For months or possibly years, we never used our dining room table. The formal one that held feasts for holidays. For months it held nothing but glass and tools. I used to watch him as he cut colored glass, as he laid out the pieces in patterns that would become hanging kitchen lamps.
Children back then were seen and not heard.
I sat in silence watching his silence, watching his passion as he forgot I was there observing. I became very good at being quiet and observing. A cigar hanging off his lip with the longest string of drool mixed with ash falling to the table. He was simply too focused on what he was doing to stop and breathe or swallow or even find an ashtray.
Thirty years later, I learned that it was actually my mom who fueled that passion in my dad. She saw the ad, somewhere in my childhood of New Jersey, she signed him up for night classes, and so he learned to create beauty from stained glass.
I will never forget the image of my dad hunched over that dining room table creating art from tiny pieces of glass. it was him letting down his guard, and letting me watch him create. it was the best gift he could have given me.
Share your passion, your creativity, your spark for life. Don’t be greedy and keep it to yourselves. Find it. Whatever it is. And share it with your kids. Let them watch your creative process. It’s the greatest gift you can give them.