Wednesday, December 17, 2008

In honor of my mom

My mom passed away on Dec 4th after a hard battle with lung cancer. The best word I can think of to describe this whole experience with my mom is...surreal. I left sunny, warm California to fly to Wisconsin to be with my mom all day, my siblings and me taking care of her needs in a beautiful hospice care facility, surrounded by cornfields, with the weather cold and gloomy outside, knowing this would be the last time I would be with my mom. It's heartbreaking, it's life changing's transforming. These past few years my mom and I grew a bit distant from each other, but this whole experience and her death is life altering for me. I feel a new self emerging. I have been taking stock, reflecting on my life and initiating change. I feel more grounded, more adult and even less materialistic. The few material possessions I thought I could never do without...photographs and my childrens artwork and baby things no longer hold their appeal, because in the end it just doesn't matter. What matters is how well you lived the journey, were you kind & generous with your talent and time, did you give of yourself, did you live a happy and joyous life, now hard did you laugh, did you do what you love. Did you love well? These are the important things. And so I am making changes....and I am creating like crazy. I don't even sleep in on the weekends any more...I'm up creating artist trading cards. Every chance I get I'm noodling with them...doesn't matter if it's 15 minutes or hours. I wake up in the middle of the night excited about my artwork, about life, about where I am going and who I am becoming. My mothers life and death has given me a new and fresh outlook on life, in ways too numerous to mention and in ways I could never have anticipated.


sherry smyth said...

Kathryn, my heart goes out to you on your mother's passing. But you did the good thing, you did the "right" thing for her and for made the time in your life to spend the last of her's together. How blessed is that? You made her new journey easier to start.

And your mother's new journey is also your new journey. Sending you peaceful thoughts, the joy for your creating and thoughts of the season.

Cindy said...

I was sorry to read about your mom's recent death. I lost my father almost three years ago, and ti was a transformational experience for me, too. For two weeks prior to his death, I was in the room with him almost 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I talked with him late at night, listened to him tell stories about his life when he couldn't sleep, and even heard a "death bed confession" or two. The experience was amazing, painful, and completely surreal -- just as you say. I'd like to think that I'm a better person for having gone through that experience than i was before. I think I've also re-evaluated what's important to me and how I live my life.

Again, I'm sorry for your loss. You'll be in my thoughts.

Kathryn Hansen said...

thanks Cindy for your comments...what you said about re-evaluating what's important in really struck me that this is a constant process...and being able to center yourself every day.


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