I had the opportunity to attend a special sewing class last night with many of my quilting friends. A teacher was in town for another class and offered to put together kits to make a wool pumpkin pin cushion. Yes, please!
So this is me getting over my compulsion to assign a purpose to everything. Such as, I'll only spend time and money making a quilt because it's for a gift. Or, I'm only taking this class because I'm learning a new skill that will improve my technique.
I have one friend in particular that has been unknowingly helping to liberate me. She taught me tatting. I mean, tell me, who NEEDS the product of tatting? Who needs 12 inches handmade lace made of knots and loops that took a week to make? But it's beautiful and you can finally use the hand-dyed thread you made yourself (that has also been languishing without purpose)! This friend is also a master of freehand embroidery. A couple of years ago she was working on.... something - maybe we'd call it a doodle cloth - couching down amazing fibers, attaching metal keys and zipper parts, applying appliqué. It was beautiful! Scrumptious and soft and buttery yellow with bursts of color trailing across the surface. I asked her, "What is that for?" She said, "I don't know."
What she really didn't know was how her answer stopped my brain in its tracks. I was thinking, 'How can you not know?' How can you work on something *without a purpose*? Because if I am not being a mother to my children or entertaining my husband or working at my job or doing something that will benefit others, then what is the *purpose* of that activity?
I have passed up so many opportunities to engage because I would think, 'How many craft items can I frame and hang on a wall anyway?' or 'How many things do I just need to move around to dust?' or 'I already know how to sew and stuff a pillow, why do I need to pay to take that class?'
I'm learning new answers to those questions that include, 'because it's pretty' and 'because it brings me joy.'