Anniversaries of loss

Today is the one year anniversary of our first scan with Tamlorn, the one where we found out they were not okay and we would most likely lose them, which we did. I wrote here on this blog on March 13th in 2015; Some days are just sad. This week, Rose and I celebrated 3 & 1/2 years together. Rose has had a couple of anniversaries of miscarriages recently. Later this week we will have our morphology scan to check the health of our little froggie. Today I learned that another of my lovely friends on the other side of the world has recently suffered a miscarriage too. So much. Everything overlaps like currents in a sea.

I am creating my first self hosted solo exhibition and some days the doubts overwhelm me. I’ve learned to stop working on any artwork for a day or two at the point where I’ve come to hate it. Putting together a whole exhibition on a theme is new territory – exciting but also new. Mortifyingly exposing and personal. An exhibition about grief and loss feels like the strangest birthday party I could possibly arrange. And yet… it also feels right.  There’s so much grief in the background of my life at the moment, under the surface, forming the soil from which my new family is growing. I’m working on new artworks to balance the exhibition and they are a fitting way to mark these painful anniversaries that come towards me like trains, and slip past me like leaves in a river. There’s not enough time in the world to weep all the tears, instead they flow quietly from my brush in a corner of my lounge room late at night.

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A sample of an ink painting I’m working on for the exhibition

And the strings of heartbreaking stories like strands of pearls that unfurl in the threads following declarations of loss call to me. Some days I struggle with feeling my exhibition is silly and pointless. Then I’m reminded so many people have suffered this way, without acknowledgement, without funerals, silent and nameless and secret and broken.

So, it’s a little thing I can do in a big world full of hurt. Make a place where we can remember, where the grief is shared and public and accepted. It’s not much in the big scheme of things, but it’s something I can do, and maybe those who need it will find it.

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