If this is ultimately going to be OK, why do I keep bursting into tears?

This is one of those good news/bad news things. Which do you want first? I love the answer my friend Susan gave us when we asked her this last night (oh my lawd, was that just last night? It feels like a million years ago…) – she said she wanted the bad news first because if she got the good news first she wouldn’t hear it because she’d be so worried about what the bad news was. I am 100% on board with that.

Let me say first that nobody (that I know of) has been diagnosed with cancer, has been hit by a bus, had a horrible miscarriage, or any other such badness.

But for those of you who are regulars at our yarn store, or have been cheering from the sidelines, we have some news about some changes. I will wait while you go read that, if you want. doo dee dooo….. la la la la la…. doo dee doo…. back yet? Never left? Want me to just tell you in a nutshell, or recap if you just read it and your mind has gone blank? Hanks Yarn and Fiber is changing to a new business model that involves being online and no longer having a bricks-and-mortar storefront.

I have so much I want to say.

This is hard. The first few weeks I expect to be walking around the house trying to talk to Sharon, maybe even shouting out to her like she might be in the other room. It’ll be like when you can’t remember where you put your coffee cup, and you walk around with a sense of loss and irritation at yourself. The thought that I won’t see Nugget taking her brave steps across the floor of the yarn shop is like a knife in my heart; so is the thought of not seeing Little K push the little red rocking chair around. I love those kids SO!HARD! And that’s crazy, because y’all know what a bitter and black place my heart is. It’ll be hard because I feel like a failure. I feel like I am stupid and useless and have wasted the last three years on something that didn’t work.

This is easy. I’m going to get to do a part of the job I love – dyeing yarn – all the time. Maybe even in my PJs. I am reassured by my loving family that I am not a failure; that if anything, the economy has failed me. That Ginger and Sharon and I were strong and amazing for moving forward with our dreams, and if I was brave enough to do that three years ago I am surely just as brave now. This is not a failure. This is a re-imagining of our dream, set to fit the horrible status of the US economy. We won’t have the enormous rent hanging over our heads like a guillotine, and that will make things easier for us. Also, I can find a part-time job (file this under “maybe easy, maybe hard”) and get a paycheck, thus ensuring that our new kittens will not suddenly be made homeless.

This is the worst thing ever in the history of worst things. I am a failure. I should be put in front of a firing squad. Wait – actually? Yeah. Smack me. My father dying was worse than this. If I got through that I can get through this. We are given burdens in this life; also shoulders.

This is ultimately going to be OK. We are going to be able to reach heights with our lines of things online that we just couldn’t do in a shop setting, because of all the overhead. And the people who love us, love hanging out with us – that won’t stop. My time is easily bought for cold beer, cute pets, Satchel’s, Sweet Dreams, and Yum Cupcakery. And also easily bought just for being able to hang out with you. So… call me! After July 1st, my dance card is pretty fucking free!

And you know what? A lot of the reason I haven’t been blogging about personal things is that I’ve wanted to share my fears with you for such a long time. And I couldn’t. We thought we might save the storefront. We though we might be able to swing it; maybe move, maybe downsize… but we didn’t know. And I’ve been so confused and worried and wanting to talk to you, but … didn’t want to start rumors about the yarn shop that would make people think we’ve closed and thus make things worse. So it’s been easier to not say anything at all, rather than try to be fluffy. I’m looking forward to blogging more, to letting more of my heart out on these pages.

I hope you’ll stick around – both here, and on our online shop. I hope you’ll still like me. Because I love you – HARD!

14 comments

  1. Oh I’m so sorry to hear that. I really understand though. The economy got the better of my last job when they were forced to close. And my own online jewelry business seems so small and trivial sometimes. Like, being online only makes it a hobby or something. :/

    But ultimately, this is a really good direction to move forward to. You’re right; rent is stupid and insane and it makes surviving as a small business owner so damned difficult.

    You did a great job in a nightmare economy. Restructuring to online makes sense and does give you more opportunities to reach people who wouldn’t otherwise get to Gainesville.

    Still, I know it’s a tough blow and I’m sorry for that. I look forward to the new and improved Hank’s and when it’s up and running, I’ll be happy to link to your store on mine for whatever it’s worth.

