Sometimes when I'm giving a presentation to a group, I make the statement, "I have been me for a long time."
By saying this, I am trying to encourage people to look back across their lives for signs of themselves. A collection you had as a child. A tradition that means a lot to you. A dream you once had.
I take pride in the fact that sometimes I overdo it when I am crafting. What is reasonable to me (because it made it so much cuter) can sometimes seem ridiculous or even not worth the effort in someone else's eyes.
That's okay. How people choose to spend their time varies greatly and that's what makes the world interesting. Back in the day, I thought it would be very cool to enter a contest by designing a bookmark in cross stitch.
What amuses me is that when I look this cross stitch bookmark that I designed when I was seventeen, I see myself plain as day. I've been overdoing it for a long time.
Look at the number of stitches...and half stitches! Look at the icon-studded "pattern" that I drew by hand and supplied so that others could make my bookmark too, if I won. Clearly I was out of my mind. But I was also very happy. I remember toting this bookmark around with me and stitching every spare chance I had. As the deadline approached (yes, I've been working right up to the deadline my whole life too), my Chemistry teacher let me cross stitch in class, while my dear friend Dana took notes.
I didn't win, but the experience was just as positive and just as "me" as if I had won. Thankfully the cross stitch magazine returned my bookmark and it's ridiculous pattern with a thanks for participating note, so that I can show it to you now.
I've kept it tucked away in the closet with my old cross stitch books. Now that I have it out, I am going to attach some adhesive felt across the back (to give it more stability and keep any threads from unravelling) and then I'm going to use it!
Twenty seven years later, my bookmark is going in a book! Have you been you for a very long time?