Update with Janis Mars Wunderlich


2 Responses to “Update with Janis Mars Wunderlich”

  1. It’s truly an “out-of-body” experience to watch yourself on screen!… I’m thinking– who IS that person–what is she going to say next–and why didn’t she tidy up the house before the film crew came over??! 🙂 I’m also overwhelmed at how my beautiful daughter has matured so quickly over the course of this film project!
    So…after watching this, I was curious because obviously MY perception of HARDLY ever traveling or being gone from home and my childrens’ idea of how I am gone ALL of the time really differ. From my point-of-view I pass up many exciting artistic opportunities because they would take me away from my family. And from my childrens’ point-of-view, the extra work and burden they feel when I’m away makes it seem like I’m gone “for weeks at a time.”
    So, I tallied up my recent travels– in 2009, I went on 6 trips ( 2 of those I took a kid w/ me) and was gone for a total of 22 days. In 2008, I had 8 trips (4 of those I took a kid or multiple kids w/me) and was gone 22 days in total. There is nothing significant about the numbers–It is just interesting to see our how much our perspectives differ, and how crucial it is to be compassionate to every family members’ needs (even MOM’s!)

    • Janis: It IS interesting and i really think that the last line is the one that we all mostly overlook–to be compassionate to every family members’ needs–including MOMS! When my boys were younger–i planned a 8 day trip to Kenya with a group who were involved with trying to tackle world poverty and lack of education. I had looked forward to the trip for a year. My husband agreed that it would be a good learning experience. My boys seemed fine with it–we had a very good babysitter.

      But, when I told my friends–other stay at home moms, I was slammed by their responses–“I could NEVER leave MY family for such a long time.” “Don’t you think that you OWN community has issues of poverty–why don’t you work on this closer to home?” “All these do-gooders who run around the world–their own kids are always messed up.”

      It is such a tricky thing- to know when your own needs are taking away or giving back to your children. I know, in my case, I have struggled with it my whole life and can say that my boys CLAIM that watching me “do good” and to make art in the world has affected them positively. But, perhaps, that is because they are now 19-21 and 22 and well launched. They have told me that watching me write stories, and make a movie have inspired each of them. All three identify as “artists.”

      But, we women are not always as supportive of each other. Lets remember to be compassionate in our family and in our friendships.

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