Catching Up with Calendar Drawings, Part 1 // A.C.

Catching Up with Calendar Drawings, Part 1 // A.C.

At the end of last year, I swore to bring back the daily drawings in my JIYU Monthly Calendar spread…and I return now with the pages of that promise!

It’s been a few months since I had the breathing room to write a BK Story, but I’m glad to be back. Lately, the one consistency in my life has been an overarching feeling that I’m playing catch-up. Catching up with work projects that were left in bits and pieces of progress after unexpected life events bubbled up. Catching up with friends, which usually opens with an exchange of bewildered comments on how a quarter of the year is already over. Maybe my age or the state of my mental health will show unflatteringly here, but I also feel subject to the push and pull of deeper tides: when was the last time I felt caught up with myself, with where I thought I would be by now in my life? When was the last time I didn’t feel like I was just getting by?

Sometimes it seems to me that journals, with their blank pages like so many blank expressions, tell me in no uncertain terms just how much I’ve missed. For example, right now there’s a two-week chunk missing from February in my Hobonichi 5-year journal. As the completionist sort, this is driving me nuts. “You’re so fastidious,” Emil said when I told him this. “I’d just leave it blank and move on.” That would be the more chill move, wouldn’t it. But I fully intend to write them in retroactively. Normally there’s no way I’d recall that lost time in any detail, but it’s possible because of other notebooks that I *did* manage to keep up with. By cross-referencing my weekly work plans and my stream-of-consciousness writing, I’ll be able to remember enough of what happened to capture it in a few sentences. (Not always, of course. Some entries just read “???” or “tired” or “I don’t remember what happened here”.)

I think it’s natural, when life feels out of control, to wish I was 100% up to date and certain of my course. But when I fall short of that, the journaling system I’ve built over the years is supportive of what I need. It reminds me that there’s a difference between constant and consistent. Take these calendar drawings: when things got really busy or depressing in February and March, I missed lots of squares. But by sifting through my other notes and through my phone’s camera roll, I could fill in the gaps once I had the energy to draw and remember again (and once I refilled my pen with the same ink color). You can barely tell, now, that those empty spaces were there. Willpower to set intentions, the ability to follow through on them, these are not things that I have constantly. But I can consistently try to pick them back up. An empty page still turns. And it’s never too late to catch up to yourself, if you remember that you can be the one who runs faster, but you can also be the one who stands still and, generously, waits.


Text and photos by: A.C. Esguerra

Where to find A.C. : instagram @blueludebar

Read other stories by A.C. : Here

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