I thought I could be finished painting. I went months and months without picking up a pen or brush. I felt so devastated by my mom’s severe stroke…and her brain damage and paralysis that followed. To see her continued suffering through a very difficult recovery process, a long recovery process, and not be able to really help her – it has been so hard for all my family.
But my Mom, she’s a warrior. And she has been fighting every single day to make progress with her physical therapy. She’s able to sit in a wheelchair for a few hours now despite still being paralyzed on the left side. She’s able to eat a normal diet now, after months and months of eating therapy. We’re so proud and grateful for these improvements. We’re so thankful we still have her with us.
And…amid all of this…Mom started painting again. She’s doing a bird series. She asks the nurses to move her next to the window for natural light. She has a set-up on her tray to help her manage the paper and paint and brushes. She paints with her one good hand and uses her paralyzed hand to hold down the paper. Unfortunately, Mom has lost her muscle memory she developed from a lifetime of painting as a result of her brain damage. This means she has to start all over again. She has to learn to paint all over again. And yet, Mom continues to paint because she loves it. Because it gives her joy. Because it helps her connect with the world.
Mom has inspired me. And here I go. Drawing again. I have a new series I’m working on. I’m calling it the “Chaos Lupita” series because that’s how this year has been for me. Art imitating life.