Imagining another universe

Skelly Dance at Bougival detail

Skelly Dance at Bougival detail

I am so done with dieting

I wish I were like one of my skellies and had no flesh hanging around my waist, a constant reminder of my love affair with chips and chocolate and laying on the couch reading the day away.

Steve says I make him feel guilty weekends because I am always working — painting, documenting, posting — and he feels like a slacker in comparison.

But the truth is, I screw off during the week. When I’m alone in the house, I have to flog myself to paint most days. There are oh so many distractions — housework, the internet, phone calls from family and friends. Sometimes I make up reasons to resent my lack of ambition, like, “I bet Degas didn’t have to clean his own kitchen or wash clothes or make dog food.” Which is ridiculous because if you think about it, I don’t have to any of those things either.

I could hire it all out, for one. I could just refuse to do it, for two. Eventually, Steve would take it over. Probably.

Making art is harder than I expected it would be. I spent most of my adult life making art for other people via a graphic design business and fantasizing about what it would be like to be a “fine artist.”

I had it all pictured. I’d have long, tangled hair, dirty feet, dozens of admirers. I’d work in a studio full of canvases and sculptures, making stuff all day and into the night, stopping only to dance to jazzy music, smoke thin cigarettes and drink coal black coffee. Every day someone in business casual attire would show up to take away the finished pieces and hand me a check with multiple zeroes on it. I’d sleep with whoever was convenient and do it all again the next day.

You’ll note there is no husband in this daydream, no family, no dogs. All the things that tie me to my present life are nowhere to be found in my alternate life, the life I lived while in another pant leg of time.

I don’t regret my current life. I love my husband, my kids, my dogs. Just sometimes I wonder what it would have been like to live that other life.

Like, would I still be thin?


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