"Tried cheering myself up today with painting. Kiddies had fun. Just used our fingers. Added paint to canvas to see what we came up with. Then once I started I couldn't stop, did four paintings (kiddies had fun, did two each on card cos they want to cut theirs into fun shakes when dry) for me it was more about trying to express how chaotic everything feels to me lately, especially inside in my head. The pressure to be a good mum, a good person, a good citizen. It's impossible to be all those things these days. You're not a good enough citizen if you're on benefits, you're not a good enough mum if you're single, you're not a good enough person if you're mentally struggling. That's what women are told. I'm never good enough. That's the message in the world I'm trying to protect my kids from. I don't fit into this world, I have no asperations, no drive or greed for money or better. No dream job beyond giving my kids the best life I can. So long as we're fed and warm and safe, I'm content. I'm not a perfect mother, much as I love my kids and days are filled with sparks of joy, I'm worn out and sometimes snappy and so dead tired. I just want to sleep. Parenting is beautiful but it's also messy, unclear and sometimes scary as hell. Love is all that keeps us going sometimes. Then my head itself, always full of ideas, floating around my mind like particles in water. Impossible to keep track of one long enough to actually do anything with it, stories I want to write, art I want to do, things I want to show the kids. Always so easy to think of but so hard to translate into reality. Even harder these days, when ways of expressing oneself are limit by finances, by opportunity and freedoms, by security and safety. By hunger or health.

It's mind boggling to me to think how anyone could think the benefits system keeps us safe, it just keeps us submissive. In our place. Less valuable, less worthy. A societal warning to those lucky enough to not be us, for those who work enough to be deemed worthy, for those who earn enough to be deemed valuable. Everyone wants something from everyone else. Few will give if they can't receive in return. No good deed ever goes unpunished in a world where worth is measured by tax brackets.

Anyway, here's the paintings if anyone would like to see them: The heart one is called "parenthood"; the purple one is called "asperations"; the blue/silver is called "thought"; and the purple/blue/silver is called "ideas". Wish I could convey the textures of these paintings, they're far more about their peaks and layers than just the colours and pattern. For me art us more than looking, it's also feeling (both literally and figuratively lol). But maybe someone will still like them. Abstract and simplistic, but I like that in a paintings. Like me, abstract, not always very clear and pretty simple, but still worthy of being called art. Still beautiful. Still valuable, if only to me."

Victoria B
Jan 15, 2021

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