Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wonder - fully creative

No doubt Wonder Woman had to get creative in her crime fighting adventures.  To paraphrase, there are many ways to catch a thief, and Wonder Woman used her incredible powers to solve all sort of problems.

While I'm no crime fighter (except for brotherly crimes that take place in our living room), at last, after 41 years of trying, I'm recognizing that I am creative. 

When I was in Grade 2, we had an Easter school project.  We had to make a bunny with movable parts, using paper fasteners.  I diligently worked on that project and proudly brought it to school.  I distinctly remember that day.  I stood up to show my bunny.  The teacher laughed at it.  As did my classmates.  I was devastated.

That moment permanently etched itself in my mind, and 35 years later, I still think of it from time to time.  And I truly believe that that particular moment squashed years of confident creativity.  I described that moment at a Mom's club meeting one day, and it brought me to tears.

I have never considered myself to be artistic or creative.  I had no confidence in my drawing, coloring, or general art related abilities.  And I think it was all because of that awful second grade event.  Even at grad school in an urban design class, I was terrified and embarrassed to share my simple drawing.  All done using rulers and easy lines.

But recently, I've been seeing things in a different light. 

I've done a lot of scrapbooking since I had children (though I am years behind!).  I love the feel of paper in my hands and the designs I can create with simple cutting and pasting.  My early attempts were pretty rudimentary, but my skills have evolved over the years.  And looking through my albums, if I do say so myself, my pages are not bad at all!

And I'm now embracing another love of mine - cake decorating.  I've learned that decorating a cake is really a set of relatively simple steps. But when put together, they produce an incredible result.  Just like the brush strokes of a painter.  When taken individually, they are simple marks on a canvas.  But put together, there is a beautiful picture.

I'm finally realizing that perhaps I'm creative after all, and that perhaps I even have talent. 

I made a sandcastle cake last week for a Bar Mitzvah with an "underwater" theme.  For almost 190 people!  And I loved EVERY minute of it.   Without question.  And the pride when I delivered it was something I hadn't felt in a long time.  

I found something that I was passionate about.
That brought joy to almost 200 people.
And I was creative.

I can't believe that it has taken me over 3 decades to reach a point where I am truly proud of something I have created.  I suspect that here are many others out there who feel the same way.  We have little confidence in our abilities to create a masterpiece.

But all it takes is a few simple steps.  Put them together, and something beautiful can appear.

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