Having it all, but not all at once.

In Diary 0 comment

Why on earth do I always leave everything to the last minute?

At least this is how it feels; under pressure with the clock ticking down and still so much left to do. I’m participating in a group craft exhibition at the National DesignCraft Gallery in Kilkenny and our pieces have to be submitted to the curator, Mary Gallagher, by Saturday, 3rd August. Of course I’m still working on mine.

National Craft & Design Gallery, Castle Yard, Kilkenny

I would probably make more headway if I didn’t have to also manage a household of five with an endless wash-rinse-repeat list of mealtimes, laundry, housework, grocery shopping etc. They help out a bit, but I’m my own worst enemy – an Irish mother who thinks only she can do it properly, even if I’m right a fair bit of the time. I am getting better at delegating, particularly lately as my workload has been happily increasing with more commissions and a new collection on the way. Oh yes, and this upcoming exhibition!

I sometimes wonder if women of my generation got the short end of the stick championing the belief that women could have it all.

We can, of course, just not all at the same time. And that’s a very important factor that you have to let sink in a second.

When I’m excelling at my business, there’s a good chance my housekeeping sucks. When I’m in Martha Stewart mode in the kitchen, you can be sure there’s a bespoke piece on my bench that is in need of my attention. Trying to be both marvellous mammy and mega business mogul simultaneously is unnecessarily stressful and emotionally damaging. I’m making my peace with my imperfect system; it’s messy and sometimes it feels like I’m slipping behind instead of barrelling ahead, but it’s a balancing acts of priorities and delegation. When I’m busy in my studio with a deadline looming, my family can fend for themselves. They’re on their own. Mammy has to clip the apron strings at some point.

So for the next week, my three grown children and husband can consider me MIA. These exhibition pieces will be made about as perfectly as I can manage. Perfectly imperfect, as my good friend Siobhan says, which is a lot like how I manage my crazy busy life.


MADE in Kilkenny craft collective

The exhibition by the acclaimed craft collective MADE in Kilkenny – into which I was welcomed as a member earlier this year – will be held in the National Design & Craft Gallery in Castle Yard, Kilkenny. We are honoured to have the exhibition launched by Fintan O’Toole, award-winning Irish journalist, author and academic, on Saturday 12th August at 1pm. All are welcome. The exhibition will run until Saturday 28th October. 


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