I’m currently sitting beside a rather large unfinished canvas; and no, I don’t mean my life. This canvas has been mocking me for months. Oh, I know what you’re thinking, “What’s the big deal? Either finish the painting or move on.” It’s the moving on part that has me in a bit of a funk.
The painting – like everything else I create or become involved in – must be perfect in my eyes before I’ll walk away. It must be the best I can do. I’ve walked away from relationships with that same thought, “It was the best I could do.” I haven’t reached the boiling point with this specific painting, so it sits here, greeting all who enter. “I see your mom still hasn’t finished that painting” has been said many, many times in the last several months… Thanks, boys.
It isn’t the only painting I’ve started in that time, it’s just the only one that hasn’t been completed. I nitpick it incessantly, but it needs to be just so. Every new brushstroke gives me anxiety, so I take breaks. I’m afraid I’ll do something and change it, and the painting will warp into something indefinable and rubbish. “They” say “Change is good.” That’s a dodgy, unhelpful comment, isn’t it? Surely not all change is good?
At some point the painting – a portrait – will be finished. He’ll have a face and everything! But in the meantime, he sits with me, this silent, faceless companion watching this sea of changes come. I get the feeling I’m not the only one anxious about this.