Posted in art and healing, creativity and health

What Do You Celebrate?

Welcome to Art and Healing Wednesday!!

We just finished the holiday season, but I’m still wondering what you celebrate?  We all celebrate different things for different reasons.  I’m not sure why but we often think of celebrations as religious or congratulatory.  In fact, life should be a celebration and for many it is, but following a diagnosis of a chronic or other life-altering illness finding something to celebrate may be a bit more difficult.

This question posed itself last night when I received my packet of postcards and brochures for a textile art exhibit opening next week at the Longmont Museum in Colorado.  The exhibit is called, “America Celebrates”.  Judith Trager, an internationally recognized textile artist and author, was asked to curate this show that will travel for the next three years around the United States.  Judith asked 53 artists, of which I am one, to create a work of art about something we celebrate.  The only requirement was that the piece had size limit of either 24×24 or 24×36. 

It’s one thing to celebrate an occassion, but what about milestones in your life?  For some there may be a celebration when you finish treatment.  Others may celebrate after numerous check-ups where there has been no disease progression.  Perhaps you celebrate because a new medication was finally approved bh the FDA.  In native or aboriginal cultures, celebration may take the form of song and dance.  Every culture is different, but it makes me think about how I want to celebrate milestones in my life. 

I create a Christmas quilt every year (I’ve got quite the collection), but what else can I celebrate by creating a work of art?  Maybe celebrating the fact that my auto-immune disease is steady, no flare this year during what is usually my circadian rhythm for such an event.  Perhaps it’s time to celebrate having health insurance at a time when the newly elected Republican majority hopes as of today to begin undoing healthcare reform. 

It doesn’t matter what you celebrate, but doing it creatively is fun and honors where you are on your journey to wellness.  I’d love to see some of your creations.  Feel free to e-mail me at, or if simply hit the comment button and share a story about what and how you want to celebrate the life you’re living!


I've lived my life in service to others. I'm focused on mental health and how it impacts our relationships, culture, and society. Through creative expression and narrative I believe we can impact change.

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