June 14, 2010
The word destiny has always held a special meaning for me, well not always but for quite awhile. It is not because very time the word destiny is thrown out there I think of the "Luke it is your destiny" speech from Darth Vader, andmy daughter does do a mean imitation that I may have to post on YouTube some day. I crack up, just like no one can say the word Dingo without me shouting, "Maybe the dingo ate your baby!" in a very bad Australian accent, anyway I am getting off topic....back to my Destiny. It has to do with my life, which just like everyone else's lives revolves around choices we made, and choices that were made for us.
I think that sometimes things happen for a reason, and other times life just knocks you down...way down. Destiny is a strange word that is thrown around for parts of our lives, yet not others. No one would ever say, "You are going to pay taxes and then die.....it is your DESTINY!" It is only used in very deep, esoteric, special situations, times that you have achieved a huge success. Hell, when my parents neighbor met Grant for the first time she made a prediction that I am pretty sure was NOT his destiny. Upon hearing his name (Grant Risdon Lentzner) she announced his name was very dignified and he sounded like a president of the United States...ya, okay.
Wikipedia's definition of Destiny: Destiny may be seen either as a fixed sequence of events that is inevitable and unchangeable, or that individuals choose their own destiny by choosing different paths throughout their lives.
The main reason that I believed in Destiny was how I met my husband. I did not think it was just a number of very strange and fortunate events that lead me to him, I decided it was destiny (I will save that for another post this post is not about that destiny). So, in my personal life I say yes to Destiny, in my professional life I am not so sure. As my business gets older, and as I get (hopefully) wiser I find myself asking these questions quite frequently:
Was I Destined to start Jamie's Painting & Design?
Me sort of thinks that yes, I was destined to own a business. I was that little girl on the corner selling lemonade to neighbors and passing cars. Or, if memory serves me correct I would also run out into the street and
scream ask if anyone wanted to purchase lemonade. I tried to start a carnival and sell tickets. I sold every single one of my Barbie dolls at a now infamous Garage Sale (including my Grandmother's sacred original and very expensive Barbie dolls too).
Right after high school I started a jewelry business, not sure if you would call it a business or just that I sold my jewelry at craft shows and in many boutiques and hair salons. Earrings by Jamie lasted for about three years in the late eighties and early nineties. I closed it down in 1992 when I decided the whole grunge look was cool, with silver jewelry, baggy jeans and flannels. I was probably at the time my best customer - I wore those earrings everywhere. Bright fluorescent tank tops, biker shorts, big belts andthan the big earrings with rhinestones and glitter...not so much.
I was not that bad at the business part, I had some big clients, I picked up stores up and down the Peninsula. The feather in my cap was that my earrings were sold at a store in a local Mall that also did the Spin Art t-shirts. It's a generation thing with art splattered around, if you do not know what Spin Art is....I pity you.
I don't know about baby gifts, but creating cartoon like characters, yes I was destined to do that. I do it well. And, since cartoons are usually for children, okay then would say I probably was meant to do this. I am of he school of thought that we should do what we do well....if you enjoy it of course. I happen to enjoy it. I also love decorating, nesting, painting nurseries, shopping - so designing baby gifts is sort of a no brainer for me. Again, I follow the trends, know the popular colors, popular designers, styles, looks - I enjoy it, so maybe this is my destiny.
Is this it?
This question is the hardest one to answer for me. The truth is I don't know if it is. I don't know if this what I want to do forever. I just am not sure. Some days I do, other days I don't. I am not positive that this owning a business and sacrificing so much is worth it.
The last couple of years have been trying on me, my family and my employees. I don't even need to go into it, as I have it well documented on this blog. I have had ups and downs, tears and laughter, stress and.....okay lots of stress. The stress has been the worst part about running a business, not debating that here.
The one good thing about the down and out, the lean years we have had is I have time to look at what I do and my life and really figure out if I want to do it. I am lucky that I do not have 50 employees, an expensive mortgage, a family to support and an entourage..oh wait that entourage thing might be cool. What I mean is, I do this because I love it, or I did love it. I do it for the sheer joy of creating and the fact that other people purchase my products, lots and lots of people - that is pretty damn cool too.
In eight short months my lease is up here at Jamie's Painting & Design. In eight short months I will figure it out. Are we going to go on or pack up and close. I often ask myself if I really could walk away, could I just end this? The truth is I just don't know. I do know life is short, life is precious and it is my life. If this is my Destiny then so be it, but maybe this is not my destiny. Maybe this will just be a blip in my life, maybe this won't even be mentioned at my funeral. Maybe I am going to do bigger things. Only time will tell if this was my Destiny.