The last decade has involved quite a bit of figuring out who I am now. Any time we have a big loss in our lives we eventually come to this point: who am I now that my children are no longer at home, who am I now that I no longer work in my previous occupation, who am I now that now that I will not have my own biological children? The list is endless.
The evolution of who I am today even after being widowed has had its twists and turns. Leaving a corporate job that no longer fit. Remarriage and figuring out the role of bonus mom. My children growing up and leaving home to live their own lives. Even my pottery avocation has shifted and evolved into a bigger part of my vocation.
I’ve talked about vocation some before. These days I still lead the widow social support group but we’ve added a co-leader so it’s not all on me. I spend more time in the pottery studio than out of it (when there’s not a pandemic, that is). I’m finding a new balance and a new me. There is an equilibrium that, if you’d asked me 10 years ago, I would have told you I would likely never experience again.
So how did I find that equilibrium? Interesting question to consider. There was no one technique that did the trick. I’ve had some great coaches and mentors. There has been some natural evolution in my work life (nothing is constant but change, as they say.) I’ve done values surveys to try to figure out what I want to do and be in life. Practicing the tools of The Creative Grief Studio with grief support professionals continues to be revelatory and educational for me, not just the students. Early on, I read every grief book I could get my hands on and while I read one on occasion still, the need has lessened. What it boils down to the most, for me, has been exploration. In my corporate days, if we designed a new process that we weren’t sure was going to work, we would pilot it. Give something new a try, see if it works, and if not move on from it carrying what you learned forward.
We humans want a process, don’t we? But as with much in grief and life there is not just one way.
So where I am today is spending more time and effort on the art aspect of my work. In the column to the left, you will see a new link to an Art Shop. That is where I’ll be showcasing the pottery that I have to offer and I will continue to sell Ken’s fine art prints. Representing this part of the work is aligned with who I am today. Until change comes again.