Do you ever recognize themes from your childhood? Last night as part of my Minimalist Challenge, I spent two hours combing through boxes containing important and sentimental documents from preschool through high school. Scripts from school plays I acted in, awkward school photos, drawings, honor roll certificates, newspaper clippings, piano recital programs. Even my 8th grade graduation speech, neatly handwritten on 3x5 cards was tucked neatly inside.
I sat cross-legged on the floor, surrounded by the tangible record of my life. Term papers that attempted to answer big questions like "who I am" and "the three things I want to have as an adult." (A big family, a lot of money, and to be a doctor or a lawyer, for the curious ones). Quite a big task for an eight year-old girl who loved the monkey bars and tap dancing. My 2nd grade teacher candidly wrote on the side of my report card- "Julianne is artistic and creative. She can, however, continue to show improvement in her mathematics." Still true.
But my drawings! Those were so fun to look through. I came across at least 10 pictures of rainbows that I'd drawn between age 4 up to the 5th grade. They evolved from thick, uneven smelly-pen rainbow lines to more sophisticated ones with gradual, even arches carefully shaded in with colored pencils.
Recently I've had conversation with friends about what I want. We all arrive on this planet with an artist's palette full of colors. Lately, I feel like I've only been painting with gray. But now I have this deep desire to use ALL the colors I've been given. I want to bring more beauty into the world. I want to live a full-color, full-contact life. Meaning being open and expressing all that I can offer. Not afraid to rub up against the unknown and the mystery.
I'm still in love with making rainbows. Except this time I'm taking it off the paper and making the world my canvas. Think about all the colors you have, too. It's not about smelly-pens anymore. It's bigger. We have the chance to make art with our lives.