Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Muse

Dear Ellen

I've been thinking about you a lot this past week. It's crunch time in the studio as I get ready to go to Sausalito for a show. I don't think you liked crunch time too much as it meant I was anxious and grumpy up until the hysterical last minute, but we always managed to get through it and you were always happy to see me when I returned home. My work reflects the change I was hoping for and I'm pleased with it. So many times I wished you were here to help me figure out the finishing touches on a piece and so many times I'd hear you in my head telling me to "calm down". It makes me smile to think of how many times you've had to tell me that.
In a way, I'm taking you with me to Sausalito. The new work is clearly about the loss and transitions I'm making, the expressions and emotions reflected in the faces I've carved. For the first time in a few years I am a little afraid of setting them up at a show and hearing the reactions from people. It feels like I've been stripped down to a core and now waiting for the verdict. I guess, like you would say, "there's only one way to find out". So, a week from today it's off to California and in the meantime, a flurry of fur in the studio.

I'm meeting with someone tomorrow from your old school, Nicholls State. I've decided to set up an endowment scholarship in your name for students who have lost a parent to brain cancer. I think it would make you very happy to know how many lives you touched, not only during your lifetime, but long afterwards. It makes me smile, because I know you wanted to leave some of your estate to charity, but couldn't decide which one. I think this would feel right to you.

I'm off to the studio as there's fur to fly.
I know, I know. Calm down.

I miss you
love, cathy


Peggy Suarez said...

Wishing you safe travels to Sausalito and a great show mi amiga. I read this quote by Pearl S. Buck while traveling last week and jotted it down to pass on to felt right.

"Sorrow fully accepted brings its own gifts. For there is an alchemy in sorrow. It can be transmuted into wisdom, which, if it does not bring joy, can yet bring happiness."

Wishing you peace on your journey,

Anonymous said...

Your journey leaves me speechless most of the time. Just know that my love and admiration for your integrity and strength bursts from my chest in inexplicable ways. So much love for you and our angel.

Anonymous said...

Oops that would be from Victoria the challenged.

Heather said...

Dear Aunt Cathy, What a lovely idea to set up an endowment at Ellen's alma mater. I know she's looking down on you right now and beaming with pride and love. It is such a thoughtful expression of your love for her and I know it will be a blessing for so many students now and in the future. Love and miss you, Heather (PS, I hope I have an opportunity to see your latest work soon.)