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Strength to Care

Lessons from Matthew & Isaac – Our CHARGE Syndrome Journey

Where are your Crayons?

While I was growing up and in grade school I was not the stellar student. I had a hard time sitting in a chair at a desk and concentrating on what was happening in front of the class. I was placed away from the windows on purpose as I had a tendency to look out the window and “daydream” when I should have been doing schoolwork. I was constantly being confronted with the fact that I was “doodling” on my papers and on by textbook covers…so was my life as a right brained child. What my teachers didn’t see was my vivid imagination that took me places I could not physically go. Far away lands that I could draw in my head and then transfer to paper all the while appearing as if I was not listening or participating in the class discussion of nouns and verbs. I actually could concentrate better if my hands were busy.

Matthew's Creative Art Glove

My goal here is not to start a debate about learning styles or the educational system, but rather to point out that we have a tendency in this information era to cram our minds with facts, figures and useless trivia to the point that we can become so saturated with information that we dull our ability to be creative and think on our own.

“I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important that knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”  Albert Einstein

I love how Matthew can just stare out the window or at the ceiling at “nothing” and then just start laughing. It shows me that he is just as creative as I am. Theresa (my wife for those keeping score), asks me all the time the same question frequently when it appears that I am just staring off in space or not talking while we are driving somewhere…”what are you thinking right now?” I usually respond with…”nothing”. Actually, I may have been thinking about a new blog topic, how to fix the dryer, why are all the cows in that field all facing the same direction, when is the next Red Wings game…all of this probably in only a few seconds of time. You see, for creative people and I suspect for Matthew as well, we are being creative and doing our best thinking when it looks like we are wasting time.

“What no wife of a writer can ever understand is that a writer is working when he’s staring out of the window.” Burton Rascoe

Rolled up diaper tag in my shoe

What I find fascinating about Matthew is is evergrowing quest to stash diaper tabs. Let me first explain what a diaper tab is for those who grew up with the cloth and pins or the early disposables that had an adhesive tab. Newer diapers have a Velcro tab on each side that pull over and attach on a landing strip in the middle of the front of the diaper. Matthew has an obsession with his diaper tabs in that he will tear the left one off every time he has a diaper change…only the left one due to the right handed one having a printed code on it…he needs a clean palette I would assume. A few of these tabs end up on a sock, a dog or just stuck to the carpet until disposed of. The vast majority of them though are creatively stashed around our home and cars. There have a been a few frosty mornings when turning on the defroster in the car that I have had to duck a diaper tab flying past. Many of them find a home in a crack or crevice such as between cabinets, in register vents, the piano and the television speakers. My favorite one this past week was the one I found rolled up and stuck in the pull tab in the back of my shoe. Doesn’t it just make you wonder how he creatively came to that decision?

Author and speaker Wayne Dyer is quoted as saying; “Don’t die with your music still inside you. Listen to your intuitive inner voice and find what passion stirs your soul.” What stirs your soul, what music is still inside you? The following is a excerpt from the Crayola Crayon media page on thier website:

“The average child in the United States will wear down about 730 crayons by his or her 10th birthday (11.4 64ct. boxes or 7 lbs. of crayons) enough to cover an NBA basketball court!”

Have you put your crayons away? What are you going to do this week to be creative? When will you take time to just think? I start my day with a time of prayer, reading and just taking time to think. If you see me staring out the window or the wall just remember…I’m working.

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