"A stitch in time saves nine."
That phrase was taught to me to remind me to fix small tears before they become large holes. I hope I have decided to come back to DDOF in time to keep riding the building wave we were on. Maybe I have chosen to return quickly enough. I took some time away, though not as much as I originally thought I would. I made what I thought was a certain and clean break. I posted a note on my facebook page to inform my fans and customers. I cancelled my commitment to a couple of events. I thought I had done all I needed to do to stop being the Dolly Mama.
I forgot something, though. I never covered my sewing machine. There she sat (yes, my machine is a girl though her front is emblazoned "Brother") quiet and contemplative. Each time I walked by, she grabbed my attention. Did she move? No. Speak? No. But somehow, she called out to remind me of possibilities. I started noticing an emptiness that opens up when there are no pricked fingers, no piles of thread ends, no stray thimble found here and there because it stowed away in a pocket. But, I wasn't the only one she whispered to.
The funny thing about this little vacation was so that I could create more for and with my daughter. We spent crafty time with a number of materials. We have played with clay, made paper, painted, colored, drawn together, and spent time cooking. But she turned to me, one day after seeing the machine on the table, with a serene yet contemplative face that stops all the world from turning and kind of takes my breath away, and asked me why I don't make dolls anymore. Mind you, I had only stopped for a short while at this point. I told her it was so that we could spend more time making things for each other. She thought for only a second before she said, "But, Mommy, people really like your dolls. They make people happy. You should make them some more." We talked about it a bit more and I saw that she didn't simply like to receive my dolly creations, she enjoyed watching me create them. She likes to tell others what I do. I had thought that working in the studio a great deal was taking me away from her. I was wrong. It was giving her something. I can't quite define what my work means to her, but she is excited to know that I will be back at the sewing table again.
So, I have dusted off my machine, apologized to her for the abandonment, re threaded and inserted a full bobbin, and placed my scissors close. Dolly plans are in the works, sketches on the table, and cloth waiting to be cut. I wonder if my kiddo will ever know how expertly she has wrapped me around her finger and how quickly her small voice can stop me in my tracks or spur me on my way.