Chaos theory

Last week, I gave up painting class. It’s not that I don’t like painting or my class. It’s that I need a break, my life, once again has gotten chaotic.

Piles dominate my studio, my new easel sits unused in a corner. Some of those piles are the result of me simplifying my life. When we repainted the kitchen and dining room, I removed everything from the kitchen shelves and put them in the studio. Nothing is returning to the kitchen unless I need it. So far there is more stuff in the studio than in the kitchen.

If you have been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that I have what I call enthusiasms. They are cyclic,though like long term weather patterns, we know that a pattern exists but aren’t really aware of them in our daily lives.

I thought that I wanted to be an Artist (with a capital A) but apparently not. Or it could simply be that I need a break and will return to painting with renewed vigor. At this time, however, I don’t have real goals. Without goals, I can’t have a plan, with out a plan I lack direction. Ultimately, I feel lost.

No matter what, I am a creative person, sometimes I feel driven to create, but the medium that I use doesn’t seem to be as important as the act of creating. For example, I am definitely a writer, this blog has lasted much longer than I ever expected it to.

Reading my most recent blog posts makes me realize that it’s sewing that is my current focus. I am so excited about the VPLL 1912 Project, every day, I check the blog and facebook site to see what is new. When I check my email, I find myself disappointed to see that my group still hasn’t received it’s own pattern to test. I drool over the other groups’ patterns and plan which one I will request next.

I realize that people who read my blog because they want to know about life in Mexico are probably no longer reading. However, my blog was never about life in Mexico, but rather My Life, which I am currently living in Mexico. After almost eight years, this is home and much of it doesn’t seem so remarkable. So I don’t remark upon it. Let me digress for a moment, on that vein. My friend Anny, told me story about watching a film that took place in some exotic land. The protagonist stops and stares dumbfounded at something, the camera pans a scene. Anny said she stared and stared at the screen, not seeing anything to cause that sort of reaction. Eventually, she realized that it was a bici-taxi. She’s lived in Mexico far longer than us and no longer finds those things odd and neither do I. In fact, I have a regular bici-taxista who takes us home from Chedraui and until this moment never thought to blog about him!

Detour over, back to our regularly scheduled ramble.

I’m always flattered that people read my blog. I get nervous when someone wants to meet me, afraid that I will disappoint them. After reading Why I love Theresa on Dispatches from Mérida, I wandered around in a bit of a daze. It´s an extremely flattering blog post, but how can I ever live up to that idealized version of me? I want to be that person, a good Buddhist, but sometimes I get caught up in the past or future and forget about the now.

Perhaps that is my problem, who I am now is not who I was a year ago when I began painting. Sewing and being a good seamstress (I dislike the new term “sewist” even more than I dislike “gringo” ) is not as glamorous as being an artist, but I’ve never seen myself as being glamorous, just as creative. I’ve always loved costume and it’s been a long time since I have gotten to indulge that passion.

I promise my readers that there will still be stuff about Mexico in my blog because living here affects my life. You may have to wade through some sewing stuff to read it but it will still be there.

About Theresa Diaz Gray

Born in New York City, I grew up in California, and have lived in 3 countries and 6 states. I'm a first generation Cuban-American who lives in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. I'm committed to living an abundant and creative life and helping others do so too through DIY!


  1. Brenda, I have been looking for “my thing”, I have no idea what that really means but I am sure like love, I will know it when I see it. I thought it was painting but it wasn’t.
    It could be fear of success but I doubt it. Right now I am reading “Couture Sewing Techniques” by Claire Shaeffer. I am pretty sure that isn’t my thing either, LOL.
    I appreciate all the support.

  2. First off I will miss you posting about your painting as I really enjoy your art.

    Second, I also have and have had many “enthusiasms” over the years. Some come, some go as seems to be your case also. I guess the ones that stick are the ones that mean something to our souls. I also sew so enjoy your posts about sewing also.

    My blog has also changed focus, as you say it is not “new” any more and what we see we are accustomed to now and it doesn’t feel interesting enough to write about. I forget that to others it might be different or interesting and therefore am not writing nearly as much anymore as I used to, also a lot of what we do socially is linked to others here and I don’t feel comfortable about splashing their lives all over my blog.

    Basically I just enjoy reading your blog and whatever you chose to write about I know I will enjoy reading.

  3. PQ, What kind words, I am flattered to hear that I inspire you.

    Ready-Thread-Sew, Being a bit of a Luddite, I like old fashioned words like alchemy and seamstress. In Spanish we are modistas and what we do is confeccionar ropa, it sounds so romantic to confeccionar.

    Getting here is not always easy, Merida is sort of in the middle of nowhere when it comes to flying in or out. However,I have heard that airfare to/from Europe are going down (it could be wishful thinking). Plus more flights out of Merida. Mexicana is flying again in September and is sure to have so good specials. There is always Cancun (it’s an inexpensive and comfortable 4 hour bus ride).

    Marianne,thank you. You are a dear friend!

    Steve, you are right, but I wanted to spell it out for everyone. Or maybe I was writing to myself? I’ve never kept a diary,so maybe this takes its place?

    Norm, Mr Dog is only one of his AKAs. Sometimes he is Señor Perro! I sometimes wonder how I ended up one of those little old ladies who cooks for her dog.

    Lee, now I have to go back and reread that post! They say short term memory is the first thing to go.
    I am sure that I am not the only one to have noticed you taking a vacation from blogging. Your blog is always a fun read. There are plenty of people in your situation, it’s part of the journey!

    To everyone, I appreciate you reading my blog! Thank you!


  4. But you DID write about the bici-taxi and Chedraui. I remember that post, back around the time I started reading your blog. I loved that post, and it may be what had me hooked. I found it again:

    I have taken a vacation from my blog, and I don’t think anyone noticed. It’s the bloggers IN Merida, not just dreaming about it, that are the real deal. Please don’t feel pressured to write about anything but what you feel moved to write about. As we say up here, “‘sall good.”

  5. A person who makes up special food for a dog who is called Mr. Dog had me from the start. As long as you write, I’ll read, it’s all good.

  6. These blogs are always primarily about us — and how we see Mexico in our daily lives. I gave up pretending that I was doing something else by simply sub-titling my work: “in the key of steve.”

  7. Don’t stress – it’s all artistic expression, whether acrylic on canvas or letters of the alphabet arranged on a computer screen or wearable fiber art. It’s unique and it’s you. And it’s all good.

  8. I found your blog in a very roundabout way, but enjoy your sewing posts because I am a sewist (I like the word – seamstress seems too old-fashioned to me). I love to read about Merida because I visited there once for a few days many years ago and fell completely in love with the city, but it is so difficult and expensive to get back there (I’m in the UK) so I’m enjoying reading some of the blogs about it.

    I also wanted to comment because I loved the word “enthusiasms” – it’s so much better than “hobbies”. I’ve had lots of enthusiasms over the years, but sewing is the one that has stuck – I think because I can actually wear the results, rather than just putting them on display somewhere in my home.

    Whether you are writing about sewing or Merida, I’ll be reading 🙂

  9. Creating is creating no matter if it’s painting, writing, designing, sewing, jewelry making or cooking….. (plus of course other things/activities)
    It should be whatever inspires you!
    Whatever you blog about, I find it inspiring. Thank you. PQ

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