    *hugs* Stay strong. It’s just change and growth – NOT failure.

  2. This will be good, promise. There will be more money for promotion and other things. A potentially larger clientele.

    Let me know what, if anything I can do to help. I’ll be happy to see if I have any knitters among my friends. I’ll give you a shoutout and a link anytime.

    It’ll be OK. And it’s OK to cry. xoxoxox

  3. I’m so sorry — what a difficult decision it must have been! I hope your online business is a success, and maybe when/if the economy turns back around you can return to a brick and mortar storefront again. In Columbus there are some larger retail spaces that have been subdivided and turned into “malls”. I’ve seen them used by the Somalian community in Columbus, but maybe the concept might work for small artisan or crafters shops? Maybe there are other small businesses that could benefit from that kind of arrangment: pottery, woodworking, needlework, jewelry, even specialty foods (I remember seeing a hot sauce vendor in a small shop within a store concept in St. Jacobs, Ontario).

    I have friends in Columbus who have used local coffee shops for “stitch and bitch” groups. They were small groups of maybe 5-10 people, but perhaps a local coffee shop would be willing to play host. It brings in business for them as well as helps community connections.

  4. Like the man said, “Do or do not. There is no try.” It’s not about failure, it’s about doing. You guys are awesome and you’ll always have my support. =) Cheers!
    <3

  5. And just when I didn’t think I could cry any more! You are awesome Lorena and you will always be awesome!

  6. I’ll buy everything I can from you guys online. Also, my school schedule through fall has lots of free time built in, so I will be happy to get you out of the house for beer or ice cream anytime you like. *hug*

    You are NOT a failure. You did everything right. It’s not your fault — or your partners’ — for the economy sucking great big donkey balls.

    I will miss the store, yes. But what made the store so wonderful for me was getting to see you and Sharon whenever I wanted. As long as I still get time with you guys in the future, I’ll be happy. *more hugs*

  7. OK, I know everyone is saying it’s going to be alright, there’s a new opportunity, another day, blah, blah. All of which is true. But right now I’m gonna say it out loud. I’m sad. I”M REALLY, REALLY SAD! I can’t say how much being a part of Hank’s meant to me. I remember when I first started to get comfortable coming there (and you don”t know how much of a challenge that was for me) I knew this was one of those golden Gainesville moments. Thank you for helping me get my creative mojo going again. I’m going to let myself grieve for a time and then be ready to go from there. Be strong.

  8. I think it’s only failure when you want to do something but you don’t actually try, as opposed to trying and having circumstances work against you. Don’t give yourself such a hard time!

    You are awesome and even thought the unknown totally bites ass you will succeed with bells on, my friend!

  9. Right back at you my friend – we all love you guys HARD too. I remain in awe of you, Sharon, and Ginger for taking the boldest and most beautiful step of creating your dream job. You are all strong and impressive creatures and I have faith beyond words that you will put your all in to making Hank’s Online a success. We’re all here standing with you, beside you, and behind you.

  10. A bitter pill for you, Lore. Or a slow tsunami. Fucking disaster, whatever.

    For some reason I thought of this Stephen Crane poem:

    β€œIn the desert
    I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
    Who, squatting upon the ground,
    Held his heart in his hands,
    And ate of it.
    I said: “Is it good, friend?”
    “It is bitter-bitter,” he answered;
    “But I like it
    Because it is bitter,
    And because it is my heart.”

    E-e-ew. I hope Tim won’t be barbecuing any organ meats tonight.

    See you at the birthday bash!

    Love, Unca Joe

  11. I’m so grateful for Hanks because my new passion for knitting would not have come about otherwise and my life is profoundly changed. I’m enjoying a new level of contentment, adventure and community that was truly needed. Your store provided something very valuable and I’m encouraged that the relationships will continue.

    We’re taking Gigi to Clearwater today for camp and this otherwise boring drive will be transformed while I stitch and listen to some of my favorite knitting podcasters. I have entered a new world and it is so FUN!
    Hugs to you, Sharon and Ginger,
    Verna

  12. yep, it took me this long to come and read it
    yep, I cried
    but most of all, yep, we love you too. SO HARD!
    we will keep in touch. for my own sanity, and for your influence on little K.

    this is a new beginning.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *