Busy Busy Busy

Recently, I got some wonderful advice.  I am new to full-time work, having spent the last 16 years home raising the kids and working part-time.  This spring I returned to the field I worked in before becoming a mom (mental health).  I was excited to once again be using my degree and to be in a profession where I could possibly make a difference in someone’s life.  The only problem was the drain this took on my home life.  I kept at it, thinking I needed to work harder at finding that balance.  My family stepped up and helped around the house (the kids even took turns making dinner and doing the laundry).  This was a positive step, but I was still drained.  At the end of the summer I found another job closer to home, thinking a shorter commute would simplify things.  And it was in meeting with the Human Resource Manager in the last step of the hiring process that changed my focus and helped me to return to my passion.

I ended up talking to this wonderful, bright lady about my concerns with returning to full-time professional work – about how all the advice I had been given can be summed up with “yes, you’ll be tired and what you need to do is care less about the things you used to do”.  She said I did not have to settle for that.  What I needed to do was make a list of what was important to me and to have faith that I would find a job that would full-fill those needs.  It sounds simple, but at a time when the economy is so uncertain, and I have a teen-age boy on the cusp of college – could I afford to be so picky?  She said to give it time and to have faith that I would find something.  And to not leave my art out of the equation.

Well, she was 100% right.  I did not take the job at the facility where she worked.  The money would have been nice, as well as the hours and benefits (and the fabulous working environment) – but I knew it would drain my “creative juices”.  I instead found another job for a company I have long respected, for the same pay, without that emotional drain.  And since making that decision, I have created countless pieces of work.   I think my heart is telling me I am headed in the right direction. 🙂

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I have always loved the process of transforming pieces of fabric into quilts. For years I collected scraps, just to be sure I'd have the right piece for the project at hand. Eventually, as my skills progressed, my hobby grew into art. I moved from simple quits, to 'landscape quilting' and then eventually onto portrait work. I am new to the art field and am self-taught, learning from my mistakes as well as from my successes. I create my images using only fabric and thread. I remain true to this limitation for two reasons; first, I love the challenge of finding new ways to depict ever more challenging subjects. Second, fabric work remains my true love. I enjoy the hunt for fabrics; where other artists might blend oil paints, I love finding that perfect shade or pattern for a specific need. I refer to my style as "gestalt impressionism" for one needs to take a step back from my pieces to get the whole picture. My view point changes by what is influencing me at the time. Recently I've begun to focus on the journey of the individual. I enjoy working on portraits of people whom I feel have lead interesting lives.

Posted in Art Quilts
3 comments on “Busy Busy Busy
  1. Julie says:

    Good for you! Being a mom is tough and rewarding for sure!
    I actually just wrote a light-hearted parenting article for my column in this week’s paper in you want to check it out:
    http://julieloveshome.wordpress.com/2012/10/04/parenting-is-hard-dammit/#
    Thanks and good luck!
    Julie

  2. gonerustic says:

    You certainly did make the right decision – and the results speak for themselves! =D

  3. Betty Harris says:

    Good advice! Our lives are enriched by art — our own and others’. Time spent creating art is time spent growing. Good luck!

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