The Art of Death

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I’m not where I planned to be at 30 years old. I thought I’d be planning a wedding this past year. Instead, I found myself standing at a different alter – at my fiancé’s funeral – giving a voice to the love we shared since he could not. For the past 8 months, I’ve been picking up shattered pieces and putting them back together into this new formation of whatever I am to be. And I’ve been tripping and re-breaking along the way too. That process will continue for a long time. Its a part of me now. But his loss has left me with gifts too. I have new eyes to the world. I feel everything deeper. I follow my intuition and trust the unknown more. Death, especially one sudden and expected, has a way of doing that it seems. It strips from you all the parts of yourself that aren’t strong enough to hold on, until all that is left are the bare bones.

Death taught me what I cannot live without. I can be in the most unimaginable depths of pain that life can take me to, and still I can find beauty there because I can make it. Even in darkness, I can make something that brings me light. We all can. And we can share it with those who support us.

I’ve spent a lot of years compromising the life I wanted for a safe, steady, secure one. But death took the fear away and left me there with something of a “Okay world, I’m not playing your game anymore” attitude. It pushed me over an edge I was too afraid to go to before. It taught me that fear is an illusion we create, and it’s not a real reason to not live life.

In this way and through our loving memories, my fiancé lives on and continues to influence my art and my life. In fact, from his loss my life has become far richer and more full of love and beauty than anything I could have ever imagined. That’s not to say that it isn’t still burning and cutting into me – because it is – but its a two-sided coin. And I am infinitely grateful for what his loss has taught me about art, love, and life. I owe this whole beautiful new journey I am on as an artist to him. Thanks, babe.



4 Comments on “The Art of Death

  1. Love all that you have said and totally believe in how pain breaks us to the core. Hurrah for you and being on the other side of the darkness.

  2. I just lost my mom a week ago Monday to a car accident. She was 87 and had lived a long and fulfilled life. She was in great health and we expected that she would live quite a few more years, but obviously you know – you never know, when is the last time you see that person that you are so connected to, that is so woven into the fabric of your life. In this case, what I realized and already knew from losing my Father 4 years earlier, the greatest respect I could pay them was to exhibit as evident truth, the love, grace, belief, fortitude and faith that they had embedded in me and gave me license to test and prove on my own. I am proud to say that our whole family pulled together shoulder to shoulder with the same resolve. Ironically, what my parents passing has shown me, is how blessed I am. A trees roots are only tested when the wind blows strong and the hold of an anchor is only tested when the hurricane rises. I am more confident today than ever in the core belief of my faith due to my losses because in the end they have become victories. Oh death where is your sting, oh grave where is your victory?

    • Thank you for writing Tim, and for reading. I was so surprised to see your name. I’m so very sorry to hear of your mother passing. I’d lost quite a few people before Drew, but none were unexpected or sudden. It really is just a whole other kind of experience. But you so eloquently put it, death really does teach us so very much about life, and about how blessed we are. I love what you said about a trees roots being tested by the wind, or the anchor by a hurricane. That is one I will certainly remember. I’m so glad to hear your family has rallied together. A true blessing indeed.

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