• Keiko Hayner

New Start!

Today was the day that my son started his new preschool. I was excited and nervous for him at the same time after good 7 months long of staying home together. He started going to his previous daycare/preschool since he was a 10-week old itty-bitty baby, so the 7 months that we had together had some challenges by experiencing the total corruption & re-establishment of our new routine and testing my creativity of what to do with him.

As I was telling him "I will pick you up after your nap time" at a gate of his new school this morning, he waved his little hand to me. I was more nervous at that point, but I was just hoping that he would have a good day. It doesn't have to be the greatest day ever, but just a decent day... I went home and immediately tried to distract my mind by working on two submission work pieces for November all the way until 2pm.

Then one moment I thought myself that this was such a new start for all of us. When this pandemic and lockdown happened back in March, I didn't know (I should say, I couldn't imagine) how much upside down our lives would experience. I lost my job, my both kids were stuck home, and I literally felt hitting rock bottom. Going through an identity crisis, not knowing what to do, and hearing a phrase "taking things day by day" gave me fed-up feelings. There were days in a beginning of pandemic that I started pouring wine to a glass in the early afternoons just as my attempt of escape from reality, and that never worked.

After a certain time I realized that painting was the only thing that I felt self-fulfillment, calm, and motivated. So, I kept painting, painting, painting... During the 7 months I didn't only discover my new skills and imaginations emerging, but also I started noticing what "my style" was. I believe this will be continuously changing just like how we change as a person - We get older, become wiser hopefully, and see things differently.

I told one of my closest friend today that I have never been this motivated for a long time. Because my son's first day of school gave me some excitement and motivation? I'm not sure... but I felt like we were able to survive from the rock bottom by figuring out one by one, making mistakes constantly, learning new normal and new us. So, here we are... 7 months later my little boy had his first good decent day at his school and I am a freelance illustrator/artist in progress. Maybe we couldn't be who/where we are if all this never happened.

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