Thursday, May 7, 2009

Losing my Art, But not my Mind (....Yet)

I really thought that I was losing it tonight because I could not find this piece of artwork. I've been working on 11 pieces to send to a shop in Florida (more on that later) and I was trying to finish them up. I counted them and I only had 10. One was missing. I remembered working on it last night. I was so close to being finished - this project that had taken me much longer than I thought it would, due to the stomach bug that went through the house all last week.

I tore my work room apart and the family room next to it, thinking through possible scenarios of kids running off with it, dogs eating it, babies flushing it down the toilet. These things have been known to happen in our house. After a good hour of searching I was extremely frustrated. I admit I didn't handle it very well. I called everyone downstairs and tried to jog people's memories by describing what it looked like, showing them similar examples. No one knew anything about it. After what I deemed as their "half-hearted" attempt to help me look, I sent everyone away. Are you picturing with me how I might have been yelling? How I might have taken my frustrations out on my family? Can you picture how later on, when my oldest came downstairs to ask me something how I snapped at him - then offered a lame explanation that I was very sad that I still couldn't find my artwork, rather than offer a sincere apology?

Later, when I still couldn't find it, and didn't know where else to look, I was in tears. I thought I might be going a bit crazy. I was basically having myself a little fit. I replayed and replayed the day, hoping something would jog my memory. I was kneeling on the floor with my head on my chair, having just looked under my desk for the umpteenth time - asking God to show me where it was. I happened to be staring at the dog's kennel, where I sometimes lay pieces out on top of it to dry, wondering if our dog could have somehow pulled an 8x10 piece through the little metal openings and simply eaten the whole thing. I had already pulled her cage out and looked all around it. I had already looked in between the 3 pieces of plywood and 3 boards that were laying on top of it - several times in fact. But from my angle, with my head laying on my chair, I could see that there was something between the bottom piece of plywood and the cage. It was my piece!! I knew that there was no way that the kids could have moved this very heavy pile of wood, but what I hadn't realized was that there was just enough space to slide something very thin underneath. I had just pulled it out when my oldest, Will, came down with this that he had made for me:
I was done for.

This sweet boy knew I was hurting - however stupid that may sound to some of you who have real problems - and he wanted to make it better. Despite the way I treated him. I wrapped him in my arms, covering him with kisses and hugs and sweet words. I offered him, and his brother and father, the sincere apologies they deserved. And I'm going to hang my son's artwork in a place of honor where it will hopefully remind my hotheaded self to be more loving.

***when I told the older boys where I'd found my missing art, Will suddenly remembered - he 'may have' slid it under there, and Sam who regularly hangs out in the kennel - while the dog is in it! - clearly recalls looking up and seeing it. huh.
***I'll be posting pics soon of the pieces that will be going to a shop in Florida!


  1. I loved reading this today! Thank you for being REAL....I'm always trying to show that i don't always handle things in the best way and a lot of times I lose it and end up having to apologize. A good lesson for us all! I'm glad you found the piece (which is beautiful!!) and i love the one that Will made!!!

  2. OH - MY - GOD - (and yours) The things He will do to teach us and show us His mercy. On your knees, surrendering, and ka-pow, there it is. And Will's actions have brought me to tears once again. I think you should scan or copy his painting and send it along with your artwork and the story to the shop in Florida!!! Your kids are so special, Jill. (so are yours, Laura!) So are yours, Em, although they aren't here yet. OK, I'll stop now and dry my tears.

  3. OH...MY...HEART. It's full this morning after reading this. What a great story. Seriously. I love that it happened when you were on your knees surrendering and praying. Then God was like..." it is!" That's where we need to be AMEN?!
    Mom-don't make me cry!

  4. what a great story! i am so glad you found that piece, and that God made you wait for it too :) and....i am cracking up over the line about Sam 'regularly' hanging out in the kennel! hahaha...

  5. so glad you found your fabulous artwork!! and the artwork from your son is absolutely precious! thanks for sharing your real life stories! :)