Am I Crazy Yet?
In the fall of 2009, I was working as a recruiter and traveling nearly 1,000 miles per week. Needless to say, my theme song was Willie Nelson's "On the Road Again"!
I began contemplating change. Change... such a profound word. Five letters, one syllable and a definition which could go on throughout all eternity. Simple, yet overwhelmingly difficult. Rejuvenating, yet completely exhausting to even fathom. My desire for change seemed to be so much deeper than how I spent my work day. There was a desire for change in both mind and motion. I had been through some major transitions of change throughout my life, but most came out of necessity and demand. Could it be that I would actually choose to turn my seemingly normal and "steady" life into one filled with daily uncertainty, passion, creativity and adventure? I came to decide..... YES!
Had it been done before? Absolutely! In fact, I had done it before. Having had an interior decorating business in St. Louis for more than 20 years as my children were growing up.... I experienced the thrill and fulfillment of using my talents to help others decorate... while also engaging in the most important role of my life..... mother, to three wonderfully creative and young children. But now, as I approached my late 40's... single and two of three children "out of the nest"...could I return to that passion and turn it somehow into a paycheck? Would I survive? Better yet... would I thrive? I decided that the "pain" of staying in my current situation was greater than the possible pain in choosing a different path knowing that I might sink versus swim. Thus, my journey began.
The location was an historic former church along the Katy Trail, certainly a once in a lifetime setting! I began setting up "shop". "Shop" was an unbelievably beautiful store filled with antiquities, interior decor and my all time passion..... architectural salvage items. How did I pull it all together in a matter of 45 days to open the doors to my new "home" away from home?Adrenalin, passion, commitment and plain old insanity!!!
Grace "A Place of Restoration" was born. Grace.... amazing really. It was certainly through God's grace that I had lived the life of so many blessings. "A Place of Restoration"... salvaging and transforming broken and forgotten pieces of history into beautifully creative treasures. I could identify myself as a piece to be restored... and through this journey over the past year and a half.... I certainly have.
"Grace", is an extension of me. When visitors enter her doors, they are in essence, stepping into my haven in which I work, I live, I love and I share. Countless numbers of women have commented to me that I am "living their dream". (Of which I don't shatter their image by sharing the reality of a day-in-my-life description of exactly what the art of "salvaging" brings with it.... dirt, lifting, hauling...) I smile, both inside and out, and let them know how grateful that I am to be doing what I am doing and most importantly, grateful to be sharing what I do and what I create with them.
I am often stressed, but always blessed. I am often tired and sometimes feel like throwing my hands up in frustration and confusion as to how to grow my business, create even better ideas and treasures and at times.... simly make it through the day. But I am grateful for every single second of it. I am grateful that for today, one day at a time, I am not only living my dream but the dream of so many.
Posted by Karla Winchester