Goodbye 2008

My painting has been spotty lately. Personal events have taken a toll on my ability to focus.

I hate to be negative but 2008 was a terrible year for me, on a personal level. I lost both my parents. My Dad in June, on their 61st wedding anniversary and my Mom just before Christmas.

June was also when my wife began radiation treatment for a recurrence of breast cancer that we now have learned has metastasized and spread to her lung. She’s still got treatment options but, after fighting so hard for ten years to avoid it, it was really hard to hear that news.

On the brighter side of 2008, I did make a lot of progress with painting. I think my work improved a lot and I was thinking of perhaps showing some this year. It’s difficult to get there but, when I can get to the easel, I like what I’ve been doing. I think that spending more time drawing has been good for my painting as well. In 2009, perhaps I’ll spend more time developing my drawings as well as paintings.

I really enjoyed following the thoughts and progress of other painters and appreciated the continued support of folks who dropped by my blog to see what I was up to.

I’m hoping that some kind of normal will emerge that will allow me to return more attention to painting.

I am hopeful for 2009.

18 thoughts on “Goodbye 2008”

  1. That’s a LOT for one year. I had a stint like that back in the 80’s: parents died, husband left. Took a long time to recover. I hope you have sufficient wisdom to help you through grief and challenges. Drawing helps (Thanks to Danny Gregory). And writing (there’s proof of it thanks to James Pennebaker). Draw when you can. Ask for what you want. (Hope there are good new procedures to help your wife.)


  2. Oh, Bill, what a painful year you had! I pray that your wife will get the most advanced treatment available and for continued courage and physical strength for both of you.
    Please do start showing your work. Framed and matted sketches are beautiful . I think you would have great success selling them, if you wanted to.
    Hang in there. I think this will be a terrific year, on many levels.


  3. So very sorry, Bill to hear this 2008 sad news. They are doing so much in the treatment field for this, now, and some of my relatives keep beating the odds,
    again and again, with the courage and hope that both you and your wife also keep showing. I hope that signs of recovery come soon and that your painting will give
    you some comfort and relaxation.


  4. Bill, I read about your parents on another artist’s blog where you were responding to the loss of his beloved mother. My heart went out to you both, and I was terribly grieved for you that you lost both of your parents last year. To read here now about the fight your wife has had with cancer as well, and you by her side, I am so sorry. You have had so much on you. I don’t want this to be about me, but I want to share something which relates. I was nearly devastated personally and artistically when my father died last year. He was my dear father, a fabulous artist, my mentor, my friend. When he passed the joy of art, for me, slipped away, too. I struggle with it daily still. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer a few months later. That you lost both your parents, and your wife is and has been fighting so hard, I know it must be so very difficult for you at times. As was posted before me, I pray for strength, courage, and goodness in your life and that of your wife. I will keep that prayer going.


  5. PainterWoman, That must have been a terrible year for you with your husband leaving just when you needed someone. I appreciate the advice, my wife has good treatment options. We’re very fortunate.


  6. Silvina, I appreciate your prayers very much. I think the strength to accept what comes it really the only thing one can pray for. I have mixed feelings about showing my work, but we’ll see what the year brings. Thanks for your continued encouragement.


  7. Hi Annie. Your words are very comforting. I believe that my wife still has many productive years to live yet. Although she was first diagnosed 10 years ago, the cancer has been in remission for most of that time so, she has not exhausted the treatments available to her. Thanks for visiting.


  8. Tina, thank you for your prayers. As I said above, I think strength is the best thing to pray for. I’m very sorry to hear of your loss and your mother’s diagnosis. I hope she’s getting good care and can fight off the disease. I’ll send prayers back your way as well.


  9. While I reading that everyone here has ample strength and comfort and expects their life and the lives of their loved ones to continue into the foreseeable future, I recommend Irwin Yalom’s book called Staring Into The Sun. He’s a 75 year old psychotherapist (sterling reputation, too) who writes about facing death from a view point outside any religious framework. I appreciated that there were ways to “cope” even when my faith was failing.


  10. Bill, we seem to never realize what we’re made of until we’re tested. I’m terribly sorry to read about these devastating trials of the past year. It would seem unendurable.
    We find the way to endure and even at times, thrive again. The timetable and how it’s done are so individual so find the ways that work for you.
    I’ve walked some of the same steps, as it seems some other readers of yours have.
    Whatever comfort you find in painting is good for you.

    Strength, hope, faith, friends and family. It all helps.


  11. Hi Bill, been enjoying your blog for a while and just wanted to say I’m sorry to hear of your troubles. Hang tough and get back to painting soon alright.


  12. Painter Woman, thanks for the book recommendation. I’ll check it out. I have, over the years, often found solace in the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche.


  13. Bonnie, I appreciate your thoughts. These trials are, of course, part of what makes up every life. Trying to experience them that way is not always easy.


  14. Hi Jana. I read recently that 2008 was the Chinese year of the rat and thought of as a bad year. I hope 2009 is better for all of us.

    Thanks for checking in.


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