As you probably read, this blog started out as a way to “find my way” into who I was and what I was doing with myself. It began in a very nebulous way, loosely bound together. Now, though I have never said it, here’s the truth.
This blog is about passion.
I realised this fact quite suddenly, reading this post by Cassie Stephens. Now if you have never read Cassie Stephens Art Teacher/Fashion blog, you really should. It’s got spunk! Her art projects are so cool, I want to be in her class. Sure beats to pastel colouring I thought was Art in Primary School. Anyway, she wrote this great article about writing a blog. I revisited it today, and this lovely paragraph really jumped out at me:
In my pre-bloggin days, I had my life very compartmentalized. I had my art teacherin’ day and my art-makerin night (if I was lucky). When I had to lesson plan, I resented that time was being zapped from my creative time. Then, one day, while grumbling over my stitching time being used for “work” time, I just thought: What if I sew a dress that co-insides with my lesson?! What if, while the kids are learning about England, I craft a Mary Poppins ensemble and read ’em some P.L. Travers’ books while serving tea and biscuits. And, suddenly, I became very excited. About teaching. About creating. About blogging. When you connect as many dots as possible in your life it will feel like suddenly you’ve got the ball rolling and there’s no stopping it. Try it. I ain’t lyin.
YES! My life has been very compartmentalised. I had my parenting, and homeschooling, and my hobbies in sewing and craft, and stuffed down the back of the couch for later was exploring. And it kinda doesn’t work. You loose the passion, the obsession, for everything. And you lose who you are. Yourself can’t survive being dissected.
The thing is, I actually really like parenting. I like homeschooling. I like creating things, and I like exploring the essence of places. I am passionate about those things. But if I try to tick off boxes there are just not enough hours in the day, and some of those things seem more noble than others, more worthy. There’s some sort of puritan, almost sanctimonious pride in being a martyr to some while ignoring others. Oh, how sad is that? And how FALSE! I’ve already written about how obsessions give energy. And how getting out and exploring something new can really save the day when things are hard. Why does it seem so reasonable, so logical to let some of those things slide, when it is really cutting off my nose to spite my face?
(I am fairly certain there is a reasonable component of my friendship circle that would say something about Patriarchy at this point. I am also fairly certain they are right. I’m just trying to keep the word count down.)
But if I let my obsessions, my passions, multiply and connect across these compartments? Let’s drag the children off to explore some crazy place. Let’s craft and make and let the kids do their own thing AND design with me (after all, my crafting skills are not that amazing, I’m sure they can figure it out!) And the discovery? I am discovering a new way of living, a new life. Where all the bits of the old can feed each other. And where not I, nor anyone else has to ask who I am because it is is part of everything I do.
Some people have clear, well-defined interest areas, but I’m not so good at that. I am interested in everything. There are lots of terms for that, some more derogatory than others! (But oh, the discovery of Geography, that discipline across boundaries, oh, that was something!) And this year, It was a wonderful gift, to realise that creation, exploration, discovery, were the things that had driven me all my life, that still drive me now. The form has changed over the years, the expression, but the urge has always been there.
Why am I blogging this? I think it is because I need to remember this. Having insight is one thing, but remembering to live that insight once the dinner needs to be cooked and the kids start fighting and I’ve lost my keys again… that’s hard. But I think blogging forces me to revisit what I am doing, it reminds me. It keeps me working towards something I want.