Whew! Well, that was fun. I mean, fun in a way that sharing your shortcomings with the world can be fun. If you’ve been reading along for the last month, thanks for checking in and being a part of this. Thanks for commenting, giving me feedback and relating your own stories of failure; connecting and swapping ideas with you on this theme was definitely the best thing that came out of the experiment.
Like this, for example. Remember when I compared myself to Anne Lueneburger? When I googled her, then observed my feelings as I scrolled through her site, I knew I had to share about it here. I ended up writing a note to Anne, feeling sheepish, but still wanting her to know that I featured her in my blog. She responded with this.
Other people who I hadn’t heard from in years also got in touch along the way. In emails, phone calls and conversations I was gifted with some of your most hilarious stories. Thank you.
I even got out of bringing baking to church after a friend read my blog and offered 2 dozen dainties in my place. Now that’s connection and generosity!
Though my inner pendulum naturally swings towards the positive (like relating the anecdotes above), it’s been intriguing to train myself towards the negative. When I started I assumed I would be immune to any “blue” feelings because of the blog. I was wrong. While I found it mostly entertaining, there were times when I felt extra self-conscious, extra vulnerable, and extra low while concentrating on all the things I do wrong.
My older children, on the other-hand, thoroughly enjoyed it. “So what’s your failure today, Mom?” they asked regularly. And, “I think you are definitely failing at so-and-so. Maybe you should write about it?” They jumped on the bandwagon and offered up a wealth of content for this series in a way that only 11 and 13-year-old children could.
Lastly, I failed at blogging about failure. I didn’t do it everyday like I thought I would, for one. But more importantly, I haven’t been completely honest. Had I not filtered my stories, these pieces would’ve read much differently. For the sake of my children and husband I didn’t publish my bigger, more real, failures. And for the sake of my readers I tried not to drivel on about constantly feeling inadequate when I write, even though that motivated me to begin this series in the first place. I wanted to know: How is failing part of making stuff? How do we define failure? When is failure “worth it”? But who wants to sound like a broken record? So I admit, I curated this series in order to save face, just as you knew all along.
Thank you for understanding. For your generosity and grace. For connection.
Ps. Success and Failure in Art is the theme of Wonderscape 2018. If you come across any books, articles or thoughts of your own on this topic, please let me know. I’d love to hear your suggestions!