Don’t Quit

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Success is failure turned inside out– 
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt, 
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit–
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.

– Author unknown

Thursday night I drove to the Lehigh County Historical Society Museum for the Morning Call – My Choice My Voice, Best of the Blog Awards. Thinking I would walk away without a win, but hopeful, by some small chance, I would rank among the very interesting blogs I saw. Save the Kales caters to rock stars and actors! Laughing at my Nightmare has 250,000 followers! The sport bloggers are quite amazing – Noise Nation’s Horns and Bells won the “Best Blog” award.

So why did I put myself out there? As a parent and educator I have told my children and so many others that they could do anything they wanted – if they worked hard enough, persisted, had the right timing. The one thing I left out though – and I know it is, as the Visa commercials say – “Priceless”! is that everyone needs a cheerleader, a champion, someone who gives honest feedback. We all need someone who encourages us to get up when the going is tough. Try, try again! 

The Void

Last night I went to my daughters Senior Art Show – Waxing and Waning at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. After three years at UArts she is going to graduate. It has not always been easy – hours in the studio, working at Starbucks, reading and writing papers. There were days I would get phone calls that she was tired or sick or worried that she would miss a deadline! She rarely did. I met her friends, teachers and mentors. Lots of people cheering her on. She will be a force in the world of printmaking. 

While her work was truly breathtaking, bringing tears to my eyes as I walked into the room, the real art was her grace and confidence. I watched my daughter shine as she talked about her print making to the hundreds of people who came in and out of the show. She knows her technique and had full command of explaining her craft. Kera was welcoming and self-assured! The show was fun and playful. She made it that way – and I am so proud of her. Kera’s teachers, friends, and family all together, a culmination of the delicate balance of being a cheerleader, champion and critic. 

I am thankful for all the mentors I have – the friends, family and teachers. I am thankful for the people who do the same in schools and families, neighborhoods and workplaces, communities and villages! My hope and dream is that all of us take a chance to be our best – and whether we succeed at first is not what is important – it is that we try and we learn. So whether it is a blog, an art show, a new job, a new school, or a move across the country – I wish us all success. But if success is elusive I hope for persistence, the ability to get back up and put yourself in the game, to try, try, and try again!

 

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