art career

Autoimmune Disease - Diagnosis Journey & RubyFEST

Hello friends and followers.

I feel that it is time to share on my public art platform about more details of my current life.

The first thing that I want to say is that, literally every moment of a day I am physically able to work on art, I am streaming it on my Twitch.tv for you to join in! So please follow me on twitch as MeheenRuby.

I’m actually typing this during a stream.

It’s a good way to boost my mood while “working” - I am on medical leave from all work at the moment and using art as a therapy tool to cope with my illness rather than a way to generate income since the first week of May.

In April I began to feel some serious health symptoms. The symptoms have progressed to the point where after early May I was physically unable to drive or complete my job tasks and many common household tasks.

As some of the physical symptoms have alleviated, specifically the pinched nerve injury, I still have serious symptoms from Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, Uterine fibroids and potential Endometriosis, and an Autoimmune myopathy, potentially myositis in some form.

Over the next several months I have many scheduled appointments including a consultation about proceeding with a diagnostic surgery.

I am optimistic and heartened by the love and support of my community.

Please clear your calendars for Friday, September 13th. I would like to share with you not just my work but the work of my support system of loving and talented artists, musicians, writers, scientists, and teachers.

I have received nothing but help from my community. Whatever ails me, I plan to adjust and heal as much as is reasonable. For now I have secure access to health care. However that may not always be the case if I am unable to do some serious fundraising. Shockingly my first needs fundraiser to cover housing costs and medical bill support became fully funded within 3 days and exceeded my expectations.

Please reach out to me if you would like to be involved in the first annual RubyFEST.

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"Occupation?" "artist" aka, the story of being grilled about my art during jury duty

I was serving my civic duty back in November, and had jury duty. There was a moment when, in front of a courtroom of about 170 people going through jury selection, I had the full attention of the room as the judge asked me vetting questions. Below is a bit paraphrased, excuse my memory.

"What is your occupation?" the honorable Carrie Panetta asked.

"I'm an artist." I replied. There was a bit of a mumble.

Smiling, Judge Panetta asked for some more details.

"Just an artist? You're able to make money?"

"I have several freelance jobs -- I do social media, graphic design, and music videos for a local musician, I sell my own art, and I work as an assistant to someone who makes small sculptures and jewelry, and I manage my family's farm website." I replied (though probably at the time with a lot more uhm's and stumbles for words).

"That's really great, I don't meet many artists who manage to get paid," was her smiling reply.

Then she went on to ask me all those lovely vetting questions pertaining to the case. At some point I must have mentioned my school because two different men came up to me to talk about Humboldt State and how awesome it was to be a Lumberjack. I heartily agreed.

I didn't end up serving on the jury -- there was an embarrassing moment when the defense lawyer mistook me for someone else and asked how old my children were. I must have made a bold facial expression because I was shocked, and the whole court started laughing. I managed to muster out "I don't have any". I have a tendency of wearing my emotions LOUDLY across my face! The defense lawyer excused me.