Thank you Uncle Peter

My uncle is a painter.

I don’t mean someone that thinks they are an artist and does adequate yet fulfilling work.  I mean the real deal.  The actual, genuine article.  The type of painter where you weep and feel his creation in your toes, where you have honestly considered selling half of your worldly possessions just to be able to have that type of beauty in your life. Just to see that beauty each and every day.

Don’t believe me?

Growing up we had several of his paintings in our home.  A larger piece sat over our sofa for years and was a cornerstone of my childhood.  It was of a field with a lone standing deciduous tree.  I remember the arch of the tree trunk that he created and contrast it had against the dark looming sky.  Being sick and laying on that couch I would stare up at that painting for hours.  As a kid I assumed every kid had an Uncle that painted.  Little did I know just how good and just how marvellous he was.

My Uncle and I have been close over the years of my coming to adulthood.  His gentle, kind temperament and quick wit places him as one of the dearest people to me on this earth.  When Ava died, many times I ran to his quiet space for shelter in the grief storm.   Quiet, honest and cathartic phone calls where he held me up and through.  He simply got it and what he did not understand he respected and made me feel very loved.

It was only natural that I ask him to help me create a tribute to Ava. I knew I would only be able to have one of his pieces and it had to be a tribute piece.

This past spring he drove to town and I took him to her tree in the pouring rain.   I showed him what I wanted him to paint, her tree but when it was small.  So that no matter what happens to that tree, I will always have it just as I did the day we planted it.  I would forever have that moment of love and honouring of her life.

And just a few weeks ago, I got to bring it home.


In the doorway of our bedroom looking out

He captured it perfectly.

Picking the right spot for it in the house was the happiest challenge I have had in a while. I wanted it somewhere I would see it each and every day.  I wanted it to be somewhere wide, where people can stop and appreciate it.  The best spot is at the top of our stairs at the doorway to our room.  It will be the first thing I see coming out of my room and going into Lillian’s in the morning.  It is striking, delicate and feminine.  I love that he created the river behind it as it is at the park (with just no splash pad between.) Most of all, I love that I have something created for my first born by one of my most beloved people.

Thank you Uncle Peter.

Author: Melissa

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