Today is one month since I said goodbye to Hypatia. It's been, without a doubt, the worst month of my life. But I'm trying really hard to let all of the good memories comfort me instead of making me sad. I was talking to my dad a few nights ago about how much I miss her, and then we got on the subject of painting and art, and how I hardly ever feel inspired to put paint to canvas anymore, as if all of my creativity has been completely drained. He suggested that I consider the qualities that made Hypatia such a special cat -- her gentleness and her sweetness -- and try to channel that into art.. to let her live on as a muse.
I thought about it a lot, and I kept coming back to one image - a photograph of my dad's mother taken in the 1940's near the water (you can view the original here) I was still very young when my Grandmom Eve passed away, but my own recollections of her, along with all of the stories I've heard from my parents, reflect an incredibly kind, gentle woman whose memory still brings comfort to my dad and my mom. I like to think that if there is anything after this life, she's taking care of my Hypatia for me right now until I get to see her again.
As usual I'm not 100% happy with the final product (is any painter/writer/artist ever?) but it was so nice to paint again, even if I did feel pretty rusty. But this particular piece wasn't so much about the final product, anyway, as it was about the process. I forgot how therapeutic painting could be.. letting myself get enveloped in the warm memories of two gentle souls and releasing some of my heartache onto the canvas.