Friday, June 8, 2012



 I am not moving physically … I am moving forward.

What does flying without wings and lemonade have in common? More than you would think.

Most of you don’t know this about me, and I wouldn’t expect you too, because  I don’t share it. I am a painfully private person and sometimes even those who know me well have to dig really deep to really know me. I don’t bare my soul with many except maybe those who don’t tell and don’t bite back and that would be my four legged earth angel who has comforted me many a wonder-less day or night.
This week  during my lunch hour, I was catching up on some blog reading that I rarely have time to do.  On one particular blog I follow, I ended up there my entire lunch hour and as I was getting ready to log off and get back to work, my eye caught her side bar where she posted  a Thank you to her readers for stopping by.  
It wasn’t unlike anything I haven’t said to other people encouraging them and I have even used some of the same thoughts in my art, but this had neon lights around it, blinking on and off,  (not really) but it was speaking to me loud and clear.


The start of the New Year… still grasping the thread.

My Journal entry: January 2012


When your life is interrupted by an unwelcome visitor such as an autoimmune disease, you are temporarily shipwrecked. You have been taken off course from the direction that you planned or imagined for your life. You are thrown without warning into the ocean without a life preserver and swept up onto a deserted island that no one knows much about. At first you are stunned, but not afraid because you have Hope that help is coming.

Help is not coming

After 12 years of searching and hoping and praying and waiting, you come to the realization that no one is coming. Your hope is diminished and you are forever isolated on this island. The life that you once knew and hoped to return is a distant memory.

It doesn’t matter if the person with the illness is not you. If it is your spouse or a loved one, the toll it takes is the same. It is equally cruel. A spouse suffers the same losses, only without the disease. They don’t bare the disease but they are suppose to hold things altogether, they are suppose to support without fail, be strong without warning, sustain abuse from the sufferer, forgive endlessly, brave loneliness and accept the change without explanation.

There is nothing fair about being shipwrecked. It is always unexpected and never anyone’s fault. There is no one to blame. Only questions, almost always unanswered. I sit on this island, another year gone by and I wonder what I would have been doing if I were not here, if my spouse was not sick. I wonder when help will come, how long until we are rescued from this unwanted intrusion in our lives.  The longer we wait, our lives go on and the more delirious we become. The dreams we held on to become faint and faded.


I still have it, by a thread. One can hold onto a thread for a very long time when you have been thrown off course.  Perhaps one day a boat will come with a cure. If not a cure, then answers. Until then, I sit in solitude on this island and watch daily as the world unknowingly passes me by. I wait and dream and hold onto …to a thread.

Sometimes it’s a mere thread that saves your life.


This is what is what Patti’s Thank You said to her visitors:

Altered Attic is a place I created when an auto-immune illness interrupted life as I knew it; I  embarked upon this journey according to the old saying that when life gives you lemons, make lemonade, or, well, art. Along the way I discovered that God gifted me with more creativity than I'd realized. Though writing and photography, then digital manipulation, have been passions for most of my life, I'd never contemplated merging all the disciplines into a process that incorporates my enormous stockpile of stuff - a pack-rat's paradise. 
The hours I spend producing altered art in the attic answer this question: What happens when one life ends? Just like the caterpillar at that stage of the journey, you sprout new wings.  

Moving forward, now there’s an idea.  Why hadn't  this spoken to me before now? Perhaps I thought I was. Something I have even said to other people encouraging them to move forward many times over?  I am really good encouraging other people, just not so much at taking care of myself. I think that is pretty universal. Sometimes, we don’t face things and we are so busy filling our lives with busy stuff. Sometimes things are just so overwhelming you are just busy  trying to survive day by day. Sometimes we don't even realize we are stuck. I thought I was doing a pretty good job of surviving all things not in my control. Actually, I have been busy submersing myself in art. Always because it is something I love to do and such a part of me and also because it is my safe place, where I let go of things and create things that make me happy. So there I went, with blinders on.  In my heart of hearts, I know it wasn’t for naught.  I believe in a purpose and a time for everything.  I believe that everyone is a survivor of something and at sometime, someone or something will come into a person’s life that will change everything. For me, at a young age it was Art.

