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Taking a Stab at...Excruciating

When people ask me if it hurts when I stab myself with a felting

needle, the first thing I want to say is..."What do you think, Einstein?" But I don't...because people think I'm nice and I hate to disappoint them.

Yes. It does hurt.

But as my experience with needle felting continues, I

have learned a little bit about why it hurts.

Of course, there is the initial pain that comes when skin is pierced by sharp metal. That comes and goes quickly though.

Am I bleeding? Is there blood on my project? That hurts too. The pain of worry.

Ugh! I can't believe I stabbed myself! Ouch! The pain of

realizing you just did something dumb that you shouldn't have.

But none of this is as excruciating... as the pain of putting yourself out there on a website or on social media with something you have made and want folks to pay money for.

I retire at the end of this school year and it occurred to me around the holidays that this was an opportunity to really explore what I could do with this wooly love of mine. I had sold a few pieces on my Etsy shop, and friends and family seemed to love the little doo-dads I had

made for them. Why not go for it with a name change, a website and a real try at social media?

Excruciating. Everything I did in the last couple of months was an exercise in negotiating with my inner critic when she said things like, "What makes you think people will want to buy that?" "You're charging how much?" "What, you want to be an influencer now?" Ugh! The pain!

I've learned over the years (thanks therapy!) that when feelings and voices like this come, I need to welcome them and make friends. I say, "oh, hi...I see you there...Thanks for trying to protect me. I get it-you're scared. But I'm just trying something-just having fun. But if it goes wrong, I'll call you." And she says, "Hmmm...I'm not so sure about that...but ok."

I rarely stab myself these days. I've learned the ways to avoid the pointy, barbed needle but it still happens from time to time. The mental, emotional stabs will happen too. It isn't too late to to learn ways make them less painful!

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