She walks in beautiful elegant and yet so hesitant. She’s awkward and not so comfortable I can see. We set the table ready to start painting, and yet I get vibes that the ice must break first for the art to unravel from within her to the fullest. So I wonder where to start from.
After all, when I last had seen her she was this curly haired little princess but now a 14-year-old beautiful simple teen, but full of questions about life, full of confusion about where life is going, full of ideas, lots of opinions lots of dislikes, great taste of fashion, an unbelievable clarity on the beauty of women, an innate sense of fashion. She desired to paint fashion models with fairy like gowns…
Begins our beautiful bonding. She asks a million questions although awkward and I choke at each coz I knew I am back to the teenage talk I had just finished with in life after my kids stopped asking teenage questions. But it isn’t so awkward after all, we open up we disagree and find comfort in that, she embraces a stranger and I welcome a blossoming teenager. Me after nearly 25 years later helping draw the fashion crocies and gowns. Feels like I am back to hostel & college.
First few gowns I realize I am only hearing “I don’t like sketching, – I don’t like too many colors, I don’t like … and so I land doing a lot of work. We hold our fortresses, me with my patience and acceptance, She with her shyness and awkwardness. But we paint a few beautiful pictures, some we feel come out really beautiful and they are her colours. She is respectful, she asks, she understands, she respects, she cooperates, she’s flexible, she has sense of style, eye for perfection and just as we feel we are getting somewhere, the lockdown comes in.
We don’t meet for weeks. I miss her. Then it starts again. Now I see a different Moera. The real one. The compassionate girl, its not gowns anymore, it’s a variety of fashionista stuff, Kind that I have never done before, so we begin afresh. She now earning her own pocket money, by babysitting an ADHD child, she has emerged into a responsible teenager suddenly The one that this world awaits to embrace and get inspired by. She is not trained for it but has the patience, compassion and the heart to babysit someone no one finds easy. I see this caterpillar literally bloom into a butterfly. And yes that’s what she brings now to paint. See her work. It’s not the work of a girl who has got everything in life… this is My little Moera – a girl who has grown to make meaning of what she has faced in life and got in life.
She’s not my student. I learn my life’s lessons from her too. And yes now she does not speak of what she does not like, now she has clarity of what she likes – I think she likes me. Hahahha. I love her – but she says she does not love anything – phew! Relief to hear that from a teenager.
Little humor for us to end my words and let her work speak.