“Mommy, what is this?” Curiosity speaks again; a welcomed guest in our home for the last five years. He’s my children’s momentum, and sometimes my vexation. However, as he gently creates a world around my kids, I find it hard to not be pulled in as well. The spirit of inquiry and force of investigation are too tantalizing to resist. As a result, I find myself, hand-in-hand with my boys, on a voyage of discovery and exploration – and it’s thrilling to see the world as a child again.
The multitude of trucks. The long history of dinosaurs. The vastness of space. I’ve learned a lot in the last few years. I often ask myself, “Who is really learning from whom?” as the role of student gets passed back and forth between mother and child. And I’m grateful that the learning never stops; especially because I’ve learned a whole lot about myself in the process. Becoming a mom has had a way of teaching me about my strengths, my weaknesses, my priorities, my limits, and most recently – my interests.
When kids are at school, they are offered a plethora of opportunities to learn new skills. They dabble and move on, and eventually discover their capabilities and passions. For some reason, I didn’t pursue mine. I loved the arts and the opportunity “to create” was enthralling. As a preschooler, nothing tickled me more than an afternoon of sculpting rocks. Hello random. Then in middle school and high school, my binders and notebooks became graffitied with pen drawings and cartoon characters. I doodled a lot, but in my mind it was just a manifestation of boredom. My hard edges drawn with teenage angst didn’t look realistic. “I’m just not talented enough,” I found myself saying, and the drawings just stopped. In the last few weeks though, I decided to start sketching again. Curiosity told me to do it.
As I do my own dabbling in the arts and pick up old hobbies, I feel the child inside me start to awaken. It’s strange to be an adult yet feel like I’m starting over. I always imagined myself knowing exactly who I was by the time I hit my mid-30’s. Then a couple of months ago, I contemplated a tattoo and an edgy haircut. I guess I’m still figuring myself out. And maybe that’s okay if Curiosity pushes me down an ever-evolving path towards growth and rediscovery. I will continue to change in unimaginable ways as I learn more and more about the world and myself. Honestly, part of me feels afraid of the unknown, while another part of me feels excited for what’s to come.
So now, as I sketch my world with a child-like eye, I draw my lines more loosely. I hold my pencil with a lighter grip and just let the lines create themselves. Curiosity, you’re a house guest welcome to stay for a long time to come.