Finishing Things


IN MY FANTASY LIFE, I finish everything I start. In real life, not so much. 

Little pockets of incompletion lie everywhere. For years, a large chunk of my file drawer was devoted to unfinished manuscripts and I had shelves of books with bookmarks sticking out the top. Let’s not get into the craft projects and photos.

Moving into a smaller house forced me to face and deal with a lot of this.

Memories of my mother-in-law inspire me. An avid knitter, she always had a project going. ONE at a time. She’d acquire only the materials for the project she was about to start and see it all the way through to the end before purchasing materials for the next one. I admired that about her. She managed her stuff well. She knew what she had and why, where it was, etc.

FINISHING is a spiritual act. This dawned on me during Lent, while reading how Jesus prayed, “I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do.”(John 17:4)  I’m sure I’ve read and heard that dozens of time, but only just now noticed it.

Now, there are some things we start that we ought not finish. We see, as we go, it’s not working out or it wasn’t meant for us and we need to cut our losses. We learned something from trying, though. There’s value in that. Sometimes ‘finishing’ means bringing a thing to conclusion once and for all, deciding. For me, many quilt pieces ended up at Goodwill, along with the pattern. Someone was thrilled to find it, I’m sure.

In 2013, I replaced the seat in a chair. There are 4 chairs in the set. I planned to do them all. I purchased materials. I had good intentions. And that was where it ended, I guess. In the interim, we’ve moved to Kentucky. Unused spools of fiber rush came with us, as did the chairs, one of which had no seat because I cut the seat out of it at some point. The seatless chair is still at the table, but if we ever have guests, someone is in for a surprise. 🙂

Last week, over Spring Break, I got back into the chair project.

I did not cut that section away. It voluntarily disintegrated after 40 years. I would have loved to be able to patch it.

But to weave something new, we need courage to part with ALL of the old, so something new can go in its place.

Two down, two to go. A smashing photo of my chief assistant!

What is it you need either to finish or part with? 

About Marilyn

Reading, thinking, listening, writing and talking about faith, creativity, ESL for refugees, grief and finding the story in a story. Student of Spanish. Foe of procrastination. Cheez-it fan. People person with hermit tendencies or vice-versa. Thank you so much for reading.
This entry was posted in clutter, courage, finishing, following through, procrastination. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Finishing Things

  1. pastordt says:

    Love this!! And so, SO relate. Sigh.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sharon says:

    What a universal story! I can certainly relate: Skeins of yarns, strips of wool for rug braiding, 2 quilts unfinished, unfinished stories, AND the books with bookmarks fill the spaces in my home. If I wasn’t at Festival of Faith & Writing, I’d be inclined to finish something.
    P.S. Quite a cute chief assistant.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Belinda says:

    What a beautiful illustration of “completion.” And I, too, I love your little dog! May this be The Year of the Beginning of Completed Things, for all of us in your flock of recovering procrastinators.

    Liked by 1 person

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