I've never really found my 'place', I'm usually the awkward one that's either quiet in the corner or overly loud due to nerves. I try to fit in, but I've never mastered small talk and inevitably I end up feeling like I'm sticking out instead. So when the Indie Roller podcast pinged into my in box and I listened to Emma from Little Pig Jewellery Design - it hit a nerve, but in a good way. Even after 10 years of being self employed in a separate business, I still find myself feeling a bit of a fraud as if I'm playing at being a business owner and any minute now an adult is going to call me out.
For example, I'm sitting at a meeting to discuss the creative future of my home town. I'm surrounded by project leaders, artisits, achitects, archeologists, historians and these were just the ones who spoke to me - and then there's little old me. But you know what, I do deserve to be here. I weave metal in one of the most ancient crafts that is now on the endangered list. It was once vital for armies to have a skilled mailler for all their armour, and although I'm not armouring anyone, I am providing a skill that is keeping it alive in the modern age. I would say that gives me every right to be at a meeting about the creative future of the town where I live. However I am also a child at heart so of course I'm sneaking sweets in the back row :-)
At the end of the day, I'm new to this world of indie biz owners, traders, creatives etc and I'm not going to fit in with everyone. Just like in everyday life you're not going to fit in with everyone, and if you did you would either be the most eclectic person in the world or you just haven't found 'you' yet. I'm nearly 40 and I grew tired of trying to fit myself into a mould that made unhappy. I'm slowly finding people that share similar outlooks to me, that are quirky, talented and funny - and I can't wait to work alongside them!