I never know if what I’m doing is right or wrong.
I’ve exposed Yume to painting, and to no ones surprise (except, maybe mine) she loved it. At 6:30am, she will say “Mommy, paint! Paint! Paint!” while pointing to the area on the shelf where I keep her crayola watercolor paint set.
Her freedom drives me wild. I love it. Love it so so so much.
I have taught her to wet the brush before she dips it into colors. I’ve taught her to “clean” her brush before moving on to a new color. The first lesson she does, the second...not so much.
I can sit and watch her paint in absolute satisfaction. My heart to the brim with happiness.
She loves colors. She can point to a color and announces the name of the color with ease and pride. Brown. Black. Red. White. Bluuuuu.
She knows it. It’s amazing.
in her pursuit of color knowledge I decided to show her how to make a rainbow.
Her face filled with delight. “Bainbow. Bainbow” (we’re working on pronunciation, haha)
She recited the colors as I painted them
And then, in my stupid adult thinking, I assumed she would go back to her free painting style... but, what happened next muffled my excitement. She got a fresh piece of paper, but instead of jumping right to her painting, she looked at me and said “Mommy, bainbow please”
My heart died because i knew what I had did. I’ve studied it in my art classes, I purposefully never did it while I was an art teacher...but I did it as a mother... I unintentionally robbed her creativity with a lesson.
she will try for a moment to paint in her own way, but will look unsatisfied, and then look to me to paint her a rainbow. Ugh. Failure doesn’t even begin to describe how I feel.
In so many ways, I know what teaching can do for children, all of the benefits, all of the shaping, all of the structure...the good things—the control — one can get out of teaching a child.
But, I also know how teaching a child will turn beautiful paintings into requests for “pretty” rainbows.
My only saving grace from this is that rainbows are things of nature. There is science involved. The color spectrum. The color wheel. Light, water, prisms...we will see it after rainy days, and can have conversations about it....
but, ugh. If I could go back in time, I would have never mentioned the rainbow, would have never taken the brush from her hand...
i Will let the rainbow be a lesson for me, and hopefully, this moment will fade as rainbows do into a new bright moment of fresh creativity.