If this month has felt like a year for you, you are not alone. So many things have happened, from the much-needed change in administration to the GameStop Stock controversy)- it's been a lot to digest. Despite the pandemic, life goes on. Nevermind that we've been adjusting to this way of life for almost a year now, but now a lot of people are reaching the final stages of grief of the loss of life as we knew it, and accepting that this is the reality for now.
For me, staying home most of the time has its pros and cons; on one hand, my commute to work and school is a lot shorter- just have to find a spot in my room to Zoom meeting my way through the day. All that time I spent getting to and from school could be spent doing other things, like writing, filming, drawing- creating more. For some reason, I thought because the world seemingly stopped and thus changed dramatically, I'd get the time to work on my creative endeavors more than ever. Plus, we are living through a major historical event- ideas should drop in like clockwork!
Except it didn't. Or hasn't for that matter.
I spent my winter break rushing around for the holidays, writing and mailing last-minute gifts and cards, then relaxing from a fully remote yet long semester. Work was home and home was work and without a way to distinguish the two, I never felt like work ended. And the times I did get to relax, I kept thinking about other responsibilities that I should be doing other than what I was doing at the time. In other words, I tried to stay busy, but I was busy with the wrong things. I remember wanting to create so badly that I cried- tears hot with frustration at the fact that I am a semester away from graduation, and I was second-guessing my entire field of study.
This is not uncommon for creatives- especially living the way we do now. "Home" was where I'd go after a long day of commuting, going to class, etc- to destress and purposely relax, letting go of the rest of the day. It was in that state where my most electrifying and intriguing ideas would suddenly flow into my brain- maybe it was based on something that happened that day or a random memory or encounter I could recall. I find it hard to rest now- and that in turn makes me anxious for an idea. Something to distract me from the time we are in, something to take me back to how things used to be.
At this point, you may be relating to my experience, and if you are, I have some hope for you that I am trying to believe for myself- this is not the end for you. It is not the end of your creative journey, far from it. You may see that for some people, they have made these circumstances work for them. It just seems like they're dishing out content like nobody's business. Everyone shows the final product and maybe the stages leading up to that- but no one shares the process.
It's ugly- it's a fight. You'll want to scream until your brain decides to work again. But it's all a part of the journey. This pandemic has been a lot of us mentally, physically, emotionally and creative projects often take a toll on all of these aspects as well. But my final word of advice is not to force it- let yourself go through the process as ugly as it may be. And don't put a timeline to it; it could take days, weeks maybe a month or two. But those who were born to create, chose this path, this life and it is their passion from beginning to middle to end- you will find that drive again. Just let it all ride out- binge on shows, movies, youtube videos. Take walks, sleep! Live life as best (and as safely) as you can, and one day who knows- you might find what you've been looking for, without even looking for it.