I think I have finally figured out what the heck is going on around here..
I’ve been having a really hard time getting this thing off the ground. Giving it wings. Making this pig actually FLY. Launching the website.. Thanks to an epiphany that woke me up around 3:30 AM this morning, I've just realized that it might be because I've been over complicating it.
I’ve been reworking and reworking everything trying to make it, “ready enough”. From the concept, to font selections, to this very introduction. (This is like draft 8, people.) Perfection is so far from what I am needing to do here! Praise cheesus I finally remembered that.
The thought has crossed my mind that maybe I’ve had some sort of a mental break. Epiphany VS. Insanity. (Cool 90’s band name, bro!) What if I’ve snapped due to the exhaustion from work and stress and now I’ve lost the capacity to discern the difference between being satisfied with my work as it is and/or it actually being ready. What if I’m phoning it in ‘cause, “screw it”.
Maybe I’m just ready for this thing to be a THING. Maybe this is the exact moment on earth and in time that I am supposed to be and it’s really go time. I bet it’s actually just something that has finally sunk in from listening to all these gross inspirational books on tape while I edit.
Trying to figure out if my new found courage to “let it all hang out” is legitimately a good idea, is exhausting in and of itself..
Maybe I am finally accepting the chaos?
Maybe I’m evolving??
Maybe you need a chill pill, Mom..
No matter the source of my revelation, it is still the gospel truth. I, have totally been over complicating it, I’m gonna’ cut it out, and the only way to get anywhere, is to start walking. Amen!
PFS was named in 2013. I say “named” because, “Pigs Fly Shop”, was originally essentially just a label that I needed to assign to all of these different things that I wanted to create or already had. So that the mess felt a little more organized. It is an umbrella, if you will.
Over the years it became an Etsy shop, then a freelance graphic design company, a tooled leather and vintage brand, one time it was a fake publishing company. It's an alias, a signature. It has been been whatever I have needed it to be.
That'll do, pig. That’ll do.
At my core, I believe that I was born to be an artist. Since I was a child, I feel that I have always been able to express myself through creating something. Anything. The process always fulfilling. The release, always healing.
Eventually when I got older, I learned to use the skills that I loved to find creative ways to be able to support myself and my family. That accomplishment is always fulfilling, and the security.. incredibly healing.
Enter Pigs Fly Shop. The aggregate of my ideas. MY company. The key to organizing and expressing my passions, working for myself, and being a stay at home Mom. The simplicity of the concept is lovely. It is what I wanted at inception, it is my end goal today.
What I wouldn’t give for that to be the moral of the story.. Creativity, goals, hard work, organization! Stir it all around, let it rise, slap a label on it, and POOF! You’ve got my secret recipe for success, and everyone’s bellies are full!
Oh, how I wish this was a blog about gluing stuff to other stuff, linked to a Pinterest page, linked to a best selling lifestyle style book about being #blessed enough to have never encountered lemons, while simultaneously including a recipe for, “The World's Best Lemonade!” that I wrote between PTO meetings and ending world hunger. -But that ain't how the world works.
I don’t care what science says, lemons do grow in Oklahoma.
Another thing that happens while we are trying to get older & wiser.. Is every other crappy, unimaginable, uninspiring, grossly traumatic, bull-crap, crappy, hateful, stupid frigging thing that our gloriously naive little brains could never have dreamed of.
Sometimes if we're lucky, the crap only happens in our general proximity and we make it out relatively unchanged. Maybe just a cool flesh wound and a story about our, “strength through adversity”. But majority of the crappy, stupid, bull-crap time we wind up losing limbs. Or our hope. Passion.. Usually faith. Sometimes our purpose.
I think young inspired Ali truly believed that life would be easy, and that she was invincible. That the world was her big expensive museum mounted canvas included in cost of tuition, and it felt like it was free.
I wish I could go back and prepare her for how hard life was actually going to be. To make her understand that while she was gulping down life by the fish bowl, a tab was running. And now someone needs to get paid. Also, the top shelf wisdom she thought she was imbibing, was in fact the swill. It all starts to taste the same if you don’t pace yourself.
I want to arm her against getting her legs and principles blown off by crappy circumstances. To teach her the importance of mastering metaphorical, and emotional, and physical tools. And I wish I could tell the young relatively uncomplicated and embarrassingly over-inspired little me, in a language that I would have understood.. “Hey. Someone’s gotta’ pay for that.”
In ways that I will get into through-out the course of this blog, lately I have been feeling an urgent necessity to sort out the messes that “Young Ali” made. To purge this internal hoard of things I wish I'd done back then, and choices I made. Things that I need to finish.. Limbs I need to sew back on. Tabs I need to pay. To deal with the tough parts of my past that time after time are enough for me to justify sabotaging anything resembling a successful and authentic future.
I need to have a come to Jesus with young Ali.. and we are going to pay our tab if it kills us. Ugh, Amen.
