When I heard this year that Marin Open Studios was on Mother’s Day Weekend, I couldn’t help but feel even more compelled to participate. Since losing my mom to depression and kidney failure, over 2 years ago, I look for all the little (and big) ways to honor her.
Hosting an open house to showcase my photo art for the community will, in essence be a tribute to my mother, to her spirit and to deeply honor her and her love of art and her life in general. This is a gift to her (and ultimately to myself) mostly because the art I am doing now and getting out into the world is because my mother, Susan, was an art fanatic and helped me develop an appreciation for art.
After she passed, I ramped up my artistic and creative endeavors for selfish reasons (I love to capture and create) and partly because my mom kept her artistic talent closeted and under wraps and in that particular aspect, I didn’t want to follow in her footsteps. She had good reason, though, for not following this path– raising two children with debilitating depression was not an easy task. For most of my mother’s adult life it was more than enough to cope with her day to day tasks and at many times all these tasks left her feeling overwhelmed and at times she ended up hospitalized. I am in tears as write this not only because I miss her but because of the deep emotional pain which eventually manifested as physical pain, that she endured for so many years. It breaks my heart consistently when I think of this heavy emotional burden she carried that unfortunately was never alleviated. But now there is peace which she so desperately wanted. And fortunately, I feel very lucky that despite all the pain, there are many beautiful, heartfelt and fun memories that live on.
As I share this story, I thank all of you for reading my words and I feel for all the women and men who endure debilitating depression and live with emotional pain. So many family members of those with clinical depression have stories such as this one- my heart reaches out to you.
I am grateful for this opportunity to participate in Marin Open Studios during Mother’s Day Weekend. Thank you mom for your generous spirit and for being such an inspiration. I am blessed to be able to follow my passion and dedicate a good chunk of my life to creating art. I look forward to honoring you during Open Studios Weekend.
Open Studios are all over Marin County during the first two Weekends in May.
For details see: marinopenstudios.org
and for more of Mary’s work see: imagesbymaryserphos.com