Saturday, August 18, 2007


WHAT HAPPENED TO COLORING?

I loved school. Loved everything about school. Loved the clothes my teachers wore, their bright jumpers, turtlenecks with cute things imprinted on them. I loved their earrings, their necklaces, their coffee mugs, everything about them that said, "I'm a teacher." I can spot a teacher a mile away. My "teacher-dar" is as strong as my "gay-dar." Some teachers are a little better at throwing you off their track, they dress more fashionably, they might have the latest "it" handbag, but c'mon, they're not fooling me. Teachers, the ones that were BORN to be teachers, anyway, stick out like nurturing green thumbs.

Besides the way they typically dress, there is a warmth in their eyes, a deep patience, a knowing of the soul within each child, and a knowing of the child within each soul.

If you have someone in your life that is/was/will always be a great teacher, count yourself lucky. These people, men and women alike, that choose the teaching profession because they love children, make the world go round. A child well loved becomes an adult that is capable of great love. An adult capable of great love can do great things. Period.

At home I was anxious and worried. One shoe was off and the other was always about to fall. At school I felt warm, protected, nurtured, free to fly. Nowhere was I allowed to fly more than after lunch recess. I was lucky enough to have teachers from kindergarten through sixth grade that would sit in a chair or on a stool, after we all got back in from lunch recess. The teacher would read from a book that either she (I never had a male elementary teacher) picked, or the class voted on. While reading, we were allowed to color. I don't remember a scarcity of crayons, markers or paper. Abundance. An abundance of all the elements necessary to unlock the mind and allow deeper consciousness to be set loose.

It was at those times that I forgot all about who I was, and was completely transported by the book and the places in my imagination that were open to me.

What happened to coloring?

What happened to letting the mind wander off the page while the crayon moved in concentric circles just for the hell of it?

What happened to the little house of my youthful drawings? The one with two symmetrically placed windows to either side of the cute front door? The windows with four panes each and attractive curtains tied back with ribbon? The chimney on the right side, a swirl of grey smoke twirling upwards. The happy, smiling sunshine on the left side? A minimum of four cheerful sunrays coming straight out of the ball of sun? Two perfect clouds outlined in blue, one near the chimney, one near the sun? The tree or two beside the house? The little path leading to the front door? The green grass? The flowers growing randomly in the grass with their yellow centers and brightly colored petals? Daisies. Only daisies.

Where did that image, that illusion, that place of imagination go?

I wanted so desperately to live in that house. The house that was perfect on the outside had to be perfect on the inside, right? Only happy people could possibly live in a house that perfect.

Hmmm… yes. I chased the dream of that perfect house until I got it. I see that now. I live in that house. Perfect, symmetrical, a chimney, the trees, the green grass, the cute windows with four panes each. That is one perfect house, alright.

What happened to coloring?

What do I long to draw now?

10 comments:

fiN' said...

It was at those times that I forgot all about who I was, and was completely transported by the book and the places in my imagination that were open to me.

What happened to coloring?

What happened to letting the mind wander off the page while the crayon moved in concentric circles just for the hell of it?


OH MY F-ING GOD!!!

I live in that house. Perfect, symmetrical, a chimney, the trees, the green grass, the cute windows with four panes each. That is one perfect house, alright.

What happened to coloring?

What do I long to draw now?


OH MY GOD...I think I already wrote that!!!

Carrie, this is the best writing you have done. The power of the question with the open ended answer is the work of the greatest philosophers and wisest seekers continuously seeking. Thank you for your gift and for the flower of that gift.

As your friend and co-healer, I stand in great honor, NEXT to you offering complete, unequivocal support (which BTW, is what folks like us do).

kario said...

This is gorgeous, Carrie. A testament to your perseverence in finding that house, continuing to draw it even if you weren't sure it existed. I love that you allowed yourself to be that free away from home, allowed your imagination to run wild. It has, and will again, served you well, my dear. Keep finding the dreams and putting them to paper in one way or another and your will to achieve them cannot be stopped

Love you.

Terry Whitaker said...

Spectacular!

Michelle O'Neil said...

Beautiful Carrie.

Eileen said...

Your words are beautiful. So close to my heart. I wish I learned to to color outside the lines at a younger age. You remind me it is never too late to start. Starting by making choices out of love, not fear. Smartest words I ever hear. EVER.
Love.

Kim said...

One of the bests posts I have ever read.

Ditto Terry: SPECTACULAR!!

holly said...

WOW, Carrie. Did everyone.

Spectacular!

Good thing crayola keeps making more and more colors.

Anonymous said...

I guess you left the Honda dealership.
What a timely post.
I can hardly wait to read what you write about Rojo's and your daughter's re-entry to school.

Deb said...

Absolutely beautiful! I love the complexity and poignancy of this post.

I'll be remembering your words here as I get ready to greet 27 new-to-me 8 year old souls next week.

Thank you!

Suzy said...

Sounds like you found some new colors to draw with that take on a life of their own.

Love.
Suzy