Having a child is amazing. Sometimes she does weird, quirky things, and I realize, “oh my goodness, she thinks just like me!” Suddenly I have a whole new window into my own childhood and a deeper understanding of myself. I wrote about that earlier this week in my blog post called: Someday You Will Have A Child Who is Just Like You
The day I realize my daughter are I are alike.
A year and half ago we visited a local Homeschool Group. At the time, my oldest daughter was almost 4 years old. The children in the class we visited were ages 5-7, so she seemed significantly younger. During art class, we learned about Monet and Impressionist Painting. The tutor asked us parents to “help your kids with their brush strokes.” I took “help your kid” a little too seriously. So out of all the kids in that class, we had the best painting. Because all the other parents actually allowed their children to do their own art project, because the children are the students. But I confess, I did have a lot of fun “helping” my child with her painting.
Later, at home, my daughter flipped the painting over, and used her crayons to draw the same picture (in reverse) on the back side of her paper.
Suddenly, I remembered myself as a child.
My childhood homeschool co-op, which met once a week, included Art Class. Every week, after class, I would go home and spend the rest of the day practicing whatever art technique I had just learned. I did not run to show my parents “look what I drew!” Because I was too old to do that. I also believed I was not any good at art. So I tucked my pictures away in a notebook somewhere. And forgot all about them.
Until years later, when I watched my daughter do the exact same thing.
I realized, my daughter loves art! And I used to love art too!
But I thought I was bad at it. So why would I love something which I am not good at doing?
Right after that, I heard about a workshop called, “Unlocked Creativity.” So I went. I had so much fun being free to be creative, without the pressure to produce a perfect master piece. Overall, I was surprised by the fun things I was able to create.
I bought art supplies, for my little art-loving child…and for myself.
While I was at the craft store, there was another mom also looking at colored pencils. She mentioned getting more supplies for her daughter, who is an artist.
I was thinking, “No way? Your kid is an Artist! That is so cool!” Then I realized, her child was probably not a famous, professional artist. Probably just a normal kid who loves art. But I suppose, loving art and doing art is what makes a person an Artist. That would mean, I could also call my art-loving daughter an artist.
What is a parent supposed to do with all this art-work?
Fortunately, my little engineer likes to disassemble things. So any artwork from preschool or church is demolished on the car ride home. She also loves using scissors. Usually once she has filled a coloring book, I let her cut out pictures. Once the book is completely destroyed, I can throw it all in the garbage.
Usually, I have to work hard to preserve my favorite pieces of her art work.
A couple days ago, I got a pad of colorful construction paper for my daughter. Apparently she has no idea that you’re supposed to pull the individual pages out of the pad. So she has been using it like a blank coloring book, carefully turning the pages.
Then she announced, “Mom, you know the book of colorful papers? Well, I drew a picture on every single page. It is completely full” I was expecting her to ask for scissors, next. Instead she said, “I made a coloring book. Now I am ready to sell it!”
Haha. Oh my! She is 100% our kid!
So I asked my little artist, “do you want to be Coloring Book Designer?” I stopped myself from adding “when you grow up?” Because, why wait? She is already an artist and clearly she in convinced she can also be an entrepreneur right now. Which is awesome!
Various times when she has requested, “can you buy (this crazy item) for me?” I have respond, “Someday when you grow up, you can get a job and make money and buy whatever you would like.” (and hopefully have the wisdom to not waste your money on that crazy item). Obviously she has been watching Mama and Dada make things to sell. So she is thinking, why “wait till I grow up and get a job?” (what is a job anyway?), I can make stuff to sell right now!