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standing on the edge of the cliff

When you stand at the edge of the cliff, jump to fly, not to fall.

~ Robert Orben

This is where I am right now.  Standing on the edge of a cliff, looking down at what’s below, my toes peaking over the side.  Do I jump or do I fly?

I have been a jewelry artist since 1999.  That was a whole other century!   When I started on this journey, I mainly was looking for a way to use up some of the hours in my day.  My daughter was just a few months old and my husband had been deployed overseas.  My daughter was SUCH a good baby!  She slept a lot, ate well, and had a regular steady routine without much effort on my side of things.  And, while this was a huge blessing for me, the downside was that I had a lot more free time on my hands than I had planned for.  I had always worked and worked a lot. Ever since I was 15 I always had one or two jobs at a time.  Sitting still is not in my DNA.

So I started jewelry making and I was hooked.  Since then, my life has had the normal ups and downs, but jewelry making has stuck.  In 2010, I had the opportunity to join with the wonderful ladies at The Palette & The Page gallery (of course, that wasn’t the name then, but that’s another story).  Joining the gallery was a big decision, it’s been a bit like a marriage. I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into and truthfully, I don’t know if I would have made the same decision if I had known.  But in the end, it has been a wonderful time of new experiences and personal, professional & artistic growth for me.

But, there has been a negative.

The gallery has given me something to hide behind.  There’s no need to focus on my own art & developing my own business & success.  It’s just been so much easier & safer to focus on the success of the gallery.  As an artist, it is so hard to put yourself out there.  Every piece I create comes from my heart & soul.  And, showing others that work is like allowing someone a little peek inside. What if you see the dark & insecure places in there? The places that constantly whisper to me that my work is no good, that I’m fooling myself and have no talent… what if that’s what everyone else knows?

When I thought about this more, I realized that I think the problem is just letting people see the “peek” inside.  Just allowing a “peek” suggests that you are only seeing a tiny fraction of the whole; and that there is more hiding in the dark corners.  So every peek there remains the fear that someone will see something that you didn’t intend, that they’ll get a look at the dark corners you are working so hard to hide; that they’ll see the magician behind the curtain.  Maybe the solution is to rip open the curtain and let the light shine into the deepest, darkest corners.

So, that’s what you’ll find from me here.  You’ll follow along with my journey to step out of the shadows.  I’m gonna let you see the ups and downs; all the good & the bad.  I hope that you’ll laugh & cry along with me.  There’ll be posts about developing my business and art, posts about my family & home life – gardening, puppies, my grown kids, etc; and,  a little sprinkling of the military spouse experience.  Hopefully, some travel too now that the COVID situation seems to be improving.  I’m opening up the curtain & letting you see all that’s inside.

Now it is time to step out from the shadows and step up to the edge of the cliff.   I. Am. Terrified.  But, I am not going to let that stop me!  I am going all in!