There is no medicine like hope, no incentive so great, and no tonic so powerful as expectation of something tomorrow. -Orison Swett Marden. (1850-1924)
The month of June was filled with travel, family and fun. This year was our 30th wedding anniversary so we took a short trip to visit Falling Water - a famous house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright over a waterfall in Pennsylvania.
We are generally cautious about being out of town for any length of time since one of us needs to be here in case of an emergency with Mike’s parents. But we wanted to do something to celebrate, so we took a four day trip to go there, swing by Youngstown, Ohio to see the Butler Art Institute and then to Cleveland to see aunts, uncles and cousins before coming home again.
Once we were back and unpacked, we got ready for visits from relatives from Chicago and then from Texas. All our stories, and all our visits stirred up Mom’s spirit and we were able to get her out and about for a couple trips. We took an afternoon to visit the Japanese garden at Frederick Meijer Gardens. It turned out to be a lovely day and we saw about half of it - leaving more for another day.
My sister-in-law was still here when we celebrated Mom’s 95th birthday with a trip to the Grand Rapids Art Museum followed by take out from Olive Garden, a birthday treat and then presents. She thoroughly enjoyed her day and having her daughter here to celebrate it with her. I have hopes that now Mom has been getting out a little this summer I can coax her out again. She had become so discouraged I wasn’t even able to get her to let me take her out and just stroll around the grounds. The visits of family and the day trips have revitalized her I’m happy to say.
In fact I’m about to go out and visit and see if their computer is still up and running. I was able to get her email back in order and I want to be sure it stays that way. It’s a cloudy day and I know I won’t be able to get her outside. But summer isn’t over yet and we all have hope.
Hope is a precious commodity. I haven’t been to the studio much this month. Just a couple times to water the plants and to pay my rent. But I still have hope.
Donna Kemper put aside her art career to care for a mother she hadn't seen in over a decade. For seven years she followed her mother's journey into dementia, caring for her and putting forgiveness into action.