Today: Relish

First off, thank you for the kind comments to yesterday's post. I hope I didn't sound hopeless, it's just a very reflective period for me to grow inside...sometimes (well, really most of the time) it's uncomfortable, but growth is always important and essential. If you can tell from my painting storm yesterday, I love the way growth is marked in natural elements: tree rings, shells, geodes. How minor imperfections create the most interesting and beautiful asymmetry.

To get back on track with the point of this blog, this site has a great list of how to rejuvenate the home. I think home rejuvenation is very similar to personal rejuvenation.

Slightly relevant to the last post is a vow to stop holding on to the things that aren't uplifting, and obviously the antithesis to that statement: releasing the layers. Both of these showed up yesterday in a painting storm of quiet tones and a somber mood. After a 6 year battle, my dad's cousin Jean died of cancer. Although I wasn't close to her, she's been a constant in my life as long back as I can remember.

Her death brought out my dad's memories of my own MeMa's (my mom's mom) battle with cancer. I live in her house now, I tend her plants. I was 3 when she died from breast cancer, she lived with it for 3 years. My 30 year old mom had a 10 year old, a 2 year old, a 1 year old and a newborn (me!) when her mom's cancer was diagnosed. She switched roles with her own mom at that point and became caregiver to her mom, along with being mother to 4. My dad said she would get my brother off to school, feed us all, bathe her mother, clothe her mother, feed her, begin the process of feeding the three of us toddlers all over again, pick my brother up from school. . . and so on.
(This is a painting my mom did some time ago. I'm not sure when, but I see this man as a shaman. I find hope in his kind and wrinkly face.)

These are things I never knew, a daily ritual of which I was unaware, but incredibly eye opening. Cancer isn't a battle for one person, it's a battle for many, and for 6 years, Jean and her loved ones won.

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