I've had some good news that I just have to share. ..news that has caused me to reflect back on some of the major changes in my life. Fair warning that this post is as much about life as art, but the two are inextricably linked for me at this point in my life.
The good news is that Sonja and her family have decided that they will move down to Virginia next month - come "hell or high water." Though nearly all the "details" (jobs, place to live, how to get here) remain to be finalized, they made the decision to come here when their lease runs out instead of trying to find temporary housing. It is a huge, brave thing they are doing. My husband and I are walking on air that we will soon have our whole family living in the same area again. (Our son Peter has lived here for over 10 years.)
That prospect got me thinking back over the years and the events that caused major changes in our lives. Needless to say, having children was probably the biggest of those life-changing events. How different things would be today if we had not changed our minds about having kids. When we married, our plans did not include children. It was the early 70s and married women, myself included, were just beginning to see themselves as potentially having a career, not just a fall-back job. I loved kids, I just didn't know how I would manage a family and a career. My master's thesis was about the effects of having children on a woman's career, so I knew my fears were not frivolous. Ironically, the thing that changed our minds was a TV program.
I believe it was an early Masterpiece Theater series. It was about a family involved in the women's suffrage movement. The element of the show that opened our eyes was the relationship between the parents and their grown children and how they shared their passion for something they truly cared about. We realized that that possibility of sharing a life's passion with your adult children was something we just didn't want to miss. We decided we'd just have to figure out the logistics of life with two careers and kids. It's been a wild ride sometimes, but boy was it worth it!
Art is one of the areas where we've shared our passion--especially Sonja and I. We've shared it in a serious way for more than 15 years now--keeping our Friends Fabric Art connection alive even when we moved down here. We are looking forward to having more opportunities to work together in person again in the coming months.
This joy is expressed in a piece I have just begun that I am calling "My Heart Took Flight." All the energy and feelings of anxiety and anticipation will find their way into additional layers of stitching to complete this.
In celebration of this next phase of our life/art journey, we have created a special 10% off coupon good for any purchase in our Etsy store. When you checkout, type FFAFRIEND in the "Apply coupon code" box to receive your discount.
Mother & daughter, Ann Lee & Sonja Lee-Austin share their joys and struggles in their art and lives.