On being Tired.
Y’know, sometime soon I’ll be writing a cooler post about an amazing collaboration with someone or an awesome project I’m working on. I am in fact working on an exciting, adorable commission right now, and I’m also putting the final touches on the children’s book I illustrated this year, but for now – I’m going to write about how tired I am.
‘Cause it’s my blog, and I can. It’s only getting colder and darker, and I think you can relate.
If you’ve followed my work on Instagram or visited my table or booth at an art fair, you might have noticed several illustrations of mine about people sleeping, relaxing, or not doing much of anything. This is nothing new; when I was doing my daily drawing challenge “Anna Draws Every Day” on Instagram from 2015-2017, sleepiness was a common theme. I’ve ALWAYS been the type of person who was on the go, takes on too much, and never gets enough time to relax. So I’d often draw that.
Being a tired working person is the main theme (of my life). You’re tired because day in and day out, you’re still going, going, going, creating, commuting, coordinating, planning, going, going, going. You have to be ON at all times when working with others, then find time before or after your job to work on your art, or take time for #selfcare. I’ve drawn a working girl getting home from work and falling asleep while dishing chili out from the pot to eat a late dinner, or an artist falling asleep drawing, or a lady taking serious nap in the nail salon while the manicure’s under the dryer. (When I lived with Christabel, she often cooked a lot and left enough for me to make a plate. What a blessing to get home and have chili waiting for you in the pot!) These drawings were each done because it was EXACTLY what I’d been experiencing at the time.
And then, some of my drawings and posts on social media get really, really into the sleepy part. For me, at least, sometimes you’re just so tired that you don’t even know what else to think about or create in your head, so you just draw someone sleeping. The thought process is, “I am just SO tired, but I need to draw. What do I draw? Oh. A bed. A person sleeping, or a person hurting from the alarm clock going off. There we go.” *quickly draws bed, sheets pulled up close, draws semi-circle eyes closed, steps back and admires work, and goes to bed* I like to incorporate pets into these pictures because house pets are often sleeping, too. They’re comrades in the battle of waking up.
Upon reflection, there are times in my life where I’m more tired not just because of my lifestyle of working multiple jobs, but because I’m unhappy with my current situation. I tend to get restless and depressed when I don’t like my job and feel stifled creatively, seriously want a change, or even because of another personal issue (bad relationships, anyone?). It’s natural, I think, to become so exhausted beyond reason when we’re dealing with a situation that’s draining you. I’ve looked back and seen how depressive times have affected me and my energy; it’s real and gets to you physically. Some days or times are hard to get through for various reasons. Just makes it harder to get up in the morning.
All in all, c’est la vie. If you’re a working person, or an artist with another job, or a go-getter who works multiple jobs, or an entrepreneur starting your own business, or you have a long and draining commute, or have kids, or have a mean boss, or have a lifestyle that’s constantly on the go, I think you’re just going to be tired a lot of the time. It’s ok. I feel you, and I draw it. We are human after all, and we need to rest just as much as we need to be out there pursuing our goals and making the moneys.
Sleep tight tonight! Tomorrow is another day.