Saturday, March 12, 2011


Charcoal on pastel paper

What a month it has been.  On Feb. 8th, there was a fire in the apartment 2 doors down from my mother's.  She was hurrying to put on a robe to evacuate when she fell, hit her head and knocked herself out.  She had bleeding on the brain and broke 3 bones in her wrist (dom. hand).  Thank God she didn't need surgery.  I have been scurrying around trying to get her into assisted living, fill out paper work for aid and attendance benefits, keep up with her doctors, spend time with her, and I was advised to set up a burial trust for her.  Sobering thought.  Exhaustion has draped it's cloak over me and I can do nothing but surrender.  I - am - tired.
The other night I got a call that she was having trouble to the ER, now she has pneumonia.  An 84 year lady with one lung has pneumonia.  I visited her today, she is so confused she doesn't know where she is.  She told me she wants to die.  She doesn't want to live, this is no way to live.  My eyes filled up with tears.  I didn't want her to see me cry, but maybe I should have.
She has given up, there is just no fight left in her.  She's ready to go.  I cried all the way home.


The drawing was done in 1996. 
 The photo I used was taken
 when she was in the sanitarium
 after having a lung removed from TB. 
 She was only 19.
  I covered the paper with charcoal
erased a grid
placed a grid printed on a transparency over the photo
and went at it.
grid by grid, erasing and drawing,
I love the sound of charcoal on paper.
It was her Christmas present.


wanda miller said...

YOU and your mom are in my prayers...i've had a taste of this myself.
this is an absolute beautiful drawing of her...a treasure for yourself i'd say.
much love, prayers and hugs.

Chris said...

Thank you Wanda!

jgr said...

Yes, you and your Mom are in my prayers, too. I wish I could give you a hug, it's so hard to see parents ill and frail. The drawing is lovely, as Wanda said: a treasure. Take care my friend.

joanne said...

what an exquisite work of art, obviously created with your caring heart, every stroke of charcoal like you were lovingly holding your mother in your hands... which is just what you are doing for her now. I am so incredibly grateful that she has you to love her so deeply and care for her in the ways she needs you to the most right now, to let her express her feelings and have her body attended to for her comfort...

I also hold you all in my heart and prayers for comfort and for strength. Let the tears flow.

with love and a hug from far away that i wish so much i could give you in person.

Tim Robinson said...

Looking good.

Chris said...

Wanda,Jane and Joanne, thank you so much for your prayers and friendship. It means the world to me.

Tim, thank you ;)

Leslie Avon Miller said...

Challenging times. I'm glad it sounds as if she is doing much better. Assisted living can be a real blessing, with other people around to be friends with.