I did it. I finally emailed some stores I have relationship with to offer my work. I have had such a mental block about this for the last year. I keep thinking I need to have 10 incredible pieces, a quantity of 5 each, a professionally photographed and designed look book and line sheet. And I just. can't. get there while making artwork and having a super limited amount of work hours. So, I just impulsively emailed a plain-'ol-plain-text-email to just a couple places that already know me with a link to a dropbox folder of current work, and it feels like I just untangled myself from a bunch of heavy, wet weeds.
When I had my first child I could not wrap my head around how to leave him. Like, at all. It seemed like even 2 hours away from him would be impossible. I couldn't wrap my postpartum brain around how to leave and make sure he didn't starve. With my second child, an angel in the form of a women's therapist told me, "Why don't you just have some formula in the house in case it's needed so you don't feel so much pressure while you're gone?" I know that sounds insanely simple but somehow I just couldn't think of that myself. My second child had a bottle of formula maybe like 6 or 8 times and that slight shift was a massive change in my quality of life. My first child? Not a drop of formula has ever touched his mouth, but mommy was crazy. And now, with my 3rd almost 2 years old, I legit can't remember what we did to feed her when I was gone. I have no recollection of whether we were giving her formula or not. It's not a story I was so emotionally tangled up in and paralyzed by that it stuck in my memory.
Sometimes we can be so idealist, so purist, so annoyingly overachieving in areas that matter to us, that we're completely blind to alternative steps that will get us to the end goal in a more healthy (and ultimately more satisfying) way. I don't know about you, but I can get so caught up in the things that are hard for me, the hurdles I can't figure out, the things I thought I could do but can't, that I miss the path around them.
So, yes. There are other people with great look books and line sheets, photography and paychecks, resumes and bodies and houses that are more ideal than my own. But all of that comparison is totally meaningless to me if I still get what I really want. And what I want is to be able to make a living selling stuff I make with my own hands, creating my own schedule, and enjoying it all along the way. Someday I'll make a look book because it makes sense and because I want to. But for now, praise Google and Dropbox, I'm taking the path that keeps me moving. If you find yourself stuck standing in front of a hurdle you can't get over, I hope you find your way around it too.