For Father’s Day, I put my fledgling watercolor skills to the test and tried my hand at a small painting for my dad. It doesn’t quite look the way I envisioned, but I really enjoyed working on it, watching the colors flow into each other, trying to remember my white spaces while allowing happy (and not so happy) accidents to occur. It’s not terribly good, but at least the sky seems cheerful and the cabin feels cozy with a friendly moon hanging overhead.
The treehouse my dad built for us some 20 years ago is still standing strong in my parents’ backyard. I don’t climb up very often these days, but I’m looking forward to the time when my own son will be able to clamber up among the leaves to spy on the lizards and squirrels, and survey the neighborhood and the sky from the treetops.
My heart hurts for Orlando, my hometown.
Yesterday’s horror took place 10 miles from where I grew up, on a stretch of road where I spent many nights in my teens and 20s, feeling carefree and happy and connected with my community. One person armed with hatred, prejudice, and an evil machine invaded a place of love and acceptance and destroyed dozens of lives, hundreds of families. I am bewildered and sad and very angry but I am also filled with hope that laws will change, lives will be saved, people will learn to hate less and love more. My heart is lifted in seeing the community come together in solidarity to donate blood, hold vigils, and struggle to change gun laws and lessen anti-LGBTQ bigotry to help prevent yet another senseless, preventable, horrific tragedy like this one.
You have my heart, Orlando.