You were one of my first adopted mothers in Supported Living. This was the time of my great awakening to the understanding that you and Mom were members of a generous community, remarkable individuals who cared for one another. I would arrive at the lunch table with Mom and you would greet us with a luminous smile. I quickly moved from being a visitor to a member of the family.
I’m not quite sure how the ritual of the neck massages began but I’m pretty sure they started with you. Most likely I was looking for a way to express how happy I was to see you but you loved them so much that soon nearly everyone, except Mom and Ruby, wanted one as well.
Once, amid groans of pleasure, I began singing Heaven, I’m in Heaven. You joined right in and by the time I finished going around the table, everyone was singing.
Once you said, You have such happy hands. I love that.
You are also a fabulous artist. Now and throughout your life.
When I told you that your artwork as going to be in an exhibition you were so pleased. Then hesitation. Are you sure? Yes Jane, I said with a smile. Several seconds went by. Are you sure?
She is isn’t painting these days but even now, when I tell her that her art has brought joy to thousands so looks at me with wonder.
Are you sure?
Yes Jane, I am.