An Unexpected Spark

I think my absolute favorite part about what I do is getting to meet new people and hearing all of their amazing stories. It had been almost a year since I visited Bead Gallery in San Diego. Last Friday I met Belinda. We chatted for a little bit and I showed her a couple samples and pieces. She collected a few items and went on her way. It was a typical interaction in my eyes. When she returned on Sunday, my perspective on our encounter completely changed. She walked in with a huge smile and walked over to me to show me what she had created. Check it out!
by Belinda Butler

I looked at it and I loved it! She has used several different techniques which the big reason why I love mixed media jewelry so much. There are no rules! Anything goes! She had handmade several pieces using resin. She mixed them with several charms and components she had purchased from me and finished it off with a few extra special charms and beads that were very significant to her.  Belinda went on to tell me how she had lost her home in the wildfire catastrophe that surrounded Southern CA in a ring of fire a few years back. She lost everything as so many did, including one of the owners at Bead Gallery. Entire neighborhoods were leveled and have since been rebuilt. Belinda had managed to salvage only a few beads and a heart charm from the rubble that were slightly damaged from the fire. She included these pieces from her past in the new creation. All I kept thinking of was a phoenix rising from the ashes. Something from nothing, I could totally relate to everything she was saying.
I thanked her for sharing her story with me and asked if I could snap a few photos and share her story with you!

When I got home I received a lovely email from her. She went on to explain that besides the fire, the last few years have been filled with many personal challenges. She lost her creative seems more than actual "things" were lost in the fire. She was elated that she had found her creative outlet again and was so thankful for our chance meeting. It wasn't until I received her email that I fully grasped the impact we can have on someone. I was just treating her like I treat all of my customers. I didn't really think twice about what I said to her. I think sometimes regardless of our job we feel like we are just going through the motions at times. It amazes me how a few seemingly insignificant kind words can cause major change in another's life. It just reminded me that I am on the right path, some things are more important than any amount of monetary gain.
I came across a quote recently. It really spoke to me personally and is pertinent to this encounter.

"At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each one of us has cause to think deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us."

My own creative spark had grown dim a few months ago thankfully mine was re-lit by another angel in a completely unexpected manner. I was so glad to learn I unknowingly was able to pay it forward to Belinda in relighting her creative flame. So the lesson here kids is be nice to everyone you encounter! You don't know who you are going to meet and how they might change your life! We are all connected in an intricate web. The ripple effect is staggering. I can't wait for this weekend's show. Who knows what will happen next!

If you are in the area I will be at my hometown bead store Garden of Beaden in Upland, CA with my vintage and mixed media supplies, as well as several pieces from Melanie Doerman's Estate. They are truely a sight to see! I will be there Sept 13-15, 2013.
Friday 10-7pm
Saturday 10-7 and
Sunday 12-5pm
Come out to see what's new and feed your artistic flame! Hope to see you there! Glitterfest is also rapidly approaching... Save the date -Oct 12th in Anaheim!

Sparkle On!