It started with an action figure lending-library. Then a birthday gift certificate to Things From Another World led me to browse many graphic novels and comics, which led me to see the common themes between the characters I knew at work and those on the pages. Talk of offering a workshop began. I approached others within the comics community requesting input. While those familiar with character growth and journeys thought it a novel idea, those inside were a bit skeptical. Going on the fourth workshop, they’ve since warmed to the idea and look forward to this week’s special guest.
Four months ago, I wouldn’t have guessed that asking people to delve into their harsh realities and rusted pasts that crushes would develop. Harmless and fleeting ones of course, but not to be completely disregarded. To a lesser extent, but still of a positive relationship leaning, my interactions with those who previously were nearly mute in my direction are now inviting me to do things with them or just finding excuses to say something to me, to have some form of interaction. In short, nearly all of my interactions are warmer with those who are interested in the workshops- though they may not have participated yet and possibly never will.
Perhaps these interactions have a base in the common experience of recognizing themselves in others as a result of sharing that they too have a past similar to Superman in that they’ve lost a home they loved, or Wonder Woman in that they’ve lost their father, or Wolverine in that they’ve found the body of a close loved one. Like Robin they’ve had criminal pasts, and so on. These shared tragedies haven’t created a feeling of sadness to flow, but rather they have created a strong basis for an encompassing bond to form. Those bonds have given light to deeper meanings well below the surface of the presented self, at the softer core of the street hardened soul.
In just 3 workshops, that I was convinced no one would attend, compassion and true self have cracked the surface and found expressions.