As women we often have a tendency to compare ourselves, to look at others and think "Mary has it together so much better than I, she is always so patient and calm, she always stops to listen to her children, she bakes her own bread and feeds her family nutritiously, teaches her children to embroider and weave, plants her own crop and her children are involved in so many more enrichment activities than mine. I'm just a failure as a mother, I hardly do any of those activities with my children and I lose my temper and I don't...."
The truth is we are all unique, we have each been given different personalities, skills, talents and interests. We as women need to accept who we are, build on our strengths, stop looking at others, be strong and rejoice in ourselves. For many years I focused on what my friends did far better than I, they instinctively knew how to decorate a home, spent hours handcrafting with their children, grew thriving vegetable gardens and milked their own cows. These are wonderful interests, but what I had to discover was they were not my interests. Our Heavenly Father had given me, my own unique personality, skills, talents and interests and I needed to embrace them.
What I do provide my children with is materials and time. Truthfully though creative materials may gather dust for months at a time and then all of a sudden, a creative pursuit becomes all engaging, generally taken up by the majority of the children and days and days are spent upon this endeavour. How to Draw books are hugely popular in our home, and we always have good drawing pads and pencils. The above picture drawn recently by Princess 11, is an example of a creative 'boom' when Princess discovered a previously unknown talent and interest.
As well as having a variety of supplies on hand for all sorts of creative endeavours I have found I need to support our children in their creativity with time. This can be a challenge as I struggle to 'let go' when I see so many other areas they 'should' be working on. Recently when Michelangelo 14, spontaneously created K'nex models for several days, I had to 'bite my tongue' many times when I thought of all the lessons he wasn't completing, such as his maths and writing assignments. Yet when I looked at the 'bigger picture' he was learning many other skills; engineering, science, spatial awareness etc etc. Maths and writing skills he could learn another day, and he will, but if I want to support my children in creativity then I also need to allow them large chunks of time.
Don't assume I have squashed all my 'inner guilt' I still struggle at times with what I'm not doing, but somehow our children are still learning and I'm far happier having embraced my own unique creativity.