Thursday, April 13, 2017

Identity


Even for an introvert, I have a really long runway. I'm beginning to think that I might have benefitted from spending more time between living at home and getting married, precious solitude in which to do some inner excavation. I did spend 4 months alone, working in NYC, and that time profoundly impacted me - but I didn't have enough space to process most of it, so there have been a lot of ideas just sitting around in storage waiting for me to have time to unpack them.

One of them was a sermon on work and creativity, and the pastor speculated about the application of those two things in Heaven. He invited us to imagine having infinite time and a perfect body - to create, for example, a sand mandala using tiny flecks of crushed gems, carefully placing each grain exactly where we wanted it in the circular tray, then taking it to God - to envision His response, the proud parent who sees Himself reflected in His child - and then to pour it out at His feet, an offering, because nothing could ever be as beautiful as Him.

That has captivated me ever since - when I think about it, I start to cry, because it's just so beautiful, and so appealing. But recently it occurred to me that I don't have to wait. I was given the opportunity to speak (twice) on identity, specifically finding ones identity in ones work. So to illustrate my point - and to make it more than just high words, because I'm good at that, in a bad way - I designed a top, made from a continuous thread, wore it, then took it off and unraveled it partway through the talk.


It was a sacrifice. The best of the ability I've been given, and finite and precious time, reverted back to a ball of yarn in a matter of moments. Twice. It hurt, but that was kind of the point. I love knitting, but I can't rely too much on other's responses to my knitting (ironically, some of my favorite designs have also been my least popular, thereby forcing me to reexamine whether I actually loved it or thought other people would). It's a gift - and gifts are meant to be given.

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