There are a few hallmark events in my life that I believe define who I am today. Being born into a military family with a clear memory of my daddy returning from Vietnam shaped me, I am sure, more than I would ever be able to quantify with words. Having a mother who is not afraid to build things, try new things, or (and especially this) do her own thing, has been a powerful force my whole life. I have always been creative. I am so grateful for parents who were industrious and creative. They encouraged me and my sister to be individuals and to always do our best. While the other moms in the neighborhood were saying “no,” my mom let me alter my clothes, which at the time was mostly cutting them up; but I was so proud of my creations!
I feel like “Kintsugi” is a word I can identify with. Kintsugi is the Japanese art of putting broken pottery pieces back together with gold. It is built on the idea that in embracing flaws and imperfections, you can create an even stronger, more beautiful piece of art. I have endured a lot of heartache due to abuse and loss of physical things in my life, but I chose to use my wings, to fly above my most difficult times, landing in that wonderful tree called “art.” I feel like developing my skills as an artist saved my life at times. Rather than sink with the burning ship around me, I focused on expressing myself through the healing processes of painting and journaling.