Well friends, this is going to be a short post, I think. The wind has been knocked out of my creative sails by the death of my mother a couple of weeks ago. Although she was 99, it was in a sense unexpected. She was healthy and alert. We had a pleasant catfish dinner the night before; she ate well. When I kissed her good-bye (I was visiting from out of state), she thanked me for visiting (so sweet!) and said she would see me soon. I believed her.
Back home, my crochet projects languish. They lay on the dining room table where I had left them. A pile of reversible beanies that I was so excited about just a few days ago seem stupid and pointless. Over last couple of weeks, one hat has crept toward completion one slow row at a time. Today, I received the booth application for a popular arts and crafts show coming up in the fall, but I’m not feeling excited about participating. Not feeling confident I can make anything people would want to buy.
While I wait for the creative spark to reignite, my eyes rest on some familiar objects that make me happy (photo).
- The yellow Red Wing plate. I purchased this in Batesville, Arkansas just a few days before Mom died. I was drawn first to the color and second, to the scalloped edge. On sale for $7.00. I bought it when my sister Mary and I spent a morning in the local antique mall.
- The metal cookware made in the Czech Republic. Bought these years ago in a small junk store near Maria Stein, Ohio. Again, the color caught my eye first, but loved the fact these came from the Czech Republic. Can’t remember what I paid for them, but they were cheap. Bought when my 21-year-old son was just a little boy, and I remember he picked out some little thing at this store as well. He was car sick on this trip.
- A tea cup and saucer that my Mom had sitting on a shelf in her kitchen for years. We seem to have forgotten where it came from–is it old and collectible, or just something that caught Mom’s eye many years ago? There are no markings on the cup or saucer. At any rate, it reminds me of my mother and her Louisiana upbringing.
Objects are important to me–not in the materialistic sense, but as solid embodiment of the people, experiences and stories we want to hold close. Looking at them instantly transmits a flood of warm memories and sensations–the sound of a loved one’s voice, the smell of gumbo heating on the stove, the feeling you had at a long-ago birthday celebration or your mother’s cool hand on a feverish forehead. You get the idea.
Do you have some favorite objects that hold this power over you? I hope you will take a moment to share your favorites in the comments below. And, if you’re in a funk over a loss, an illness, or a depression, hang tough! You’re not alone. Give yourself permission to take the time you need to get back on track–whatever that may be.