Monday, December 4, 2017

Dog and Cat Paintings

When Buddy passed away I didn't write about it. It was somewhat surreal. Making sure he didn't suffer when I was beginning to think he might. I mixed up every Rx I had in the house to make a cocktail to help him sleep until the vet opened at 7:00.   "Just don't hurt, baby."  Holding him, rocking a baby that didn't move. Talking with him and being completely present with him for his last night. I always dreaded the pain I knew Larry would feel when Buddy left us. They were so close. But, Larry left first so that was a mute point, and my sadness was secondary to my job to help Buddy "leave".

I painted this pet portrait of Buddy years before and I'm so glad I have it to remember him.

But today it is all about this cat. I don't love him. I don't even know him, but he has made his way onto my canvas. I was drawn to these eyes and I wanted to preserve them. My first cat portrait and maybe my last. Hope you like him.  He is in Oils, 11x14.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Painting Out The Pain

( NOTE:  This post was written months ago.  I have no idea why it jumped up to the top of my entries again.  But it did.  Although I am past these particular feelings today, it is important to me to have them "documented".  It's all therapy. It helps me and it may help somebody else too.)

If you are currently grieving like I am, how do you lose yourself?  Is it through your work? A hobby? Is your diversion family and friends? Hopefully you can lose yourself in a healthy way instead of having yet another drink, a third bowl of ice cream or curling into a ball and thinking you can cry your grief away eventually. You can't.

I know what works for me. But just because I know doesn't mean that I do it. Knowing and doing are two different things. But if I do reach out and pick up a paintbrush, I can float away from that which hurts me.  I can just let it go, or rather maybe it loosens it's grip on me and lets me go.
Soon I will finish the painting I've been working on with Sherry Hardage.

Work In Progress. Not Use To Acrylics Yet. Learning About Them.
What a great painter, teacher, and friend I have in her.  She 'gets' me and I love her and her work.  Larry and I loved this particular sight. He shot it and I painted it. We always said we would do that.  So even though we ran out of time, he left me hundreds of photos to paint; so he did his part. And I will do mine.

I hope you find your magic bullet for tazing grief so it will be powerless over you for awhile. It will come back but at least it will lay in a heap on the floor for awhile.

2017: New Year. New Path. New Art.

It's been awhile since I was here but I am back, ...for now anyway.  Where to start?  I'll start with this passage from a calendar I received from my son.  I don't know who wrote it.
"New beginnings always need to be balanced with endings.  This is why we have New Year's Eve.  It is not just a time for celebrating.  It also needs to be a time for reflection, summing up, learning from our past year, and seeing and naming the changes we need to make to move forward.  This is why we have New Year's Day.  We humans need to be reminded to end, sum up, and move on."
So, I will probably be naming some of those changes right here.  I'll start small.  That manipulative choice will make it easier for me to see progress.  Smile.

My New Cup. I Love It.

Work In Progress
"Over and Under" Rice Paper on Canvas Board
Random Abstract

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Waking Up In The Woods

"This summer has been like living in the twilight zone."  I said that to one of my sons and he looked puzzled. "The Twilight Zone" was an old Rod Serling tv show I  liked... and it always left you shaking your head and saying, "What?  What happened?"  It always left you wondering .....what was real and what  wasn't and had you fallen into another dimension.

Waking up on a mountain in the woods is the opposite. It is grounding.  And it grounds you.... in nature, beauty, and serenity. It reminds you what is real.  Sunrise, sunset like clockwork.  Big Sky full of leaves soon to change colors and fall, like clockwork. Quiet water.  Stillness. Less wondering.  A small step back in the direction of Knowing.

Stepping out of the twilight zone is a good step to take.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Life's Documents

In October I get to travel! I'm so looking forward to it. I need my passport for this adventure, or rather I need to find my passport. I haven't used it in years.  For days I looked everywhereI thought of all the places I might have put it.  I even checked my safe deposit box. No luck.

You can always order a new one but it's $50 down the drain... but, wait!  Before I do that, there is one more place to look.  Under P.  I imagine a voice saying,  "Sandra, look under P."  Well, of course.  There it is.  Side by side with Larry's passport. He always kept us organized.   Thank you, Larry for filing everything. And I do mean everything!

The journey of life requires so much paper. 'Prove this. Document that'. It never ends.  So, today the two documents I need are a marriage certificate and a death certificate, the beginning and the end. It strikes me so poignantly. It sears my heart to bundle these together. A most joyous day and a most profoundly sad day stapled together. I hate it.  And yet I love it. The foreverness feels complete. A journey we made with many twists and turns is complete.  And I have two pieces of paper in my hand to prove it to those who must have their proof.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Friends and Your Grief

When you go through grief, everyone says they are sorry. And they are. Their hearts break for you.  They say other things too, all designed to show their love and compassion. They may not know it, but every time a friend reaches out it is like someone tossing you a life raft, a float to keep your head above water.  There are hugs, calls, meals, flowers and so many ways they say "I care about you."  It all helps.

Even though all of these touches meant the world to me, I kept each of them at arm's length. "What is wrong with me?", I sometimes thought. Why do I take just enough of their love to keep me sane instead of opening my arms and bringing them into my grief?  They want to share my burden. Why don't I let them?"  It is because "fresh grief", at least for me, is solitary .....and draining. There is no energy left to share with others.  And, somehow it is the last intimate experience I will have with my husband. Yes, grief is intimate and it is almost sacred. 

As days have progressed into months, it is now less stinging most of the time although it is still unreal.  It is more my choice now where I let my thoughts go, more so than when I was swept up and into the grip of grief.  It is now less raw and less intimate.

I came across this poem and I think it speaks the thoughts of my friends when they so wanted to help. I am so grateful for them and I need them.