I recently had a large glaze kiln going. It was a full kiln and I had many of my very time consuming pots inside. Large platters, watering cans, pitchers, mugs, all of these items take a long time to make and to dry. The anticipation to see them completed was high.
My daughter, Delila, who just turned four was in my studio with me while I was unloading this kiln. I just wanted to unload it quickly as I could not wait any longer to see my final product. Heartbreak....that was what I was experiencing, total and utter heartbreak as I unloaded. Two of my three pitchers had cracked and three of my mugs had the glaze run off the bottom and were ruined. Among all of this my ever chatty Delila just kept on gabbing away. I just needed a minute! Seriously, just like 10 seconds of quiet so I could gather myself. I was on the edge of loosing it.
I went to Delila and tried as nicely as a mom can to tell her child to go away. "Delila honey, mommy is really stressed right now because some of my pots are cracked and ruined. Please just give me some space honey, I am very frustrated and need some alone time." She clearly has no clue what alone time is. Seriously, she thinks privacy is her coming into the bathroom with me but closing the door.
Then in her sweet little voice, "But mommy look at how beautiful everything else looks! The ones that cracked you can just make again. Look at how many beautiful pots you made!"
She was right. I had three mugs and two pitchers ruined but I had eight mugs that turned out beautifully. Two watering cans that were just exquisite. A gorgeous large platter, a three piece canister set I was super happy with, some nice flat bowls, and I still had one great pitcher. I looked at the 10% that didn't turn out and felt utter failure. All I could see was what could have been but wasn't. What about the other 90% that was, how did 10% of bad cancel out 90% of great? I saw only the failure and my daughter saw only the great. She only saw the victory.
Now as we all know feelings and logic don't always align. I knew Delila was right and I knew this is how I should feel. But I didn't, I still felt disappointed but I could not shake how she saw it. I worked on seeing it her way not letting small failures cloud my vision of the many victories. Her words and how she saw things warmed my heart. Everyday, in every situation, I now try to see things better, I try to be more like my daughter and see the victories. Just like myself as a person, it is a work in progress but I think I can get there and I want to. I want to see the world how my daughter does, see things thru her eyes because the view is so much sweeter.
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Off Your Rocker Pottery