Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A rose by any other name...

Impractical - unrealistic, incapable of being accomplished or dealt with, not workable, speculative. Palette - a. The range of colors used in a particular painting or by a particular artist. b. range of qualities inherent in nongraphic art forms such as music, literature.

Names have always been an issue for me. First of all, Miss Barbara never called out my name on Romper Room. Devastating as a child in the 70s. My parents thought they were being original with my name - and yet, there were four of us Kristins in one grade school class. No one could ever spell it right; they always wanted to change the beginning to Ch- or the ending to -en. Then there was the issue of naming my dog when I was three. The adults said I could name her anything I wanted. I chose French Fry. I had my reasons. She was a French poodle. I loved fries. Made sense to me. Apparently not to my parents, who chose Holly because I was getting her for my birthday and well - let's just remind Kristin once again how her birthday falls so very close to and is always overwhelmed by the frenetic pace and pageantry that is the Christmas season.

So naming my blog became a dilemma in the past few days. Perhaps I was using it as my own self-imposed writing block. I could say I was starting a blog...but if I couldn't come up with the right name, well...I didn't have to start. I thought about calling it by my old editorial column's moniker. In Other Words fit my life back in Minnesota, when it seemed my "Chicago ideas" butted heads with much of the Old Boy's Club that existed in the little patch of small town America I called home for eight years.

But now I have a new life, no - I'd call it a renewed life, back in Illinois. I exist with a full palette, a range of colors from which to draw. I'm a mother of a Tween girl and a Teen man-child who are amazing and unpredictable (which is a nice way of saying I love them to death but want to wring their necks on a regular basis). I have raised them completely on my own for well over seven years now, both emotionally and financially. I'm recently unemployed and looking to reinvent myself again as I head back to college at the age of 39. I've made my living as a sports reporter turned editor and publisher, tended bar, managed a restaurant, a hiphop clothing store and a graphic design firm, earned my insurance license only to realize I hated the industry, and just ended a five year post teaching art and development classes to children.

I'm passionate, stubborn and impetuous; I'll tell you my opinion on almost anything. I crave art and photography and cooking and baking - which, by the way, is a highly impractical hobby to develop when you are also trying to lose 15 pounds. I spend way too much time on Facebook and almost never answer my phone or listen to my voicemail. I love music for the words and the guitar riffs - one minute it's Nine Inch Nails, the next it's Keith Urban. I have crazy dreams - at night and in real life. I count many as my friends but only a rare few have seen the fully unguarded Kristin. And I've never had much difficulty seeking out adventure as trouble always seems to find me first.

I'm often ridiculously glass half-full but only after climbing many a mountain in my close to four decades on this planet. I am learning to live with Sarcoidosis, which I was diagnosed with in October and has focused my priorities and sped up the timetable of all the things I still want to experience in this life. There are planes to be jumped from and coral reefs to be snorkeled, my first tattoo and my daughter and I's trip to Paris. There's homework for all three of us, relationships to nurture, art to be created, karoake to be sung, medical appointments and tests to schedule, and, of course, dinner to be made.

All these colors, all these hues and shades, all add up to create the painting that is Kristin. The existence I lead every day reads more like a recipe for disaster. It probably wouldn't be believed if an author provided it to you as a character study. And yet, it is my life. Kristin and her impractical palette. Whatever name you call it, it sounds sweet to me...

1 comment:

  1. Welcome to blogland one of my oldest and dearest friends! You made a big splash here today and I love your impractical palette. It is charming, endearing, honest and oh so very you! Were really not as old in spirit are we? I read a wonderful quote yesterday. "she went out on a limb, broke the branch, and then she flew.". That is where I can be found these days... Flying...and so are you!