Balancing Our Why
Our big debut in the world of craft shows is less than a week away.
No, I’m not panicking. And no, I’m not on the struggle bus (though I may be out at the curb waiting for it—I know it could be here any minute now…) But I definitely have plenty of work to do before I can relax.
I’m feeling good about our setup, but I’ve got a few last-minute things to do. Sure, I’ve got plenty of inventory to put together before then, but I’ve also got some other details to take care of. I’ve got pricing signage to make, I need a logo to display somewhere in our space, I have to make sure I have something to wear with our logo, and I need to put together some kind of information on who we are and just what the heck it is we’re doing here.
Why that last “about us” piece tripping me up I have no idea. But I’m definitely struggling a bit.
It’s not like I don’t know myself and my family. It’s not like we haven’t spent hours thinking about our plan and understanding why it’s right for us. And it’s not like I’m shy about bragging on Nolan—because you know me better than that by now.
I think what I’m struggling with is wanting people to understand what sets us apart from other booths without objectifying Nolan. Honestly, that can be a struggle for me in the context of this blog, too.
Who wouldn't want to know that this guy is the reason we're there?
I think my biggest fear in this is turning Nolan into what’s known as “Inspiration Porn”. According to Wikipedia, “Inspiration porn is the portrayal of people with disabilities as being inspirational to able-bodied people, on the basis of their disability. The term "inspiration porn" is by analogy with pornography, in that the material is perceived as objectifying disabled people for the benefit of the able-bodied. Inspiration porn is a form of ableism. An example of inspiration porn might be photo of a child with a disability taking part in an ordinary activity, with captions targeted towards able-bodied people such as 'your excuse is invalid' or 'before you quit, try'."
Obviously, inspiration porn is a big subject to unpack on its own. I have not the time, space nor energy to tackle any of that in this post, but if this is a new concept to you I recommend reading the Wikipedia link that I quoted (and linked) above. It’s not all-inclusive, but it’ll give you a good working understanding of the idea along with a starting point in case you’d like to learn more.
But that fear of objectifying Nolan in our description definitely has me dragging my feet. Heck, I even volunteered to write this week’s post as a way to procrastinate. Is it obvious?
I just want folks who we’re meeting at our craft shows and fairs to understand that Nolan is our "why". There may be times where he’s not able to join us for a show. And even when he is there, he’ll need to be away from our space for breaks and bathroom runs. It would be nice to be able to let our customers know that he is why we’re there.
So I hope to be able to find a balance among why we do what we do, what makes us unique, and “hey our kid is awesome” (because parents brag—we’ve already been over that here…) On days where my brain was less overloaded and working better, I’ve managed to piece together something close—hopefully I’ll find something usable among that.
And I really hope I will, because I’m pretty sure that struggle bus will be here any minute.