It's snowing. I'm waiting to see if it starts sticking badly, because then I'm booking for home. The Miata don't do hills in the snow.
So I was thinking more about getting older, and doing things, and making things, and where I am going (aside from downhill, natch). I think I would be happy if I was left alone to create - for me, it's not about fame, fortune, and massive cash rewards (good damn thing, eh?), but about the creative need. I'm not doing this for the oohs and aahs (though I cannot deny that I like them), but because pushing the envelope is what keeps me happy.
It's also a good damn thing I'm not doing this for the SCA cookies - most of what I'm known for now happened after I got my Laurel (I got it for a combination of illumination and musical composition - the last thing I'd have been considered for would have been costuming). :)
I like trying to find completely new ideas, and pushing the limits of what I can do - Embroidered jacket? Check. Appliqued doublet? Check. New coif theory? Check. What's next? - but I'm not a "do it once, then I'm bored" kind of person; I want to perfect what I'm doing, and not only make what hasn't been made, but do it well. Simply slapping something out just so I can say I've done it doesn't work for me.
The creative process is as close to God as I'm ever going to get. The understanding of the intricacies of any given project raise me to another level of consciousness, and it gives me goosebumps. At its best, it makes me want to yell and dance around. It's not just about making something new, it's about achieving the high of creation.
Because I progress slowly (each big project now takes me a year or more to completion), I have less problem with burnout (boredom is a different animal - we all get bored every now and then), and I have learned to let go of the desire to have something new and impressive every time I go to an event. It simply can't be done; I can do it right, or I can do it fast, but the two do not intersect.
I'm also not jealous of the beautiful things that other people create - hey, I get to look at those beautiful things, and it's a huge improvement over some of the crap things I used to see! The way I see it, the more people make beautiful things, the more other people will see them and want to copy them. If only one person makes something gorgeous, then people will say "I could never do that!", but if ten people make ten gorgeous things, then it seems more attainable. In that way, we make our surroundings more lovely, and encourage others to do the same.
One thing growing older has given me is patience. One would think I'd feel the opposite - I'm running out of time! Eeek! - but when you're young, time seems like an eternity, and everything needs to be done now - next month is too long to wait. When you're older, time moves by faster - hey, where'd the last two years go? - and finishing something next year (or three years, in the case of the appliqued doublet) doesn't seem like such a big deal. There will still be plenty of time to use the article once it's done.
So, when I project about 5 years for the bed cover, I'm not moaning and groaning in my head, I'm thinking about how cool it will be to have a really hand-done bed cover in a period pattern that isn't four times too big, like the modern patterns. I'm also thinking how cool it would be to have an entire bed set, with curtains, linen sheets, a feather bed and bolster, and a beautiful period wooden bed frame to display it. I'm thinking of an article about it for my web site, and what I can use from it for my research for Jamestown.
I'm also thinking how much fun the next five years will be, happily creating something new and beautiful. And I am grateful that I didn't peak early - there's still so much to look forward to.