On Wednesday I went out to the cold, dusty garage and dragged in a big blue tub labelled neatly in my father's handwriting: MARIAN. I was looking for paint brushes. Specifically, oil paint brushes. I had two blank canvases sitting in the guest room closet that had been blank (and in the guest room closet) since I dropped oil painting (and my art minor) my junior year of college--and I'd had it. They were perfectly good canvases, and I had perfectly good oil paints, and who cares if I had absolutely no clue what I was doing? The canvases were already wasted by just sitting around being blank. That is logical, right? Unfortunately, all I could find in my art box was watercolour brushes, so to the garage I went.
I lugged in the blue bin to a chorus of "Mommy, what are you doing? Mommy, what's that? Mommy, why are you bringing that in the house? Mommy, what's in there?" (Can't you see I'm working here?) and proceeded to dive right in. There were no oil paint brushes, just a lot of painful memories I wasn't ready to face. So I repacked the tub and drove to Walmart with the boys and bought some brushes. Just. Like. That.
|Art class. Littles takes his work very seriously.|
Tiny doesn't take anything seriously--except maybe dancing.
He has a mean macarena.
Today the boys and I had art time, by which I mean I taught Littles the fine art of watercolour painting and set Tiny in his high chair with a spare paint brush, the roll of masking tape, and a water jug to entertain himself while I tried my hand at oil painting. And behold: I produced a masterpiece beyond my expectations! Just kidding. It's not anywhere near finished and will probably look awesomely horrible--but I had fun! And so did the boys (Littles more than Tiny--he knows when he gets the short end of the stick).
|I don't know what the deal is with that cheesy grin.|
Anyway, Little Man's new artwork called for a redoing of the clotheline, and I just happened to have found a super awesome world map in the blue bin while I was poking around looking for paint brushes, so I basically redid their entire wall, and once again--I had fun! May I just say, if you don't have a clothesline somewhere in your house, you have not lived. (Yes, I'm joking, but seriously: best decorating decision I have ever made. Ever. That clothesline completes me.) And then I took pictures so you can see the wonder that ensued. You're welcome.
|The clothesline and map. Plus Littles' head. |
He really wanted to be in the picture.
The blue bin is still sitting in the kitchen, covered in dust. I'm using it to barricade the dog bowls (Tiny has taken to playing in them of late--it's disgusting). I haven't decided if I want to face the music and have another go at it or wait it out and put it back in the garage. And the truth is that I think either option is alright. I think it's fine to say, "I'm grieving, and maybe it's inconvenient, and that's okay." I think God knows when the time will be right for me to hold those memories in my physical hands and until I'm there I refuse to add guilt to grief. Instead, I choose joy: paint brushes, clotheslines, and world maps. I'm not hiding; I'm waiting. And while I wait, I choose joy.