The group

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I felt like I was moving very slowly this week, struggling with the thread for the panels. It went something like this.

How about just pink? (This is actually a neon color.)

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Not enough…maybe with orange?

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Better. Maybe add more colors? Green? Red?

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Too much. It’s getting distracting. Back to just pink and orange, with slight adjustments.

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Really thrilling stuff like that. Over and over.

I was also rethinking some of the characters on the panels. Here are some of the groupings in consideration on the board.

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With all this draining stuff I started feeling a little nuts, so where you see that brown drawing in the background up there, that’s me letting off steam with some big paper and new pens. Ah, much better.

Amidst all the crazy-making work that was going on, one day one of my daughter’s summer camp counselors told me that while my daughter is very enthusiastic about activities, she sometimes wants space when it’s group time. Meaning she wants to go be alone.

The counselor wasn’t saying it was a problem, she was just letting me know, but I checked in with my daughter about it that night, making sure there wasn’t some rude kid or etc. No, she said, she just likes to be alone with her imagination, so she’s not interrupted. I told her I thought it was great that she enjoyed her time by herself so much, but also that it was important to be with the group when it was group time. Not just because that’s the rule, but also because sometimes it surprises you and you get something out of the group that you didn’t expect. And because it’s important to bring what you’ve got, who you are, to the group. To contribute.

I felt like this was one of those parenting reminders that worked as well for me as for her. (And I’m sure you can guess where she gets those “I want to be uninterrupted with my imagination” genes.) I need to create a bit more group time for myself.

What’s especially funny is that I think this dynamic, between the individual and the group, is exactly what these panels are winding up being about. There’s an interesting space between a single person and even just two others, so many possible dynamics.

This week, here’s to finding your group, joining in, and making your contribution! And Happy Fourth, everyone!

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