Search This Blog

Friday, December 17, 2010

Etch-a-Sketch Evolution & "This Too Shall Pass"

I passed by an Etch-A-Sketch the other day. A few (quite a few!) years ago the Magic Etch-a-Sketch was one of the most sought after Christmas toys. I know because it was in my letter to Santa Claus. And he delivered! I was so excited- for about 30 minutes. That's how long it took me to really comprehend that I could only make straight lines with it, with a million restrictions on direction. I have never been big on the "color within the lines" principle and that etch-a-sketch drove me crazy! One little mistake and you had to either "work it in" or erase the whole thing. There was some satisfaction in vigorously shaking the thing and destroying a mistake but there was also the angst of having to shake out a really good creation before you could make another one. There was also the opportunity for some major sibling riots. I wonder how many contusions and lacerations were "etch-a-sketch induced" when one siblings shook the other's prized creation. The harder you fought to keep possession of your machine in the sibling tug of war, the more erasing took place!

I guess you really can make circles with an etch-a-sketch and elaborate designs are possible. I've seen some of them. But for anyone with a personality like me, and the attention span and level of patience- that is just not possible! I think a dose of Cherry Plum Bach Flower might have been indicated for me at times with my etch-a-sketch. I'm pretty sure I threw it around the room a few times in frustration- definitely "out of control". Did I mention it drove me crazy!!

To the makers of Etch-A-Sketch, I would like to offer you a few drops of Rock Water Bach Flower. It is the essence indicated when you could use a bit more flexibility in your life. If perfectly straight and predictable lines, black and white, rigidity is important to you, rock water could be helpful.

But - hang on... the Etch-A-Sketch has evolved!! The new version of the same toy comes with a roller ball and a stylus. Now THAT'S what I'm talking about!! You can make free-flow shapes, swirls and curves, squiggles and out of control markings in whatever direction you want. Much more flexibility!

But there's still that "erasability" factor... When you don't like what you drew or you're tired of your picture you can just shake it up and it disappears. But if you really like your picture- it's the only one you can have- shake it up and it's gone.

Hmm... sounds a bit like life? I think the lesson to be learned is "this too shall pass". We use that phrase to comfort people when we "don't like the picture"- meaning that with a bit of time, things will look different, change will occur, the shake up will blur the picture and you can start all over again. But in it's pure form, that phase also means, treasure the good times, because those pictures fade in the shake up and new experiences happen. The point is to be present in "the now" and just "be"- good or bad, it's all an experience and all part of life. You can't hold the good times any more than the bad- life is meant to be experienced. It's the process of "being"; the journey, not the destination. Or in the case of the Etch-A-Sketch- the drawing not the picture.

If you want a perfect picture on an Etch-A-Sketch- find someone else- I'm not the person to help you with that! But if you want some help along the journey- check out my website and see how Bach Flower or Perelandra essences might help you through both the good and the bad times.

Maybe I'll try making something out of that Etch-A-Sketch again...

1 comment:

  1. ughh, never thought about it but 'etch-a-sketch', doesn't it sound kinda sketchy?? That is, there is no substance but just outlines. Amazing how we create toys that speak to our very profound sense of superficiality... and how toys then become mirrors of aspects in our lives, even relationships: it is often easier to erase the outline than to fill in the sketch - somehow I remember trying to fill in the sketch with just as much frustration, Heather, as it was trying to stay within the lines! Guess, time to get out some textiles for a splash of hand dying.....