The pieces I am working on now have great form, solid foundations and the design is timeless. They were created to last, to go through the years and continue to serve as useful pieces in a home. As I was removing the faded, dingy and banged up finishes, I uncovered a story of color changes, use changes and finally the pieces were discarded to the back of the shed.
We begin with a good foundation (at least most of us) and we have good form, strong bones and we are built to endure the test of time. We have our own style, unique and beautiful and completely individual. Then someone comes along our path, takes a look at us and decides we would look better, be more successful or more desirable if we accented with this color, changed our hair or maybe a complete makeover. So we do it, we change our appearance, our mannerisms, our relationships in response to someone else's opinion of who or what we should be. When that doesn't work out for us then we listen to the next great idea and so on and so on.
One day we wake up, look in the mirror and we do not recognize the person gazing back at us. We have lost ourselves, what made us special, an individual that stands out among the crowd. When this happens we lose touch with our soul. The very essence of our individuality.
I make it a point to take time during this season of transition between summer and fall to evaluate myself, my work, my family and my goals. I look at what didn't work and I get rid of it. I look at what seems to be working and I strengthen it and then I set new goals. I look in my soul and take a hard look at who I am and if I am being true to myself. Is the work I am doing, the health and strength of my family, my relationships and my contributions to the community making this world better? Am I creating or just glossing over things with a new color?
Then I get to work, I grind off the old stuff, smooth the rough edges, reinforce the design and style that is unique; making sure that the beauty that was intended from the beginning is all that shines through with a light that can help change the world.