Healing Hands, Healing Heart

Sometimes someone will email me and ask if I will make them a specific pillow or wall hanging or quilt.  I always get a little uneasy at such a request, because I’m not always good as saying no.  Although by now I have enough experience to know that if I’m trying to make something that I don’t want to, I won’t enjoy doing it and I won’t do a good job.

If I don’t know right away if I want to do it or not, I usually don’t answer right immediately .   I give myself time to think about it,  sometimes a whole day.   Then I see how I feel when I do think about it.  If I get an ugh kinda feeling in my stomach when it comes to mind, I know not to do it.  If it’s not an ugh, I do it.  This doesn’t mean that if I say no to a request, that I think it’s an awful idea, it just means I’m not the right person to do it.  I have my line and sometimes I’ve done a balancing act on it, a few times I’ve stepped over it.  I like to believe that I’ve learned from those times.

One that comes to mind has to do with a piece of dog fabric and a potholder.  Someone gave me a bunch of fabric with dogs on it.  Some of it I enthusiastically used and some of it sat on my shelf.  It was just ugly.  I don’t remember how I got to this point, but one day I found myself at my desk piecing together a potholder and using this ugly dog fabric, just because it was dog fabric and I had it.  I remember struggling with it, then finally throwing something together.  I only made one, and put it in a pile of other potholders that were going in a show.  When it sold, I was a bit embarrassed and glad that it was gone.  I told myself that I would never do that again. I still cringe when I think about it.  It’s not so much about the potholder itself, I’m sure whoever bought it, likes it (I hope).  It’s more about me feeling like I wasn’t being honest, I wasn’t being authentic.  My work is a piece of me going out into the world, if I’m not true to my work I’m not being true to me.

Above is a commissioned piece that I didn’t even have to think about.  When I read the email from Anita, I immediately knew I wanted to do it.  I understood and loved everything about it.  It is so close to what I am already doing, I almost could have come up with the idea.  Even with all that, it was still a challenge.  The pillow has more words that images and most of the words aren’t mine.  But I decided to see the words as pictures and fit them all into the design.

It’s a little different for me, and I had my doubts yesterday when I left the studio.  But today I could see that it worked.  And I’m glad to say I think the beautiful words will always  stay with me and happy to share them with you.

“Just for today, I will not be angry
Just for today, I will not worry
Just for today, I will be grateful
Just for today I will do my work honestly
Just for today, I will be kind to every living thing”

Reiki mantra by Mikao Usui

11 thoughts on “Healing Hands, Healing Heart

  1. I really like the reiki mantra at the end. Gonna print this out and put it by my computer at work.


  2. This is just beautiful Maria. I love the fabric on the corners of the border. The verse is lovely. One we could think about every day. You’ve made a stunning creation out of these words.
    The ugly dog fabric tale gave me a chuckle.Thanks for that.
    You are a great writer!!

  3. A beautiful and honest post. Being true to oneself is a happy place to be. I started Reiki after my divorce and am now a Reiki Master. I do most of my Reiki work with animals and pets. I loved getting to the part of your post that spoke of the Reiki mantra. Sometimes in the darkest days of my divorce and picking myself back up those words kept me going. The pillow is stunning. I love the colors.

  4. Isn’t it nice when something resonates, and you feel good about it? I’m sure your intended customer is thrilled with her beautiful new pillow. I love it!

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