Too much pressure.

Photo by Caique Silva on Pexels.com

Please don’t mistake me or try to make me

The shadow of anybody else

I ain’t the him or her you think I am

I’m just trying hard to be myself

Oh, society’s goal is to be part of the whole

That may sound good to you, not to me

The Turtles, Let Me Be

All I wanted was the ability to share my art with the world…. and it has turned in to half disaster, half success.

I don’t know how i’m supposed to handle it.

For a bit of a backstory, I posted some of my cat themed art in to some various cat facebook groups. Some were more receptive than others, some banned me for accidentally violating their rules (even though I had made a google docs with the different groups and varying rules), and my facebook exploded. Messages, friends requests, a lot were welcomed with open arms but it was non stop and very anxiety inducing. I already have very, very bad anxiety but this actually made it a lot worse.

I ended up making my own group, Nice Cats for Nice People. We actually welcome those who are Neurodiverse, who want to share their cat-related art and etsy store and try to adhere to less stringent rules.


I then had people writing me, telling me how they thought I was violating (cat facebook group) rules and giving me feedback I didn’t ask for, which made me even more agitated. I can’t tell you how many new people i’ve had to cut ties with. It just hasn’t been healthy for me.

Yesterday, I was in the car, traveling to go to a concert and I cried. I flailed my hands for a short few seconds. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I didn’t want to do anything but go back home, miss the concert and weep in bed. This was after a few people decided to tell me that I was oversharing the negative messages I was receiving on my facebook page and some of the private messages sent to me seemed to have a good intention but had a lot of unwanted, “real” or “brutally honest” advice that I didn’t ask for. I was already on the brink of an emotional collapse and that sent me over the edge.

There have been incredibly positive people and really negative people.

There’s also those who don’t understand:

There’s even people who believe it’s okay to tell me that I clearly have issues after i’ve made it incredibly clear that I suffer from mental illness, which is intertwined with being Autistic.

Being Autistic is not an excuse, It’s a NEUROTYPE! It’s part of who I am and why I behave the way I do. I honestly can’t even believe I have to justify myself to anybody but I have to write this because these things keep happening to me over and over again. I also had to reiterate that my artwork and my Autism are very much hand-in-hand and that I utilize my art to talk about Autism and vice versa. I have HUNDREDS of pieces i’ve art that i’ve painted. I’m not new to this at all. I have been making art my entire life.

There was a time where I really only worked intuitively and for myself, as a way to relax and unwind. When people can’t understand why a pet portrait costs 150.00 USD, I don’t really know what to say without sounding really upset and hurt. It’s a lot to take the personality of someone’s cat and turn that in to my own style. If i’m working intuitively, I don’t think. I don’t need to plan the way something looks, copy features and make it look like someone’s best friend. Getting the features right and the art completely perfect puts so much pressure on me to appease my customer. I’m almost at the point where I have to set my price at something that aligns with my thoughts of “how much would it take for me to drag my ass out of bed and paint something for someone else?” Honestly, I don’t even know what that price would be.

I even made an FAQ because I kept getting asked questions over and over again.

My brain is not only wired differently due to the fact that I am Autistic, but my chronic depression, anxiety and poor coping methods are linked to the fact that I spent 15 years or so being verbally and emotionally abused by my father…EVERY SINGLE DAY. Add that to the childhood bullying and ostracization from my peers at school and you have a brain that suffered from a lot of trauma during it’s most vital developmental years. I also hear that if you’re removed from your mother immediately after birth, which I was, that can also lead to developmental issues. I also am learning disabled. I never graduated, I got my GED instead.

I really want those reading this to understand a few things so i’m linking them below.

I hope this provided insight in to just some of the things I am struggling with. Please be kind.

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Evolving, slowly.

I’ve been working on new patterns while we wait for our fabric tags for retrophiliac and co.

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I am very anxious and I have been really internalizing my stress. I’m trying not to, but my appetite is gone and my sleep patterns are all screwed up. I’m napping a lot and I haven’t gone outside as much as I should.

I’m going through a dramatic change. I have a job interview next week and I am crossing my fingers that I get it. It’s something i’ve done before and loved immensely. It’s also walking distance from where I am staying and right down the street from where my sister works.

Making friends or having a social life and getting involved in things that this city has to offer is something I would like to do a lot more of. I feel incredibly lucky to be back here, surrounded by family. I never felt like I spent enough time with them.

Please bear with me. I am growing as a person!

-Margaux

My Thoughts on VegExpo 2018 Vancouver

I’ve been a Vegetarian for roughly 15 years, so naturally i’ve wanted to go to VegExpo. It was incredibly busy! You had to push past part of the crowds to get anywhere so that was a bit tedious. The fact I had the chance to connect with brands that I already love, taste delicious new treats and be immersed in a space with likeminded people made it completely worth it.¬†They had over 200 vendors. The location was the Vancouver Convention Centre and it ran from 10 until 5pm. We got there at around 10:15, waited in line for about 15 minutes and got in at 10:30. We stayed for 3 hours and I’m really happy we went early. As the day went on it just kept getting busier. It’s really nice to see something of this calibre be such a success.

Back when I was employed in the retail health food sector, I had the privilege of going to CHFA. This, being a show open to the public and not just exclusive to retailers and wholesalers, was, well, very different: The demographic and the approach by companies was more tailored to their customer base. It was interesting to compare and contrast.

I was really happy that I was able to talk a bit about my story and connect with brands that seem to align with my vision and values. I hope this gives me some opportunities for some great taste test videos (did you see this one?)!

 

Here are the brands/companies/associations that I mention in my video above: 

I can’t wait to taste some of the goodies i’ve brought home.

Are you following a strict diet? Are you Vegan or Vegetarian or have food aversions? I’d love to hear about your story!

Thank you so much for your continued support,

Margaux

 

PlanetBox Rover Review!

Thank you PlanetBox for sending me this product in exchange for my very honest review.

This is the Rover model, It’s a stainless steel bento-style lunchbox which amps up your creativity and can definitely promote the healthiest lunches. Perfect for Adults & Kids alike. I am in a childfree household but I could see my Niece and Nephew loving this for School. You have your choice of many different magnet designs to excite, create fun and personalization. There are two “dippers” which can hold dips, sauces, fruit and much, much more!

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I opted to create a delicious meal full of produce, crackers, cheese and cookies! The possibilities are truly “sky-high”. Without the magnets, the box can be hand washed or put in the dishwasher.

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You can also get your choice of a variety of lunch bags which perfectly fit your PlanetBox. There’s room for an ice pack, utensils, a drink and a pocket in the front for napkins or even more food.

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Thank you PlanetBox, I can’t wait to use this year round and in Summer-time. It’s going to make picnics really easy. Also great for those who can’t STAND their food touching other food–it’s perfection, all in one!