It’s about 3:00 A.M.

I’m sitting at my desk, listening to music, wide awake for the first time in about 24 hours. I’m also weaving on my pin loom—designing and testing patterns, writing notes. And I’m wondering silly things.

A beautiful mess or beautiful order?

Would I rather be Tchaikovsky, the composer, or Heifetz, the violinist? Bring the music to life or write it in the first place?

I suspect neither Tchaikovsky nor Heifetz had an easy life. While I appreciate the many wonderful, wonderful contributions Russia has provided the world, I would not like to be Russian. And I wouldn’t want to spend my life practicing the violin—though, if I were so inclined it would be marvelous to play so sublimely as Heifetz.

Instead, I am a woman, getting on in years, who can’t sleep at night. Born and raised in the USA, and grateful for it. Many years and many dollars have gone into my personal development as a dancer, painter, writer, and lately a fiber artist. Sometimes I mourn the passing of my ability to dance, the desired but never realized dream of being an accomplished painter, the close but-oh-so-far-away dream of being a writer.

Night after night I sit in my office studio designing and weaving, often picking out row upon row so I can get the desired (and sometimes envisioned) effect. Knotty challenges arise, “Can I do this with the warp and weft?” and I don’t give up. I’m patient and unwearied. I explore and experiment and…

Most of the time I succeed. I’m really, really good at what I do. (I admit this with a look of disbelief on my face.)

They say it takes 1000 (or is it 10,000?) hours of effort before you can achieve greatness (or personal satisfaction). In the more than 35,000 hours since I started pin loom weaving I might have spent 17,000 of them weaving and designing. (Well, maybe not quite that much, but maybe yes, that many or more.)

Tchaikovsky or Heifetz? If I had the choice, I’d pick neither. I can enjoy their greatness while developing my own.

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