work in progress "Peek"
8 x 10 watercolor
Today I was talking to a friend about being a mom, she is married but they don't have kids yet. I was saying how hard it is for me to take time to do things that I love, because I feel so guilty about taking time away from my family when there are a hundred other things clamouring for my attention. She said that it must be hard to do that when you have kids and I agreed that yes it certainly is, but it's one of those things you just can't know about until you go through it yourself. When I was pregnant with my first child everyone, and I mean everyone, told me I would never have a good night's sleep again, that my husband and I would never go on a date again and that life as I knew it would never be the same again. But what no one ever told me was how instantly and powerfully I would be in love with my new baby. I admit the strength of that emotion took me by surprise, I knew I would love that baby and already loved him through the pregnancy. But when I first held that brand new irreplaceable soul in my arms my life was changed, the best change of my life. I had never felt such instant and powerful love before, so the lost sleep and fewer date nights weren't that big a deal, not when the reason for those was such a precious, loved little thing.
So that conversation got me thinking about my art. Why do I paint? Because I love to, because I love to try and express just a little how much I love my children, how they are my whole world. And because it makes me happy and you know what they say about Mama being happy. So I try to convey that through my work, I try to show how I feel in every piece that I do. I try to put a little bit of my soul, so to speak, in each painting. Hopefully others feel that, but if not that's ok, because I do and that's the most important thing. I think that's why it's so scary to put your work out there whether it be art, writing, photography, or whatever you do. Because you risk others not appreciating what you have sweated blood for, pouring your whole heart into it. It takes courage, and I think that all mothers have crazy amounts of courage. You just have to because those little ones, dearer to you than your own life, need you to. Here are two of my favorite quotes about motherhood and art, every time I read them they lift me up and make me try a little harder.
". . . the artist brings courage. Painting something important to you just because you care about it, regardless of whether anyone else will think it matters - that is painting with courage. . . it takes courage to share your vision with the world." Carole Katchen
"You have nothing in this world more precious than your children. When you grow old, when your hair turns white and your body grows weary, when you are prone to sit in a rocker and meditate on the things of your life, nothing will be so important as the question of how your children have turned out. It will not be the money you have made. It will not be the cars you have owned. It will not be the large house in which you live. The searing question that will cross your mind again and again will be, How well have my children done?" President Gordon B. Hinckley
work in progress untitled