This week my niece is up visiting from New Jersey. She is a sweet and very, very smart and creative girl. She is my brother's daughter. This past April, my brother died suddenly, leaving his wife and 14-year old daughter behind. He was only a year older than me.
This, by anybody's definition is tragic. There are no do overs of these moments. It is forever. I lost my Dad 13 years ago. While this was painful, it was also expected. My brother's loss was not. Losing a sibling seems to be a strong reminder of our own mortality...that and the passing birthdays! In this time of mourning, I have had moments of gratitude. Gratitude that I went back to school this past year to study art; something I always wanted to do, but hadn't. Gratitude that I have spent time attending more to my relationships in recent years. There is a constant push pull between the time to attend to our own needs, and the needs of those we love. It is worth the struggle to try and find some balance. Regrets are few. I am not putting off living the life that matters to me. It does not mean a life of constant joy, but a life of greater peace.
Enough tragedy. Now some joy. I promised an image of my latest painting; the first in my new studio! I am very happy with how it came out. Could it be better? Sure. But in my opinion, it is better than the last painting, so that is my yardstick for now. Hope you like it too!
|"Dance", 2013, oil on stretched Arches oil paper, 36" x 48"|