The last few months have been emotionally unstable for me . . . preparing for my first-born's high school graduation, along with the the entire 'visiting colleges', vacations, and children's end-of-year activities, I feel like there is no me left.
I have managed to squeeze in a few art related activities - finishing 5 new art works for an application for an exhibition in London (which I didn't get into, but which was a great motivator).
Choosing to continue with the CONSTRAINT series, I created:
Initially, first reactions seem to be shock, and then, either horror or hilarity.
I mean them to be visual jesters which have an underlying message about role models and institutions. As a bride, I refused to say "obey" and as bride and groom, my husband and I attempted to have a garden wedding with a non-denominational vow exchange. Unfortunately, after the family friend (minister) had agreed in July to the vows we had chosen, he decided the NIGHT BEFORE OUR WEDDING to announce to us that he would be using his King James/Fundamental Baptist wording. We were NOT happy to say the least. We felt TRAPPED by the trickery . . . yet we had 75 invites out, the Civil War era home we had rented was decorated . . . what to do? We got married anyway and I cried through the entire ceremony because it was not what we wanted. Comments which were relayed to me after the wedding caused me to not speak to certain family members for 3 months. It was awful. I shudder at the memories of my own wedding.
Regarding "Post-Partum", I was thinking about the shock of bringing home a newborn and the emotional upheaval, not to mention the hormonal, changes. It is difficult even if you are not dealing with depression, gestational diabetes, breast-feeding, etc. This work also correlates with the "A PAXIL A DAY" and "COPING SKILLS" series, in that I had issues with pregnancy difficulties and depression. On a broader scale, it simply visualizes the constraints parenthood puts on the family and couplehood dynamics.
One concern I have with marriage, as seen in "Rat Trap", is that once married, the couple tends to lose their 'romance' and 'infatuations' with one another. Having been divorced, I was terrified that our marriage might END our love. I am happy to say, 20 years later, that, for us, that was not the case.
What are the reactions you have to these works? I would love to hear YOUR impressions and thoughts on marriage and parenthood!