“Mourn and Rejoice” 4×4, oil on canvas

January is the longest month. All the others end as soon as they start. But January brings with it a daily painting, and that alone seems to extend it. 

I looked at my nine year old yesterday, put both my hands on both his cheeks and said, “Will you do me a favor?” “Yes!” he replied. “Will you stay just like this? Forever?” 

He smiled. “Mom, you know I can’t do that.”

I know. 

Every season there seems to be longing for the one that was or hope for the one that will be. January keeps me focused on the day that is, the painting that is now. Maybe it teaches me to properly celebrate and to properly mourn all that passes through. I like to think of my little brass bands as both grieving and celebrating: all that’s gone, all that is, and all that will be.