10.19.2011

A bit of an adieu

I've been reading the amazing book, "Grace for the Good Girl," and teaching through it with my Sr. High Sunday School class. It resonates so much with my heart... I don't think I would have ever described myself necessarily as a "good girl," but I've definitely always been a self-professed people pleaser. It has been a mask I've hidden behind for a long time.

Last week, as I struggled to go to a birthday party, post to two blogs, prepare for teaching Children's Worship, rush off to my Sunday School class, bake something for an event later, meet with a few other ladies for a committee, gather ideas for our fall festival, and you know.... be a wife and a mother, I read this section in the book:

"My incessant need to be better than, to be important, to be liked and right and good on my own and by myself- these things pulsed just under the surface of my smiling exterior." 

That stings. It stings because it's true. 

"Good" means I never mess up. Good means I weigh the perfect amount. Good means I can handle everything, I don't look like a fool, and I never lose my patience. Good means my husband will never be disappointed in me, my kids will always obey, and everyone basically likes me. Good means I am enough. My goodness is all about me.
Grace for the Good Girl, by Emily P. Freeman, page 25

As beautiful and freeing it is to bare my soul and to realize how twisted up I have become in this, it brings about changes in my life... some of them harder to give up than others. This book is divided up in three sections: The Hiding, The Finding, and The Freedom of Being Found. While I could nod and agree with everything in the first section, I'm finding the rest of the book a little harder to get through... because it's where I have to give up what I've clung to for so long. 

Fortunately, I don't have to do it on my own. 

In this process, I'm discovering that the things that I believe God gave me as a way to honor Him, like being a wife and a mother and an artist, have become joyless so many times because I'm rushing through them and using them as a way to make myself "approved" of by others. They've lost some of their innate satisfaction. 

With that said, while I would never give up any of them, I am stepping away from designing for manufacturers for a while. I want to get back to the root of WHY I'm doing this. The heart of creativity. The joy of motherhood. The pleasure of being a wife. For me, those are all intrinsically connected. 

This will be my last month of designing for the amazing companies (Lily Bee Designs and Authentique) that have allowed me to be a part of their teams for some time. They both create inspiring products for paper crafters of all sorts to use, and they have my full support. I love seeing people succeed in this industry, especially as bigger and bigger companies get in the game... please support these guys. They've got passion behind what they're doing, and we need lots of that.

I don't pretend to think that most of you guys will care about all of what I've written, but I feel like to be authentically me on my blog, I needed to sort this all out and share it with the few of you who might read through this. It's a little bit scary and definitely not within my comfort zone, but this is also who I am. 

Oh, and for what it's worth, I will be continuing to work with sweet Noel at NoelMignon. That has always been a safe place and a home for me as a creative person... I believe my place is still there. It's a constant source of inspiration and challenge for me as a creative gal. 

Thank you all for your support and kind words.... I always enjoy reading your comments. :)




15 comments:

  1. Hey V! You are very brave soul to bare it all and share with us your decision making process. I admire you as a mother and creative gal! Thank you for the inspiration!!!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have goosebumps. How encouraging it was to read your post. I absolutely get it and admire you for how you've responded to your convictions/God's purpose for you at this time. Thanks for sharing. I recently had to say 'no' to a few things as well so that I could concentrate more on being a godly wife, mother, and woman. It was hard getting to that place because I'm a 'people pleaser' as well but life is so much sweeter. I hope you continue to find sweetness in life as you glorify God in what you do.

    ReplyDelete
  3. um...yeah...so I probably need to read that book! lol! (Is it bad that I'm afraid it'd make me give my DTs too though? just being honest.) I totally agree with the above comment in that I admire you for such honesty and even the courage to let go of things you love for the sake of devoting more time/energy to Shaun and the kids. And somehow I find myself wishing (again) that I lived closer. I know that the Lord would use your presence, dare I say wisdom, in my life even more than He already does. I love you, friend! I'm proud of you and proud to know you!

    ReplyDelete
  4. *hugs* Been there done that girl. I know it's hard, but I also know how freeing it is. God will bless you beyond all that you could ask or imagine for being willing to give up the here and now for the future good...and for giving up the good now for the better now. *hugs again* and hang in there!! We don't get as much approval for doing the wife/mother thing as we do for the other, but if you ever need a little extra approval or encouragement, you know where to come!!! lol

    ReplyDelete
  5. P.S. It's weird saying this since we've never ACTUALLY met, but...I'm proud of you!

    ReplyDelete
  6. That book has both stung my heart and given me more freedom than I did not think was possible. But the dark crevasses of my soul have become illuminated by admitting the simple truths of my self-righteousness. And it never hurts for too long because Christ is there holding me and revealing it to me the entire time. He's such a tender-loving God to my wild, unruly heart. Love you, Veezer. Always will. Thanks for being my friend and showing me your heart.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I give you a lot of credit for what you're doing. Most of us aren't willing to admit things like this...or to do something about it. I find that I have to remind myself not to let the 'other' stuff overshadow my family. It's hard sometimes. Thanks for the post :) I think I might have to read that book myself!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I think it's good that you found a way to focus on what is important for you right now!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Yes, it IS hard to fit it all in. I struggle with this just about everyday. I don't remember who said it but there's a quote that says, "Don't let the things that matter most be at the mercy of the things that matter least." Yes, it's fun to be on teams and to feel important and liked but what you are doing as a wife and mother is far more important. I think that we all need that reminder once in a while. The creative stuff/scrappy stuff is fun and we need an outlet as well but I think that sometimes we let it take over a little bit too much and we then find the need to back off. Like Deanna said, that can be really hard, but you are amazing and you will find the balance you're looking for and will come back better than ever. ♥

    ReplyDelete
  10. Oh Virginia!! I so get what you mean...and I don't even design for manufacturers (but I work a FT job) so I also struggle with being a mom, wife, employee etc...I feel like I'm always rushing and never living in the joy of any of those daily activities. I have been known to completely give up scrapbooking because of the time it takes away from my family...well, all that to say that I totally understand and I really LOVE those quotes you posted...I'm going to look into that book...it sounds like it would be a good one for me to read!!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi Virginia. I've never actually commented on your blog, but have been here before and have always enjoyed peeping out what you do. I must say God led me here today because I certainly need to get my hands on this book. Thank you for sharing a piece of your story here. It sounds oh so familiar. May you be blessed as you travel along your new journey.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thinking I might need to read that book as well. Good for you! It's refreshing to know I am not alone in my struggles to be "good". I am sorry you have to deal with it as well though. Good luck. I hope you feel a weight lifting.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Us girls at Authentique will miss you, so keep in touch!! Sending love your way!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. love this. I'm there with you - taking time to find the root of things is never time wasted. Sweet blessings to you...

    ReplyDelete

I'm so glad you decided to leave me a comment today! Thanks for taking the time to stop by my little corner of the world. :)

LinkWithin

Blog Widget by LinkWithin