Maybe at this time and that particular moment, those seconds were meant for me.  …  how prophetic.   I think wings are meant for angels, you know, those special people who keep us up lifted up, who move us when we need to be moved, who hear us when we need to be heard. Who love us when we are unbearable stinkers and who are there, when we think we are alone.  I don’t think I will be spouting wings anytime soon.

So I am going to work on moving forward, even though everything in me is still screaming:  "it's not fair, it's not fair, it's not fair". But what the hell, not much in Life is fair.

But I do believe in angels, four legged and otherwise, and because of Faith
and Angels and Friends, and Family, Art and Kindred Spirits, Tea and midnight Coffee, I have
learned to fly without wings!

Kudos to my husband who is bigger and braver than I think I could ever be and to the Patti's  of the world who will take your lemons and offer you Lemonade.  

I don’t really care for lemonade that much …. 
but this week, it was …ever so Sweet!


  1. I am not one for reading long posts but . . . yours grabbed me and I stayed from start to finish. Now I can only sit back in quiet admiration. Oh, and here's a recommendation about lemonade - add strawberries. Divine.

    1. What a nice way to enjoy Lemonade! I will try it for sure!!

  2. My eyes have with tears and it is rather hard to type when the key board is going blurry. All I can say it that I was so happy to receive your bundle in the recent Ipsiration Ave card swap, it made my day. so here is a big cheer to you Angels may they always shelter you with their wings.EE

    1. Thank you soooo much! That means a lot to me!!

  3. Bravo, well said my friend!!! I can't wait to get together again for lemonade:)

    1. for sure and like Annie said, "with strawberries"!!

  4. Yes I agree, well said. I'll have a glass of lemonade with you and yes I'll take strawberries in it please. :) Have a wonderful weekend.

    1. Thank you Gloria! Cheers to Lemonade and Strawberries and friends!

  5. What a brave and very touching post, Kim. It's funny you should say how private you are, because I have very often wondered what you looked like, as I have seen photos of the other IA sisters.

    You are a beautiful soul and your art makes my heart soar. I am positive it does the same for others. You create fun happiness in your art and share it with everyone. I am so glad it does the same for you. We wouldn't want to be selfish.

    A great big hug to you and your hubby. He is so lucky to have a bit of sunshine in his life. YOU. I feel lucky to have you in mine, as well.


    1. oooh, Thank you Tammy for your kind sweet encouraging words! I never like my pictures, I am my worst critic. I so appreciate you more than you know! Thank you so very much for your support! People put so much emphasis on looks, I find it refreshing not to have to go there, but I guess one day soon I will post my photo. :)

      HUGS to YOU my friend!

  6. You are just amazing, Kim.
    I know I have told you that a million times,
    but you can never hear it too often.
    I know how private you are and the fact that you bared your soul's just such an honor to be trusted with your
    tender heart, your feelings, your fears.
    You must feel you are us all♥♥♥

    1. Thank you Lisa, you are so dear to me and YES I do feel so loved by you all!! I appreciate all the encouragement, support and love that I have received more than you will ever know. YOU are all so amazing and I truly love each of you!!!! I am thankful that you have all crossed my path in my journey in life!! What a rich person I am!!

      Kim ~*

  7. Beautiful post! I've been shipwrecked for years and living on lemonade--LOL! I guess I didn't spend much time waiting for rescue...just went island exploring. Not that I wouldn't love to see a big boat with "cure" on the side but, in the meantime, I will be busy searching out each and every beautiful thing I can discover on my island.
    *love and gentle hugs*

  8. Kim I just wanted to tell you that this post touched me very much. You write very eloquently and due to experiences in my own life I can relate to your words to some extent.

    I agree that even when life throws us lemons we always have the choice of what we focus on and what we do with them!

    You have a beautiful perspective on life. I wish for you that your journey forward is fulfilling, peaceful, happy and exciting, whatever path it takes xx

  9. Oh dear Kim.... i just finished reading your post about the fluttering heart, & then went to look for the posts i have missed when i read this one. dear dear Kim, i admire you on so many levels, you are encouraging, and inspiring, beautifully artistic and brave! yet if i were there with you now, i'd give you a big hug, cry with you and then take you out to lunch & hit the art supply shop. How i wish we lived closer!
    Know you are loved and keep your heart looking up. YOU inspire so many of us!


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