Sunday, May 23, 2021



"If it was easy, everyone would be doing it."

"Look out for someone who makes something look easy."

I was raised on such homilies.  My parents steered me in the direction of understanding that some things people did were skilled, to recognize when that might be the case, and to respect the effort that went into making (that thing) look easy.

I remember my mother sweating (literally) as she learned how to make roses from icing to decorate cakes.  How many times she tried and tried and tried - and failed.  But it was just icing and it all went back into the bag to be expressed through the nozzle over and over again until she finally managed to make roses.

I remember how many times my mother would rip out her knitting - or more importantly, mine - in order to re-do it to make it turn out better.  There was never any judgement, just, ok, let's try that again.

Failure wasn't something to be ashamed about - it was just another step in learning.  Mom's patience in showing me, over and over and over again, how to cast on was not an imposition on her time.  It was her gift to me to help me learn.  Same with cooking, sewing, embroidery.

Learning choreography in ballet class.  Fine tuning physical motions in track and field - especially field.  Throwing a discus meant try, try, try again to get that motion as close to perfect as possible.  Tiny tweaks each time.  Paying attention to my body - how it felt each time I tweaked what I was doing.

It is an attitude I carry into the classroom with me.  Failure IS an option, but it is not The End of trying.

After all, if it was 'easy', everyone would be doing it.

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