Someone recently asked what I enjoy most about making jewelry.
For me, making jewelry is deeply satisfying on many levels, and I am grateful that there are people out there that like what I create. That appreciation perpetuates the creative process within me. It is something I am both continually shaping and shaped by. To me this feels like a wild gallop because often there is a specific intention or direction I want to go with a design, but I don’t want to control the process and make it all conform to that specific intention. That would just squeeze the life right out of it. It’s like holding the reins loosely but not letting go. I allow for exploration and discovery, both of the material with which I am working and of myself. Inevitably, the ‘finished product’ then becomes another point of departure for another wild ride, either further in that direction or off in another direction. I especially love making meaningful custom pieces for people (and pets!)… for the stories they hold, for their expressions of love, and for allowing me to be a tiny thread in the fabrics of their lives. And I have learned that while I am often making a special piece of jewelry for someone to give to someone else, the piece ends up being as much a gift for the giver as for the receiver. I am truly fascinated and touched by the sentimentality people associate with jewelry.
Which brings me to little Nolee, a ten year old girl who recently had a wild ride herself, except it wasn’t fun at all. On a family trip to Lake Powell, there was a boating accident that caused her to lose her right arm. Without going into all the gory details, I’m sure you can imagine how that happened. She is now home recuperating and adjusting to life without her arm. Nolee turns eleven on June 26th. And for her birthday I’ve made her a ‘Helping Hand’ necklace as a reminder that there are many who care for her wellbeing and are eager to help in any way they can. It is also intended to remind her that she is resilient and strong and, with time, will be able to do many things herself. I thought I’d see if any Cowboy’s Sweetheart fans wanted to contribute to a prosthetic fund for her. If so, please make checks out to Nolee and, to be respectful of the family’s privacy, send them to Cowboy’s Sweetheart P.O. Box 174 Ward, CO 80481…. And I will be sure she gets it.
Remember, “Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming ‘Wow! What a Ride!’”