A few weeks ago, I got wind of an art exhibition for veterans in my county. I debated whether to apply, partly because I’m not sure critics would view my stuff as “real art.” Anyway, I did apply for the exhibit, which is in May. They accepted me, but then I was miserable for a month worrying and fretting about how others might react to my embellished wood scraps.
I tried to tell myself, do the thing that scares you and all that, but life is already pretty scary, and I don’t need to pile it on. It’s not a popular sentiment, but these days I’m all about making things easier. I fought the good fight and made it to retirement. I used to think big deal. Now, I think, hell yeah, big deal.
Retirement, they say, comes in phases. I’m in the easygoing phase and am doing my best to bypass the harder-than-it has-to-be-phase.
Although I rarely quit anything, I mean, do it until it hurts, I withdrew from the exhibit and feel great about the decision. Art is just a thing I do, no more, no less. I enjoy sharing it with you, but I don’t need to beat the streets seeking new audiences.
I was working on Number 36 whilst churning through all this, and I was so grumpy, trying to make it better. Normally, my mantra, is hey, it was just a piece of scrap wood, now it’s something else. So what if it’s not perfect? But thinking about judges and shit messed me up. I simply need to hang out in my garage and do what speaks to me.
So, number 36. What can I say? I love cats.
Donna Pekar is an aging badass (for real) who lives in California and writes Retirement Confidential.