• Angela Tahara

The greatest gift from the Universe came from The Netherlands

My journey was to take my mother to her homeland. She is 87 and uses a walker so off we went to see family in Limburg. I expected a slow boring time, but I didn't expect an amazing immersion into art and the connection to my creative heritage. My Aunt's partner was on his death bed quite suddenly and had but a week to live and I had not met him before. His name, Aud, could not speak english, nor could my Aunt, and I unfortunately could only make polite replies in dutch so I was useless at conversation. Aud motioned me over and held my hand from his bed. He was so pale and you could see the bluish veins in his warm shaking hands. He spoke to me in such urgency and teared up a few times. He wanted so badly for me to hear his words but I could only make out "art" time and again as he squeezed and shook my hand. After near five minutes, I thanked him gently, stroked his forehead and kissed him on the brow.

That night I asked my mother who was near as to what he said. She was annoyed as mother's and daughters have tensions which I will not go into at this juncture, but I insisted that she tell me. She told me that he regretted that he had not met me sooner and that the moment I walked in the door he could see that I was a great artist. That he could see colours in me and that I should never stop. That I needed to ensure that I had someone to support me in my life with this. Aud has never seen my work. I wish I knew what else he had said but I am satisfied with this.

The next day my cousin said that when I walked away, Aud had called her over and told her the same, that I should know that I needed someone in my life to support my art.

So why am I writing this? Epiphany, my friend and it is the pivitol signposts that we receive in life. That knock on the head. That pay attention moment.

My entire life I have walked up this art hill alone and completely unsure if this is the path for me. We all climb our hills, of course. For myself, my close tribe has worked against me and so I made the decision to climb alone under a barrage of negativity. The art community yells loud as to how it should be and what hoops an artist needs to jump through in order to be accepted and I turn my ears off and go my own route, knowing it is a tougher journey but I must be true to my inner calling. All of my past intimate partners look upon it like it is an amusing hobby and care less where my soul resides. Yet, I climb my hill, wondering if my hill has the amazing visions that I see in my head and heart.

This last year I met a man, someone I became intimate with, who approached me with wonder about why I painted what I did. Not only has he become one of my biggest fans, but he ensures that I have the time to spend the hours I need to create. He, who is a techy, constantly leads me into the arts and puts wind under my wings. Both of us have had a number of past relationships that have soured and so we are wary of exposing our full selves and putting full trust in each other too soon. I was contemplating a future with this lovely man who gives so much and I believe I got my answer. For him, when I returned, for the first time since we met, he told me he loved me.

Aud had passed away four days later and I wish I could have given him comfort. He certainly gave me peace and a lovely gift. I don't know what the future holds, but I do know that all is just as it should be.