I spent much of last week getting the house ready for the holidays. I’m not an over-the-top type when it comes to Christmas decorating, but a friend asked if we would be on the Health Share Holiday House Tour this year, and it’s such a worthy cause that I couldn’t say no. But when people pay actual money to see them, your decorations have to be extra.
So, I enlisted several trusted friends to help me hose down the mantles with greenery and hang a power of garland and ribbons and wreaths - oh my. Amazing women. Even my guys were great, hauling boxes to the dump, sweeping, and shoving stuff into drawers and closets. Heaven forbid there be evidence that anyone actually live in the house let alone consume food or brush her teeth.
By Sunday, everything was fine, but there in the thick of it, I was not so sure. It was hard to see past the ladders in every room, the spools of ribbon and bits of greenery. It's the in-process mess. Because as we all know, no matter how hard you try to stay on top of it, creativity is messy business.
Even with a tidy creative art like knitting, we know that sometimes our yarn gets tangled in our bag. Those in-process pieces, with their loose ends and curled edges are very messy -- makes us wonder how all that will ever be a sweater. It’s especially overwhelming for newer knitters who wonder, “Is this really going to turn into something? Will it fit me? The pieces look so small.” I get it. Even if you’re working in the round, there are sleeves to be picked up, collars to be worked, and plenty of loose ends to be woven in.
When you’re in the thick of things, it can look like a hopeless mess, but you stay on it. Step by step you put things in order, and it all comes together beautifully. I know it’s easier said than done, but don’t let the in-process mess cloud your judgement or kill your confidence. Whatever creative process you’ve undertaken - from knitting, to raising a child -- remember that those messy pieces will all come together, and it will be amazing.
I look forward to seeing you in the shop and around the table. You, and any messy bits you are working on, are always welcome here.