Hey there! Been awhile since I’ve posted and feeling a bit guilty about it. Time does get away from you doesn’t it? I have had some travel experiences that I will be sharing in the next few weeks, but felt a need to get this particular subject out there. In my Beyond Layers class we have had a week of color. Monday was Green, Tuesday – Yellow, Thursday – Blue, Friday – Red, and Saturday – Rainbow. This photograph was my contribution for rainbow and brings me full circle to the beginning of this course where the first lesson was to write about our creative journey. It took awhile for me to write out my thoughts – I’m not really a writer, but eventually settled on sharing when my journey began. The following is my short story. Before moving on to the story I hope this may inspire you to write out the story of your own journey. Where it began, or how you feel about the path you are currently on. We all have a story to tell. If you are willing to share, shoot me an email with a link to your story. Would love to hear from you.
My Creative Journey Began
There, on the table next to the bowl of chicken soup, was a box of 64 Crayola Crayons. I ran my fingers across the tips of color; chestnut, violet, and marigold.
But I’ve gotten ahead of my story. I must start at the beginning. The beginning of that day.
I was 5 years old, sitting in the classroom, not feeling well. I didn’t want to say anything. Didn’t want to spoil the day. I loved school. I looked forward to it every day of the week and was thankful then that the weekend was only two days long, and then I could go back to school. I loved finger painting. Loved playing with my friends. Loved my Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. King, with her soft warm hands and kind smile. Her eyes looked into mine that morning and I could see, she knew. She walked toward me with her kind smile and touched her soft warm hand to my forehead. “You need to see the nurse” she said in a low, concerned voice. She gave me a note she had written in a beautiful script I could not read and sent me on my way.
I walked down the long hallway, past crayola drawings and tempra paintings, to a room with its door open. I entered the white room,which held a small bed, table, and two chairs, and handed the note to the nurse. She glanced at the note, then at me and touched my forehead. “We should take your temperature” she said. I sat in one of the chairs trying to keep the thermometer under my tongue, swinging my feet forward and back, trying to look well. Another girl, my age I think, came in wearing a yellow dress, pink sweater, and carrying a note. The nurse inserted a thermometer in her mouth too, then came over to remove mine. Her mouth moved with the words “you have a fever. We need to call your mother.” The nurse left the room to make the call. I got up, looked at the other girl with the thermometer still in her mouth, smiled, then turned and left.
I got back to class and told Mrs. King my first ever lie “the nurse said I was fine and could go back to class.” She asked to see ‘the note’. Well of course I didn’t have a note so I told my second lie and said I lost it. Mrs. King asked her assistant to watch the class and, taking my hand, we began the long walk back down the hall. I pretended to look for ‘the note’ without success until we reached the white room with the open door. The girl in the yellow dress was lying on the bed looking sad, and to the left my mother stood. “There you are” the nurse said “we thought you were lost.” Mrs. King gave my hand a gentle squeeze saying “get well soon.”
My mother thanked Mrs. King, took my hand, and led us quickly out of the room down the hall across the parking lot and into the car. It was a quiet ride home, but along the way mother suddenly made a stop at the store. “Stay right here, I’ll be back in a minute” she said. She returned with one large paper bag, started the car, and we finished our ride home. As we walked in the door, she looked at me saying “get your pajamas on and come out here for some lunch.” As I changed into my pink flannel pajamas, I wondered what everybody was doing at school. Were they painting pictures with their fingers like we did last week? Was Mrs. King reading a story? Maybe a story about monkeys? I loved monkeys. In pictures they were always hanging by their tails with big smiles on their faces. I walked toward the kitchen with my head down thinking about the monkeys. When I got to the table I looked up and there they were, next to the bowl of chicken soup. A box of 64 Crayola Crayons. There was also a coloring book with pictures of the circus in it. On one page was a picture of a monkey. Mother had her back to me, busy with her ironing. I picked out a crayon called ‘chestnut’ and began coloring the monkey. I thought of the girl in the yellow dress, picked up the ‘marigold’ crayon and drew her standing with the monkey. I drew a smile on her face. My mother turned, looked down at the page, then at me. She smiled and said “you eat all that soup now.” I took a spoonful into my mouth as mother turned back to her work. The warm broth comforted my young heart in the pure joy of that moment. I picked out a violet crayon and began coloring a rainbow while my mother hummed a far away melody that I would never know.
(the photograph above was taken with a Nikon with a 35mm Nikkor f/1.4g lens, ISO 400, at f/1.4 and Kim Klassen’s ‘faved’ texture applied)