Just finished teaching a couple of classes at Art and Soul this past weekend. I've been telling everyone that I'm preparing to retire from teaching.
The little doll above was made by one of the students in class.
Before I go into the classroom I feel anxious and a bit overwhelmed. It's the same kind of fear I feel about boarding an airplane.
But once in the classroom I feel alive and not at all afraid. Instead I feel connected to the people who have come to learn. I feel like I am doing the most natural thing in the world and the thing I do best.
I have a dilemma inside me. An argument over whether to use my energy for teaching or making my own art.
I ask myself which matters most to me, my studio time or being an instrument to encourage others. I do both of course but each one could be a full time committment.
I was very happy this weekend. I loved being in the classroom again. I don't know of a nicer group of people anywhere; free of judgment, conflict, competition.
While our hands are busy we talk about our lives. We laugh about things that when faced alone would make a person weep. We lean on each other. There is an energy in the room that is joyful.
While we make these objects there is deeper work going on.
If it were just about the things we create I think I could let it go.
But it is more than that.
Although the things we create bring us a lot of happiness.
You should have seen how happy we were when we lined up our dolls and saw what we had done.
Each little creation was a surprise and a wonder.
I'm thinking I probably wont quit teaching just yet.
It was a good way to usher in the month of October.
To sit quietly in another classroom the next day and play with photographs of our families. Making gifts for people we love.
Sharing our stories and making new friends.
Thank you sincerely to all of my students who shared such a happy time with me. It was very good.