I’ve been having a lot of mask-related dreams in the last few weeks where I am in a public space and either I am not wearing a mask and everyone else is, or I am wearing a mask and everyone else is not. At first I thought these were like test dreams – where you go to take a test and can’t find the room, aren’t wearing pants, have forgotten everything – which are always coded as dreams about anxiety. I thought the mask dreams were similar because anxious distress hallmarked my interactions in those dreams. But this week I’ve come to understand them as dreams about not being in proper relation to others. My distress is about the mismatch between my state and the state of others, my relationality, and it is this that provokes the anxiety. As a dream-message this makes a lot more sense to me given where we are at in the pandemic. By now, I had hoped to be in greater relationship with others again, but instead we are in a deadlier third wave and still waiting for vaccination. No wonder my subconscious is telling me that I’m not relating as I “should”.
One thing I have been working steadily on all week is getting my loom warped. I started this project two weeks ago but something went really wrong in the warping process and I had to scrap my first attempt. I finished threading this second attempt and got it all wound onto the beam on Wednesday night. This morning I threw a few shots in it to make sure it was set up correctly and voila! It might be the best warp I’ve every put on in terms of a clean shed:
This fabric will be used to make four kitchen towels of different colours. It’s not a very exciting pattern, but I wanted something simple to put on and weave off the loom for a quick set of dish towels (two of my old ones got holes recently). I frequently envision and try to execute really grand projects, but the truth is that simple is better and more do-able given all my other projects and work commitments on the go. For this weave, I took four shafts off my (eight-shaft) loom to make the whole enterprise easier and am I ever glad I did. Note to self: when I cut corners by leaving empty shafts and lamms tied up, it actually makes everything more difficult and time-consuming.
In addition to getting the loom warped, I also finished sewing a dress/tunic on Monday though I have no photos to prove it yet.
I found out this week that there is nothing wrong with leg that swelled up a couple of weeks ago. The metal plate hasn’t shifted, the bone healed fine underneath it 18 years ago, and there is no deterioration of the bone. The doctor thought it had just been aggravated somehow but told me that unless it continues to swell up, there is nothing to worry about. That’s good news for sure, but I find myself asking if I want to return to running even now that I know the striking impact isn’t harming me in any way. One of the ways that I’ve coped with the pandemic is by getting a bit exercise-obsessed, adding running to an already full schedule of weight lifting, yoga and walking. After taking a week off from everything when I got the swelling, I realized that all the activity is really crowding out other things, including my ability to sit/be quiet/think. I don’t want to give up the weight lifting which has measurably changed my life, and walking is pretty social for me. Yoga is intermittent/non-obsessive. But running, quite frankly, feels like a lot of work for little additional benefit. Perhaps as nicer weather rolls around I will find it calling to me again, but for now I’m happy for a bit more time to do other things than exercise.
In carrying on with the theme of giving things up, I am well on my way to my 2-year retirement plan from my union position and have successfully referred several union matters to my new shop stewards in the last couple of weeks. Every time I *don’t* take something new on, I feel a little relief run through me. While I still have to help the new reps with their grievances, responses to inquiries and so on, just the fact that I don’t have to interface with upset people every day feels like a huge weight lifted off of me. It’s also making me aware of just how much stuff I was fielding in the first place as I try to ensure that I don’t overload anyone (for the last couple of years, there have literally been two of us taking every case – now I have several people on board to distribute the work to).
On the Birdsong Gabriola front, I finally got the domain fixed on the new website so I can share birdsongisland.ca with you. Yesterday I confirmed out summer line-up of local musicians for a yard concert series starting at the end of June – which isn’t on the website yet but will be by the end of the month. Just the other day, Brian and I were out in the yard and a woman I’ve never seen before pulled her car up and got out to ask if we could put her on the email list for the house concerts – so clearly I’m not the only one in need of some social music time these days! I am quite hopeful that outdoor shows in mid-summer with vaccinated people will be allowed, making this a little bright spot to look forward to.
The BC pandemic numbers may be high, but at least it’s Friday and we have some sun on the horizon for the next several days. If you subscribe to Comfort for the Apocalypse you’ll be hearing from me on Sunday – but otherwise I’ve got few plans for the weekend coming other than writing, weaving, and playing some music. Hope you are all well out there in quaran-land.