Over the last 5-6 years, my life has been one dramatic change after the other. Starting with but not limited to, separation & divorce. Regret and the feeling of loss after losing your home & your security. The trauma of realizing too late that the choices you've made mean that you will miss out on half of one of your children's lives. And this is only the beginning, folks! I plan on ripping the band-aids waaay off. With scabs still attached an all. Failures, relationships, baby daddies, babies, work, lack there of, substance abuse, death, unkempt promises.. It’s gonna’ be a blast!
Young Ali took some shrapnel to her pride. Old Ali is tired of walking with a limp.
I realized that like me, the idea behind this website and blog is just as much about the journey, and the ideas, as it is about the finished products. Since it has been whatever I have needed it to be, at this point in my life I am going to need it to be a healthy coping mechanism.
I need to talk through the choices and consequences. I need to finish everything that I have started, so I can move forward in one piece. Most importantly, I need to figure out a way to balance the self-help, goals, career aspirations, and responsibilities, with being a single mom and starting over. Without gulping away my future by the fishbowl.
Which brings us here.
While I have no clue exactly what this thing is yet or if it is a good idea to launch unfinished, I do know that tomorrow I will regret it if I don’t start this journey today. When this thing goes live it will literally be the website equivalent, of me. Everything I have done, that I do now, that I want to finish, and that I want to become. Some of it for sale, most of it just acting as a very public and possibly embarrassing personal inventory.
Since success is relative and taste is an opinion, I think I can handle that.
I plan on continuing this blog for as long as I can, writing as often as I can. Realistically, posts will not be consistently released, and the subject matter will be all over the place.
Ironically, I spent the entirety of this day doubling down on consequences and punishment if my two children did not finally clean and purge their playroom. I don’t know what my punishment will be for refusing to finally clean and purge the messes that I have made. But I know that it will be way worse than, “No new Christmas presents!”. (I would never do that to them! ..Or me, pssh!)
I do plan on keeping up with this blog for at least 10 years. What?! Here’s why..
One of my favorite tips that I have learned from all of these gross self-help books on tape that I’ve been enjoying lately, is this.. Write down your goals. Either, a list of new goals written daily so that you can focus your efforts and be more efficient in the short term. Or, long term goals posted in a conspicuous place that will act as a constant reminder, and that little inspirational boost we all need in our day-to-day.
Make them your “why”. Why am I doing this? Why am I working so hard? Why does my back hurt, and I why do I feel like giving up? Why do I even care?
I’ve decided to level up this idea for myself.
Whhyyyy, you ask?! Because its fun, I answer! Also, Young Ali devoured most of Old Ali’s fun rations, and Old Ali is starving. Plus, grown-ups do weird stuff for fun.. Like create elaborate and embarrassing metaphors.. We create all-things embarrassing really. Am-I right?! (High-five!)
This morning I got out three envelopes, three pieces of graph paper(my favorite), my red ball-point editing pen, and a hodge-podge of stickers that my girls magically materialized for me from lord knows where. I labeled the envelopes “1 YEAR”, “5 YEARS”, & “10 YEARS”.
On each sheet of paper I made a list of realistic goals achievable in each length of time. I wrote about my kids, myself, my career, romance, health, charity and volunteering, pets. I also wrote down big, lofty, pie-in-the-sky goals. My “embarrassing” dream goals.
I folded up the lists, stuffed the appropriate envelopes, licked all the glue myself, and sealed them up. With the girls’ help, we added a little extra security. They scrawled their signatures across the seals. I wrote the date. We all added random stickers, scribbles and tape. We then took pictures for proof and then hid them in a safe spot.
The goal is to work hard and to blog away until we open the first envelope on November 17th one year from today. The second envelope 5 years from today. And the last envelope 10 years from today. No peeking, no editing. We will compare the lists with where we actually are on our journey, and where we wanted to be. Everything will be documented here.
I’m not sure if I will equate success with making every ideal on the list reality. I guess that’s part of the journey. Finding out who I am at the end of this. Maybe success will come from putting in months of the kind of difficult self-work that will allow me to accept life’s twists and turns for what they are. Random.
Gross. That doesn’t sound like me..
The goal here is to work hard and blog away. The rest of the goals will follow.
That sounds like me, and seems pretty straight forward. Right? I think so too. A-friggin-men.
If certain items on the lists come true, it is going to feel like magic! If other items do not, it will be devastating. A couple of the items.. I can already feel the burning-red-skin-tingling-wave-of-embarrassment creeping over me! Oh man, this might be a horrible idea.. Too late, you’re committed Ali. Both of you.
I guess this is actually where were at. The end of my illusive first blog post! Finally! We’ve got a little background, a downfall, a desire to rise, a list of goals/a “why”, a way to achieve them, and a “game” to keep it interesting. It’s like “Hunger Games” up in here!
Side-bar, but very important in determining if we are going to get along or not.. Team Peeta? Or Team Gale? We’ll do a follow-up for sure..
I think we did it! Just in time for dinner and family game night. I am so thankful that tomorrow I won’t have to feel the disappointment of not starting this today. And that I wont have to type for the 9th time, “so let’s get started”. Because we just did..