With all the excitement of a kid just getting out of school for the summer, I made BIG plans! I LOVE summer. In many respects, I LIVE for summer. Summer and my kids, of course. So…there we were, cruising along through our summer explorations and having a grand ol’ time when, without warning, an accident.
Not a car accident, thank God! That would have been more expensive and potentially harmful to more than just me. Nope…this was an ART Accident! In my ‘spare’ time, I am an artist. I’ve been showing my work around Seattle and points north since 2010 and have been picking up steam over the last few years and actually selling! I even managed to have a solo show in Seattle that ran from May-July this year, and for that, I am very grateful.
The accident came as a result of a change in my direction with marketing my artwork. I decided to start a shop or two online and link them to my website http://www.ChemicalBanana.com so I started one on Meylah.com and another on Etsy. Both shops are called ChemicalBanana in case you’re looking or wondering, and each features different items. My Meylah store features my fine art pieces and my Etsy store has more ‘crafty’ melted glass pieces.
In order to list items on Meylah, one has to measure and weigh each piece for accuracy in estimating shipping. I had been storing some of my work in our garage, and in my bare feet, I went in to retrieve a piece. I picked up ‘Locked’, a photo/mixed media piece on salvaged 1/4″ fiberglass board weighing in at over eight pounds, by its hanging wire. As I got the piece up to about my shoulder height, the wire snapped and all eight+ pounds of art came crashing down on my right foot at the point where toes meet foot.
It’s been a long time since I’ve broken any body parts, but the pain in unmistakable. Also, I’d taken so long to set up my online store that I wasn’t going to let something like searing pain keep me from dragging the piece of art into the house and weighing and measuring it! After about three minutes of hysteria in our fireproof/soundproof garage, I dragged the art into the house where my husband and kids finally heard me crying and came running.
To make a long story considerably shorter, we waited 2 weeks to get me to the doctor. When we finally did, x-rays showed that I had three breaks on two toes and the swelling and continued bruising from my not staying off my foot made me need a specialist. In the mean time, all of our summer plans and adventures got canceled. I can’t walk more than a few feet, let alone take the kids hiking, on scooter rides, bike rides, kayaking (foot pedals and broken toes don’t go well together…I know, because hubby and I went kayaking with my not-yet-diagnosed broken toes for our anniversary and my foot and ultimately leg went numb).
My husband made a deal with me. He said he’d TRY and get the kids out on some adventures if I promised to stay home, keep ice on my foot and finish at least one of the kids stories I’d started over the past several years. Not a bad deal. I had a publisher interested in one earlier this year, but she wanted me to illustrate it and I am NOT an illustrator. No, really. I have lots of artistic abilities, but illustration isn’t one of them.
Instead, I opted to finish a photo-based story I’d started before any of the others. I was reluctant in part because this one is close to my heart. It’s based on my kids favorite stuffed animals and some of the adventures and photos thereof were based on my brother who we ‘lost’ in December 2008. It needed to be finished.
I was surprised once I sat down and started working on it how easily it came together. I was encouraged when my kids LOVED the story as it developed. I was relieved when, as I wrote the last page, I found myself laughing out loud. No…I haven’t gone over the deep end. I just finally finished something I didn’t realize was weighing on me and I really LOVE how it came out.
If you’re even a little curious, please check out my story on Amazon.com It’s called Mitty and His Sister. I hope it will make you laugh out loud too!
And I hope that from here on out, I will be able to finish my other stories without breaking any more body parts. I’ve never considered myself dramatic, so the idea that it took something like that to get me to finish a project started several years ago is, at best, disturbing. I think I’ve got the hint that my psyche was trying to get across. No more breaks, please. I’ll finish the projects now. I Promise!