The Freedom to Create
“I was across the street,” she says sheepishly, holding her paper cup of tea from another café. I order my decaf latte and we sit down outside. It arrives with a beautiful formation of a leaf on top. The sun is bright and blinding. Originally I met with Karen J. for an interview to write a mock online dating profile for her. I was applying for a freelance position that required me to interview one of my single friends and write about her life.
It was not hard to see what men would find attractive about her. At 35, Karen is a bright, accomplished woman who always seems to have a smile on her face. Her passion is pottery and she has been doing this hobby for the past year. In fact, she recently transformed part of her home to be a studio.
It is a meditative experience for her. “I love having a lump of clay that starts as nothing and then turn it into something with my own two hands.” This also applies to ideas and visions she has for her life. She likes to share her talents and recently she taught some friends to throw clay. It was rewarding seeing their excitement and she could see herself teaching pottery one day as a side gig.
Karen planted eight fruit trees in her home and made her own deck with the help of her former partner. She manages two renters and professionally works as a coordinator. She enjoys being resourceful for a living and paying attention to details. Having lived in the Philippines for two years with a family who made $40 per month for their income, she is grateful for all that she has accomplished.
Although she is single now, she’s reflecting on what she wants in a partner. The most important thing to her is that he is considerate of her needs. Karen has also made a conscious choice in her life to be childfree.
“I just can’t see wanting kids,” she said. “A lot of it has to do with not having a large enough financial cushion as well as a bank of time and energy.” Being a financially responsible person, she knows that having a child would be a big responsibility. Right now, she enjoys being able to have her freedom to create and work on her various projects.
“I have made this decision to not have kids and I have the extra energy to lend a hand,” she says. In fact, most recently she was able to deliver a dinner to a friend who just gave birth to twins. But because she is a person who has a lot to give, she still enjoys being around other people’s kids. Many of her friends are at a perfect age for having kids and she appreciates that.
Overall, Karen’s focus right now is to move forward in her life, to change and grow. And of course to find more time to create a few more beautiful mugs to sell at the farmer’s market.
Can art be a replacement for having children?
Photo courtesy of Karen