My Grand Un-Opening: Intentionally Not Selling Art

When I was in college, I worked in an art supply store.
I hated it.
I hated it so much. But that’s not what I want to talk about at ALL. (HAHA)

What I want to talk about is… I had this wonderful co-worker at the art supply store,
who told me a teeeeny tiny anecdote.
And for some reason it stuck in my head, for nine years. Ready?

She told me that when she washed dishes,
she did a great job, butย she always left one dirty dish in the sink.
Like, she just couldn’t bring herself to truly FINISH the job.

And for some reason, it always stuck with me.. (probably because I’m a Type-A person, so it was IMPOSSIBLE for me imagine leaving ONE dish in the sink! How could she… how could she sleep at night?!)

Haha, well anyways I remembered her story, and fast forward 9 years:
I’m currently a toddler-Mom with a half-assed Etsy shop and a broken dishwasher, LOL.
Seriously though, my dishwasher is broken.

So I’ve been hand-washing piles of dishes for a month,
and seizing the opportunity to let my mind wander… about my life.. my priorities.. what I really want to spend my time on.

I think I’ve realized that, more than ever, I do want to grow our family.
I do want to get to a place, emotionally, where I can consider going through pregnancy again.
And I want that MORE than I want to be an artist.

Huzzah!
Finally, I’ve arrived!
At genuinely wanting what I wanted to want!

(If you’re still with me at this point, you’re a doll. Thank you.)

So anyways, here’s me: quietly washing dishes these past weeks,
reflecting on my friend’s little anecdote, and wondering…
What is my “one dish” in my life?
What do I do half-heartedly?
What can I not bring myself to complete?

And idk, somehow I finally had an “aha” moment, standing over the kitchen sink…

My shop was the one dish in the sink.

Yep, I f i n a l l y get where my co-worker was coming from.

Since becoming a Mom, I’ve been bumbling through my art, feeling like I’m never doing “enough”…
trying to find my balance of creative work + motherhood…
(but also wishing I could just BE CONTENT to have more babies and knit for fun and work on FibreShare, which are my true passions)
and I realized…
my shop is holding me back!!

I mean, my sales were few and far between.
But even so, it was a LOT of work to get everything designed, produced, photographed, listed, marketed…
And all those little tasks piled up and I’d avoid them.
But even so:

My shop was always on the back of my mind… like something I *could* be working on.
My shop was eating up naptimes that could have been spent drawing sweet portraits of my family.
My shop was distracting me from blogging about things that help me process Motherhood.
My shop was taking away from time I could be sketching for FibreShare.
My shop was just not serving me anymore.
And most importantly: it caused me this level of subconscious stress that served as a reminder: you’re not ENOUGH.

But I AM enough, dammit!
Whether I sell art or not, my true joys are giving and caring, and it’s ok to focus on that!

So I made a big decision: I CLOSED UP SHOP!

I’m so excited!
I am finally CHOOSING to give my time and talents to the ones I love.
I can draw and knit and write and bake for my family and friends, for the FibreShare community, for myself…
All it took was for me to really reflect and realize that my shop was not serving me financially or emotionally.
(Never did I ever think I’d be thankful for a broken dishwasher, LOL!)

SO, anyways, I’m gonna practice what I preach,
and instead of rambling away on my blog at 8:25 PM on a Friday night…
I’m going to give my time to my husband.

We’re gonna drink lavender tea and watch antiques roadshow until we fall asleep.
(…like every other 28 year old couple in the Midwest, duh.)

And when I wake up tomorrow, it’ll be a NEW ERA for Beth!
I’m excited to draw MORE often,
without the self-expectation of sales,
FOREVER!
(Maybe. Haha)

And hey, if you supported my shop(s) over the years, thank you!!!

Wishing you all a beautiful weekend,
free from distraction,
and filled with love.
-Beth

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  • This is great! I think itโ€˜s such a good reminder that if we have the possibility to just do where our true passion is, we just have to go for it. Happy to hear that ypu found out what you need and what ypu donโ€˜t need in your life.