But, I guess we aren't twelve anymore.  

I get tired more often than I'd like, part age, part my hibm, but do my best to hold on to being able to do everything and anything. I just can't give that part up yet. I feel like hibm tries to wrestle me down...aha!

There's an illustration idea: a wrestler named "HIBM". What a schmuck. I envision what we must look like in the ring. I'm sure my costume is way cooler than his.

The other day I fell. I fell right in front of my bathroom door, right next to my bedroom door.  I fell backwards, flat on my back with my walker perfectly straddled over me. Don't feel bad. By now I'm an expert faller. I haven't fell in a very long time and it was a silly little step that threw me off balance. I was particularly mad and obsessing over that little misstep, because I had too much on my agenda that day and falling is a nuisance.  A waste of minutes.

Feeling too weak to roll over and attempt the whole drama of sitting up, I just laid there.


"really?", I mumbled.

I stared at the ceiling.  "Huh, a new perspective", I thought.  It only takes a fall to see something new.

I texted a friend from down the street. Her name is Sonya. I hired her when I moved back to pop by a couple times a week for an hour to help out and in general someone who I could call in case of emergencies.  I try not to rely on her for too many things so I can maintain my independence, but she helps me with little things; when I need a ride or get myself in a pickle like today.  It's been invaluable having her available and willing to come when I need something.  

"I'll be there in 20 minutes.", Sonya texts.

I soaked up the scenery of my door and ceiling.  "Oh, so close", I kept thinking. I was nearly out the door.  It wasn't a terrible fall. Ironically, my walking is far from being graceful, yet my falls make me look like I'm a feather dropping.  

Seemed like a perfect situation to make my doorway into a drawing. After all I had spent a good amount of time lying there.

In my drawings my lines are ragged, a bit jaggedy.  I remember my very first illustration a year ago and I was annoyed that my lines weren't perfect, yet shaky. But then I realized I've never been able to sketch perfect lines even before HIBM began.  Not even in ID school.  My hand shakes a bit when I draw. I decided just to go with it and let that become my style.  I'm not perfect, so why should my lines be?

I imagined my door, walls and cupboards as buildings, and there I was walking in the sky.  I was looking up at myself or was it, I was looking down at myself?  Imagination is very important.  I think we focus on grades, intellect, education, and in school we sort of teach ourselves out of imagination, but imagination is a very important tool to have in life.  Don't let go of it.  I don't need to go on about that.  I'll leave that to Sir Ken Robinson. I recommend his book Out of Our Minds.

When I don't have control, when there is nothing in the world that can change my circumstance, I imagine myself out of it. After all, as much as I'd like to, I can't escape my problems. I literally cannot run away.  Sure, I could avoid them, like most of us try to because we don't want to deal with anything bad, or I could take up a vice and get lost in overeating, working excessively, drinking, constant partying, drugs. This is in no way judgement to those that do. Every one of us have our escape routes handy in case we need to jump ship.

I guess for me mine is creativity and "doing".  Creativity keeps me grounded, sane, more alive and will things possible.  It's all I have in these moments. I want what I can't have so badly that I say, "Screw you" and imagine it up myself.

If I saw it exactly as it really was, such as this situation on the ground, it would only make me cry and frustrated.