Finding the Balance

Yesterday was the 12th anniversary of Forrest’s death. I always take the day off. It’s not a particularly sad day, just one that I like to separate from the rest. I don’t do email or anything else on the internet, I don’t plan anything, I just get up in the morning and do whatever it is I want to do.

Brent made breakfast for me, which was nice except that it was 6:30 in the morning when he delivered it. The gesture was so sweet, and so like him, that I rallied, ate, then went back to sleep while he walked the dogs. Decadent. I never miss walking the dogs. When I finally got up for what we call second breakfast, it was 9:00. There was no point in getting dressed since the dogs had already been out, so I stayed in my PJs until they had to go out again at 2:00. In the meantime, I finished a book by Louise Penny called Still Life, and finished all the easy parts of a puzzle we’re working on. At 6:00, 60 Minutes came on, then the McCartney/Starr reunion celebrating the night the Beatles debuted on Ed Sullivan 50 years ago, then Downton Abbey. Finally, at 10:30, we went back to bed and I slept as well as I ever have. It reminds me that un-busy days lead to sleep-filled nights.

This morning I’ve woken with a bit of sadness. Not about Forrest, although his absence is probably wrapped up in my emotions. Every day there’s a choice for me: enjoy the process of making music, books or anything else I like to create, or, get to work and promote that same creative output. Needless to say, there’s a balance. But the bigger question nags at me: how badly do I want the bigger prizes? Do I want to be insanely driven, working 16 hours a day, which is what it takes to get somewhere in the fields that I’m working in, or, find a more sane blend of creative time and promotional time in each day and not shoot for the stars. To be honest, I don’t know the answer. There are days when I’m dying for more success. I want my music to be heard, I want to sing for as many people as I can find; then there are other days when the joy of singing alone in my studio is so profound that I can’t imagine needing anything more.

Today, I’ll work towards the bigger goal because there are new songs that I want to share. To do so, many things have to be put into place. I’ll work on those things this morning. Later today, I’ll fix a piano part, check a vocal I recorded that I’m not sure of, and then sit down to work on the lyrics for the last song I have to record. They’ve eluded me so far, but I’m hopeful.

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