@robichon @Brenda @Meme5 @Denise @LindaE @OmaDevi41
Thank you everyone for sharing your stories. Looks like the concept of this coaster design is relatable for many people. I will submit this one to the show organiser without changing anything. The deadline for submission is 17 Aug and by then I need to submit 5 designs, not 2, according to the submission guideline they provide because they are going to prepare a coaster design catalogue. So I must start working on the remaining 4 as soon as possible.
Well, looking at my mother in the current conditions(osteoporosis, cerebral infarction, femoral neck fracture, dementia), I often think of Viktor Frankl’s “Attitudinal Values”. As long as I can remember, I once read a book by Frankl, in which he picked up an episode of an eminent ad designer whom he met in the concentration camp. The designer lost all the possibilities of creating wonderful ads, in which sense, he seemed to have lost the most important values he could provide. But when he came close to death, he showed compassion to one of his fellow prisoners in the camp by sharing his food. The value that the designer materialized by choosing such an attitude as a human facing the difficult situation v.s. the value that he might have achieved as a designer, Frankl thought that the former was way larger and more profound.
Our values are something far beyond what we do. My mother was a very active person being involved in so many “productive” activities, and now it is totally opposite. But look at the faces of the people who support her now. They are all full of quiet satisfaction and fulfillment. Because they know that they are doing what they are meant to do. Then I realise how right Marcus Aurelius was when he wrote that humans are made to be supportive to others. “Eyes don’t demand any gratitude for seeing as they are made to see. Humans are made to be kind to others, so just move, be kind to others and don’t demand anything in return.” -he wrote in Meditations. So working as a caregiver is being given opportunities to fulfill one of the purposes of our own existence. The opportunities per se are a good enough source of satisfaction, but when it is combined with a positive attitude of the care recipient, like my mother shows, something quite precious and valuable is generated there.
Come to think of it, I did deal with a similar subject in my previous animation “the sea of kahya”. It is a 2019 film and my mother was still in a perfect condition then, so probably I had something different in mind which motivated me to make this film.
Harvey considers himself useless after going through a series of failures at the audition. But Kahya lets him know that it is not his accomplishments but his attitude toward difficulties that encourages her to try new things. Gosh, I also remembered that I had another episode of this series in my to-do list…
Anyways, thank you again for all your feedback to this product design and your stories. It has been a really good food for thought. I will keep this in mind when designing the remaining 4 coasters.
As to cats, I don’t have any for myself. I used to do in my childhood, a very very adorable, smart little shiny black girl cat, but there was a traffic accident when I was ten years old. I haven’t had my own cat since then. I have been yearning to have one (or as many as possible), but once I learned about the activities of “Flatbush Cats”, a NY-based cat rescue NPO, I cannot decide if it is really a good choice to have cats on a personal level. If I can spend some money for keeping cats, why don’t I use it to support the activities of this kind of organisations? They are now working to build an excellent facility which can provide well-rounded support(medical, nutritious, birth-control) that every cat requires. They are trying to address the root cause of the problem that unhappy cats are made. I always melt when I see cats and I know that I will be extraordinarily happy if I get my own cats, but whether THEY will be happy to have me as their cat mom is another story. There are some groups working for cats well-being here in my home town too, so I may want to support their activities and enjoy the company of their cats instead of keeping some cats to myself. Watching this video by Flatbush Cats has made me think that fostering might be the right choice for me: