coloring a princess {Tuesday artist date night}

This afternoon I found myself on an artist date with my daughter.  For a little more than an hour we drew, cut and colored a three foot princess on brown craft paper. 

I taped our project onto the craft table in my work space, and my first ten toes, the changer of my universe, perched on top. 

We talked little, except to exchange a few ideas.  My four year old daughter is a focused artist.  Wide green eyes and a broad smiling mouth were the first things she drew -- like her eyes always open, looking and seeing.  And her mouth wide with discovery and anticipation, smiling, mostly, as she goes, always wanting to participate; always participating.

Working with her I find my place and let her lead as we go.  I am soothed by the rubbing of crayon on paper, but more tense than I would expect to be engaging in this simple process. 

I think about the difference in our experience here at this table.  Her so focused on her masterpiece, a drawing that matches her in size, scooting over it with excitement and precision.  And me afraid of what my crayon marks will look like, not artistic enough, not saleable, not worthy of being hung on the wall.  How much purity in creation she has, how uninhibited by ideas of failure that only prevent one from succeeding. 

I feel so clearly my inhibitions, fears that restrict me even when alone in my own space with my daughter.  So in that moment I choose not to move on to another project and let my daughter finish the princess alone.  I choose to stay here at this table with her and draw silly lace with a crayon and color arms orange and purple, I choose to be present with her and with me. 

With gratitude,


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