“I don’t like being a beginner,” I told Jason not so long ago, nearly in tears.
In the course of making all of the beautiful pieces I have sketched and imagined, I can’t tell you how many pieces of fine gold and silver wire have snapped in my hand nearly leaving me eye-less.
I have spent nearly three years pouring through every book and tutorial and class I could get my hands on, prior to finally making the commitment to do this. I’ve even made some simpler pieces for men which I’ve already given as gifts. In fact, it was the reaction to these pieces that encouraged me to go “all in”, as they say.
It reminds me of Mark Twain’s saying –
“If you hold a cat by the tail you learn things you cannot learn any other way.”
I was even worse about this (if you can believe it) when I was in grade school. I absolutely wanted to be perfect. I wanted to be the best. I didn’t like feeling shaky and uncertain. I remember throwing myself on the ground crying when I felt I would never learn how to: borrow numbers in math, properly do a pirouette in ballet, run the relay in track, read notes in music. I thought about this as I sat on the floor, with my head against the wall, tears imminent. Then… I can do this.
I broke wire piece after wire piece over the next few hours. I lost expensive gems which rolled off my work space to be found, I presume, by the vacuum cleaner one day. I sliced my hands several times. And you know what … after awhile, it clicked. My hands started doing the motions without the Fear and overwhelming doubt.
So many of us never take on new things because we don’t want to take the time to be a beginner, or worse, don’t want to endure that painstaking process of Starting something which we are not perfect at immediately (*ahem, me).
I’m not saying that I won’t probably regress to my inner child again one day when I am learning more in this vast world of smithing and tinkering …. or in all of the other endeavors I have yet to embark upon in my life… I probably will. But I do plan on getting back up after my pity party…
And beginning again. (and again … and again …)