Holy shit. I got my green card. After two long years of delays and unknowns, the damn thing just showed up casually in the mail, unannounced, last Sunday afternoon. And I have FEELINGS.
The past two years I've struggled with feelings of inadequacy and a lack of control. It's hard to be unemployed in a capitalist society. People love the hypothetical question, "If you didn't have to work and could do whatever you wanted with your day, what would you do?" I actually experienced this scenario, and while I'm so grateful for the support systems that made it possible for me to remain in the country even with no way to make my own income, it was still really hard. It was so tough to know if it was the right decision to stay, when there were no guarantees that staying would be a long term option. On many, many occasions I wondered if I was wasting time here when I could be back in Canada working on building up an illustration career. But it's over now...time to look ahead.
Having nothing to do for two years and then all of a sudden this (literal) green light, my first reaction is overwhelm. Where do I start? what do I do? What do I want to do, and why the heck didn't I figure it out over the past two years? I sort of did, but now that it's time for action, I still feel stuck in the mud.
For now, I don't want to do anything drastic, just start small by announcing that I'm open for business. I think my ultimate goal will be to take on commercial illustration work, but I'm also interested in having a small online store to sell some original artwork and stickers. I'm also toying with the idea of finding a part time job I'd enjoy, art-related or not, just to have a chance to be out with people again regularly in the world (pandemic permitting of course).
These past two years that I spent practicing, learning, and really getting to know myself as an artist were a gift as much as a curse, and I'd be stupid not to see my privilege in this scenario. I feel confident in the foundation I've built and the community I've found, and whatever happens next I'm ready to focus on the good.
Thanks for reading! Luv ya.