Georgia’s Ladder

I’m going to make a concerted effort to keep posting here.

It’s been a few weeks of travel for me, after not going anywhere since 2019. Finally planned a trip to New Mexico with my daughter (and fellow artist) for mid-September. We had waited YEARS for this…I forgot how awful air travel really is. I met up with my daughter in Albuquerque, and we drove a rented car up to Abiquiu to visit Georgia O’Keeffe’s home and studio, then Santa Fe on the third day. The trip was short but so wonderful. That desert geology is gorgeous, as is the architecture. And seeing the actual places that O’Keeffe painted was a revelation!
My daughter came back with me to the cool greens of Washington State for the remainder of her week off. Thoroughly enjoyable and too short.
The day after I put her on a plane back to the East Coast, I got a call from my 90 year old mother, with what she called “good news”. It seemed that what we thought was a small contained tumor was actually stage 4 bone cancer, aggressive and throughout her entire skeletal system. She had 3 days to live. Her good news was all about not having to suffer through long drawn out treatments and pain. I get the logic, and her life-long enjoyment of shocking people. this was her last chance to do so, and she took it! She was going into hospice care that night. She knew that the morphine drip to manage her pain would render her unable to communicate and wanted to say her goodbyes.
And so we did.
How many folks get THAT opportunity for closure?
Still. I booked a direct flight for that evening, got me into Newark at 5:30 am, where my brother picked me up and took us directly to the hospital.
We were told she could still hear us, so for 2 days I talked to her and held her hands, said all the things we had already said, again…
Returned home, and she passed on the 4th day, being not one to adhere to anyone’s expectations, and in the wee small hours when no one was there.
One good thing that came out of this experience was reconnecting with my brother and his lovely family. Living on opposite coasts for so many years had taken a toll on a relationship that wasn’t close well before that.
But now we are, and much to look forward to.

In a few days, a friend and I are driving down to the Oregon Coast. No planes for a while!
We need to be near the ocean.

Painting is a meditative process.

This piece was finished yesterday.
Georgia’s Ladder
A view of one of the courtyards at O’Keeffe’s Abiquiu home and studio.
Oil on canvas, 20′ x 20″