When Risk Turns into Satisfaction

I’m a hands-on person. Always have been. Always will be. 

I used to not be this way until I developed anxiety in my mid 20s. I cannot sit still long enough to not do anything. I can only look at social media for so long before I get antsy. I always have to be doing something. It’s more of a coping mechanism for me to keep my anxiety at bay. I know there’s always something that needs to be done.

For years I always wanted to create home decor, mostly wooden signs and small furniture. I started getting into the hobby in 2018 after my divorce. It was an escape from reality, to create something with my own two hands instead of destroying it. It was very satisfying. However, the hobby was short-lived due to lack of funds, lack of equipment, and not taking the time to educate myself to improve my skills.

Do I miss it? Of course I do. I miss working with my hands. As crazy as it sounds, it’s very therapeutic for my anxiety. I regret not spending more time on it. However, life got in the way and I needed to focus on rebuilding what I had lost. Life won over my dreams as much as I hate to admit it.

Camper life isn’t an ideal place to do anything related to woodworking. There’s simply no room. It’s also very difficult to create something inside a camper with a 6 month old black lab. I could kennel him, but it’s not fair to him to be in a box while I work on my creativity. Luckily the weather has been nice enough for us to spend some time outside. We both need the sunshine and fresh air in our lives.

For the last few days, creativity was sinking in. I’m not sure if it’s because of boredom or I needed to do something other than apply for jobs, play with Tikka, and read a book. The creativity itch was getting worse as the days went on. I simply needed to do something with my hands other than typing, texting, and playing games on my phone.

Today, I decided to create my first floral arrangement. I always wanted to work with flowers, real and silk, ever since I was in college. I simply either didn’t have time nor the funds to do it. I also had this idea back in the day that creating my first arrangement was going to take off my floral career overnight (Nice try, 19-year-old Natalie. That’s not how things actually work. You HAVE to put in the work.). Looking back, I’m glad I didn’t get in over my head and take a leap because I was simply daydreamer, impatient, and didn’t want to educate myself to do better. 

While I was out and about today, I stopped and picked up the materials from Hobby Lobby in Elizabeth City. I was very conscious of what to get and didn’t buy the things I didn’t need (I may need them down the road, but not right now). After getting all the materials, I returned to the camper and carefully thought about my vision. I could see what I wanted, but I was questioning how I was going to do it. The secret ingredient: be patient and take your time. 

Today was a beautiful day to take Tikka and this project outside. There’s plenty of space and things for Tikka to chew on.  As I begin cutting the dry foam and fitting it properly in the box, I begin to tell myself the infamous words from Pro Archer, Levi Morgan, “Trust the process.” I focused on one area at a time as I was reminding myself over and over to believe in myself. It’s my first time taking a risk. If it doesn’t work out, then walk away and reflect on what happened.

One hour later, I was finished with my little project. That risk turned into satisfaction. I was pleased with the result. The picture I had in my head actually came to life. No Pinterest nor Youtube needed for my vision. I was proud of the final result, regardless of what others may think. I sent a picture of the final product to Josh, family, and friends to show I was being productive at the campground. All of them approved the first arrangement.

Not too shabby.

Is this something I may pursue? It caught my attention, especially when I didn’t make a carbon copy of something from the internet. The image shaped itself as I scanned through the materials. Is it completely original? Probably not. I’m sure there is something very similar to this out there. However, I want to continue taking these risks and turning them into satisfaction.

Stay adventurous,

Natalie Paige 

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