Saturday, October 10, 2020

I Might Be Ancient But I Still Work

While replacing a spray can on the bathroom shelf this morning, a thought crossed my mind - "It's ancient, but it still works." Although I was referring to the can, I kept thinking about that phrase - it can apply to so much in my life. DH and I are ancient - along with my sister-in-law, we're the old ones in the family now. The kids I watched grow up and took to the circus and to Sesame Street performances are grown up with children of their own now. My own older generation is long gone - buried or burned, thought of often, but not constantly, and remembered with the bloom of distance instead of the knife-edge of daily interaction. 

My father raised me on Greek Mythology. To honor 
him, I've chosen this Greek owl. Ancient but still 

"It's ancient, but it still works," applies to my business, my house, and in so many ways, my life. As I learn new skills and hone older ones, I'm trying to keep active, to keep my mind alert and creative, and to not fall into ruts. Ruts are boring and non-productive. In many ways I envy people who found one thing they loved and concentrated on that one thing to the exclusion of other temptations. 

My mother was a bit more modern than Dad was, 
she would have been more comfortable in Ancient 
Rome, working with fabric, I'm sure, since fabric 
was her constant throughout her life. She was like 
me, though. She had a lot of interests through her 
life and was always creative and artistic. 

I'm not like that. I find one thing, dive in, swim into the deep end, and explore it as much as possible. Then I find another thing and repeat the process. Then my thoughts turn to "Can I combine these two things?" and I'm off and running on a third parameter, the line that will pull the two things into a geometric form. But then I see another thing and I'm off once again. I flit, as my husband calls it. I flit from one thing to another. But what he doesn't understand is my deep love for the variety of skills I've developed. 

My father-in-law would probably have been at home with 
Medieval warfare and siege mentality. He was a hunter and 
fisherman, a woodsman who taught his sons how to shoot 
and fish. He pretty much ignored the women in his life. 
His wife tolerated it, his daughter never forgave him. 

I call myself a multi-media artist, and in so many ways I am. When I'm working on fiber or fabric, I'm thinking about how I could present the finished items in one of my customized boxes. When I think about my boxes, I think about how I can decorate the tops of them with metalwork and enamel, beads and threads, and painted silks. I'm happiest when I can combine things into amazing creations, but it's the actual making of each segment that thrills me. 

I suspect my mother-in-law would have fit well into 
a Medieval nunnery. That quiet life of semi-solitude, 
prayer and contemplation would have suited her well. 
I adored her, she was a remarkable woman with quiet 
strength who rarely raised her voice. My husband 
worshiped her and visited her every day. 

So, I'm watching video after video on my new knitting machine and hoping to actually play with some yarn next Wednesday. I'm weaving row after row on my shawl and hoping to finish it sometime next year, and maybe make a box for it. I'm thinking about my enameling space and materials, my etching chemicals and materials, and my jewelry making studio in the breezeway. I'm looking forward to the time next year when I can close the door to the shop for the final time, breathe a sigh of relief, and start a new section of my life. I might be ancient, but I still work. 

Have an excellent weekend and I'll be back on Monday. As always, stay safe, be well, and please wear your mask. 

No comments: