Tonight, in an open forum, the faculty of the January term were each asked to answer one question - how their story informed their creativity and inspiration. Some of their stories were incredibly poignant, some sacred and others were laced with wit and humor. In listening to them, I realized that I have not honored mine - at least not completely. My mother was one of the most creative people I have ever known. She came from a long line of Italian tailors, being taught by her mother. Her skill with a needle and thread was masterful. Although I could never find a love for the craft, she never ceased to amaze me at what she could create. I know that the dedication that I have for clay can be partially attributed to her.
We also endured a very difficult relationship. My mom struggled with many hardships in her life and though I had great compassion for her, there came a time where I couldn't be the recipient of the fall out. I simply ran out of understanding. I felt a great need to protect myself from the pain, and in doing so, created great distance as a way to save my heart. Since her passing over 8 years ago, it has taken a lot of time and thought to get to a point where I could not only forgive her but also forgive myself.
As I sit here tonight, I want to let her know just how thankful I am for every single gift she gave me. The hardships, the pain, the creativity, the determination, all of them. Without those events in my life, I'm not sure I would have had the fortitude and passion for the creativity that resides deep within me. Through these events, I have become clear about my purpose and my path. No blame, no excuses, just a deep sense of gratitude for the story she told.
Thank you, Mom. Safe passage on your journey home ❤