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There’s a book I read to my son almost every day for a while – The Construction Crew.

Okay, let me be more honest: most days I read it to him at least five times. If he saw the book lying somewhere in the room, he was excited to read it, right that moment. And then to read it again.

My son has a lot of books about trucks, but this one has long been his favorite. It’s something about the art.

On the last page of the book is a short dedication from the illustrator, Carrie Eko-Burgess.

It says, “For my father, Charles Eko, who told me when I was little to quit tracing and start drawing.”

The first time I read that, in a 5:30 am up-with-the-little-one haze, my heart exploded a little.

“For my father, who told me when I was little to quit tracing and start drawing.” 

What a gift to receive that message from a parent.

What a gift we give when we remind someone that they are ready, and they are enough, to quit tracing, and start drawing.

Where in your life are you tracing, when really, something is within you that wants to draw?

And where are we as a society still tracing something – some older picture that is supposed to show us the right way to do things – when in fact, it’s time to draw something new?

Love to you,

Tara

A little postscript. When I wrote to Carrie to get her permission to use the book cover image in this post, she told me how vividly she can still remember the moment when her father said this to her. She told me movingly, that her dad is even pictured in the book, a member of the construction crew. And oddly enough, we also discovered that the very day she and I had been corresponding, she and my son had serendipitously crossed paths. Of all the places in the world, that day, they both were walking around the very same museum in San Francisco.

 

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