Sunday, July 24, 2011
A Kindred Spirit, I'll miss you
I'll miss you Betty,
I didn't want to read the news today that my dearest Betty passed away and I didn't want to know that it was true. My dear Bev told me now and my heart is so sad and I feel so bad. But these last days Betty has been in my thoughts and prayers and I have thought about what an amazing lady she has been in my own life as a teacher and a friend.
Sometimes in teaching I have the chance to show people how to let what is natural and creative to flow forth, and to embrace that which comes natural to us. I always felt that if we did that, we would always be true to ourselves. Through our art, we would always see what was true and what was not about ourselves.
Betty was one of my first students here on Roses. She never shied away from trying anything. She never missed a journal entry in the Journal Journey Group, she always traded her art, always. She took every one of my workshops and learned everything she could, and created everything she could, with joy. When she felt well, she took on the job as an art trading hostess. She loved being here! And loved to share!
She gave me a nudge when I forget to visit her and see how her work was progressing, and she always told me how much it mattered to her that I did. She told me that Roses was the way it was because of me, that I had made it a place where people could learn and share their art, and support each other as they went through all the phases of learning. She didn't care about all the fanfare or the fake stuff, she was true blue Betty, and she didn't want me to forget to keep it real. Betty was my teacher too.
She gave me the confidence when early I may have been uncertain, and she made me better at what I do because she always asked questions, good questions. And she always, always, said thank you.
Last Christmas she sent me a clock with a pretty bird on it. And, it sits on my mantle. It ticks so LOUD, you can't believe it...but I think of it as saying to me, "remember, time flies, and in that time, make haste, and live your dreams."
I spoke to Betty about a week ago and I told her how much she means to me, and she knew. I told her I loved her and that she was in my thoughts and prayers. Betty being Betty said, "I love you too Zinnia." I knew she meant to make me feel better, and not worry about her. That is Betty.
So, I will say good bye to her in one way, but she will will always be with me. You don't forget friends like Betty, because they don't come along every day.
I want to tell you all that you can't make art without making friends. Loneliness, is a bad place to put yourself, it is what makes us feel tortured. Find friends who lift you up, who give you the positive energy and support you need to live your dreams and be yourself. If your friends hold you down or make you feel bad about yourself, let them go, and fly on. They might really want to keep you where they are, afraid and lost. The clock keeps ticking and it is reminds me that our time here is brief, and we need to keep moving on.
A countless number of wonderful Roses friends created the Kindred Spirits book for Betty and she received them in time to know how much you all love her. From your hearts, you gave your time, your art, and your prayers. Betty loved that. I loved that. And I thank you all for being, 'that kind of friend.' Some of you wanted to contribute, and if you couldn't, you sent prayers, and I thank you for that too.
Betty was the kind of friend who made you feel good about being you. I hope I can always remember that. So from her blog, her family has shared this and I want you all to read it and remember the best of who Betty was. She really did feel the words in this poem as she battled for many years to overcome her illness. She is the toughest lady I ever I met, and she knew how to face the dark with a strength I can only wonder at.
I will miss you dear friend...Zinnia
From Betty's blog:
"Hope" is the thing with feathers—
That perches in the soul—
And sings the tune without the words—
And never stops—at all—
And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard—
And sore must be the storm—
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm—
I've heard it in the chillest land—
And on the strangest Sea—
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb—of Me.
Posted by A - Zinnia Productions at 1:17 AM